Sports fans in Boston were fortunate to witness many memorable performances from some of the best athletes on the planet in 2013.
The year began with the Boston Bruins kicking off a shortened NHL season, one that ended with an exciting playoff run in which the B’s came up just short in the Stanley Cup Final. Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask. and defenseman Zdeno Chara and center Patrice Bergeron provided some incredible moments throughout the postseason, and their superb play over the last few months has helped Boston sit atop the Atlantic Division standings as the calendar turns to 2014.
The New England Patriots fell short of a second straight Super Bowl appearance with a loss in the AFC title game to the Baltimore Ravens, but the team is poised for another deep playoff run after finishing the 2013 regular season at 12-4 and earning a first-round bye. Tom Brady helped the Patriots overcome many injuries to key players on both sides of the ball with late-game heroics against several opponents, including the New Orleans Saints and Cleveland Browns.
For the Boston Celtics, 2013 was a year of transition. The team traded aging veterans Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to the Brooklyn Nets in the summer, and allowed head coach Doc Rivers to join the L.A. Clippers. The next chapter in the franchise’s storied history began with the hiring of former Butler head coach Brad Stevens, who has drawn rave reviews in his rookie season on the bench. He’s helped develop an impressive group of young players, one that may be able to earn a playoff spot when Rajon Rondo returns from injury.
The city’s lone championship in 2013 came courtesy of the Boston Red Sox, a team that completed the greatest single-season turnaround in MLB history with a World Series championship. The Sox captured the hearts of Boston with a spectacular playoff run that provided many incredible moments, including the team’s first championship clinched at Fenway Park since 1918. Three players at the forefront of the Red Sox’ success were veterans David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia and Jon Lester, whose clutch performances and leadership led the team on a magical run.