What can you say about Patrice Bergeron that hasn’t already been said? There’s certainly not a lot, and when talking about the Bruins center, the same words and phrases keep coming back again and again.
That will likely be the case once again in the coming days after it was announced that Bergeron has signed an eight-year contract extension with the Bruins that will keep him in black and gold for a very long time. Bergeron’s reputation as a good hockey player is exceeded only by his reputation as a good professional and a good person. Anyone who’s ever spoken to him for even a few seconds has come away with the same impression.
But those who know him best outside his family are his teammates, his second family. That was no more evident than this postseason when Bergeron played through myriad of injuries on the way to the Stanley Cup Final. So on the day he re-signs with the Bruins, there’s really no better way to describe his impact and what he means to the B’s than to hear it from those teammates themselves.
David Krejci (June 24, following Game 6 of Stanley Cup Final)
“Yeah, it was good. Obviously, we’re a close team here, and we knew he was going to play. No matter if he plays five or twenty minutes, just to have him on the bench,it gave us a lot of energy. We love each other here. We want to play for each other, and to have him on the ice and on the bench was great. I was really happy that he was able to play. It wasn’t easy. He’s a warrior, and he loves the team.”
Tyler Seguin (June 24, following Game 6 of Stanley Cup Final)
“I think even when he was getting dressed in the locker room before the game, you could feel the boy’s sprits lifted. The year we won he was doing the same thing; fighting through everything. Obviously guys have bumps and bruises, but he’s a guy that you obviously say is the heart and soul of our team. He wears that ‘B’ with a lot of pride.”
Chris Kelly (June 24, before Game 6 of Stanley Cup Final
“He’s been the glue for this hockey team for a lot of years. Like you said, he’s one of our best players.”
Claude Julien (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“Bergy, what can you say when you hear what he played through? What more could you ask that guy to do?”
Tuukka Rask (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“I didn’t really know 100 percent what was wrong with him. I know he was in a lot of pain and stuff but seeing him go out there and trying to battle through it like that with one lung I guess. I don’t even know how to describe it. It’s pretty amazing.”
Dennis Seidenberg (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“But again, like Bergy, I can’t stop talking about him. How crazy, how much he went through to play game 6, I can’t believe it. … It just shows how much he went through to play Game 6, I can’t believe it.”
Shawn Thornton breakup (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“You can’t say enough about him. He’s an inspiration. He’s a man among boys, as far as the toughness goes. I think what he played through, I’m not sure how many guys could play through that, so it was pretty impressive. That’s for sure.”
Gregory Campbell breakup (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“Well, I mean that’s, for Bergy, he’s a guy that, he’s the leader of our team. He’s a very dedicated individual, so I’m not surprised that he was willing to do that for the team, and he’s always putting the team first, but as I said a couple of days ago when I was asked the question about myself, that’s playoff hockey. It’d be hard to find a guy 100 percent healthy that’s playing this deep into the season, and that’s why it’s so gratifying to win is because you do sacrifice so much over the two months and the season that unfolds before the playoffs, so it takes everybody and he was a huge part of this room that we had and obviously it’s going to hurt the team when one of your best players is not 100 percent, but the respect that I have for Bergy [Patrice Bergeron] and for what he did and put himself through is tremendous.”
Brad Marchand (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“Bergy, you can’t say enough about him. He’s a warrior and the fact that he was able to play the whole game, I mean every time I came off the bench I was a little nervous about him and I kind of watched him and I could just see the pain and agony he was in. It was unbelievable to see him play through that and it just gives you that much more respect for him.”
Milan Lucic (June 26, Bruins break-up day)
“His willingness to play in that game and to leave it all out there is really impressive. Playing through what he played through and his will to win. And that’s why he’s basically won every trophy a guy can win, that’s why he’s one of our main leaders in this hockey club. He’s shown how important of a player he is. And it was pretty inspirational to see him suck it up and play Game 6, and I think that’s why we had such a great start.”