On this date, 21 long years ago, Zdeno Chara stepped on NHL ice for the very first time.
The Boston Bruins defenseman made his NHL debut Nov. 19, 1997 for the New York Islanders. The imposing Slovak played 11 shifts against the Detroit Red Wings, finishing plus-2 with no shots on goal.
Chara on Monday celebrated the anniversary of his NHL debut in — yet another — gracious Instagram post.
“21 years ago on this day November 19th 1997 I got to play my first NHL game in the best league in the world,” Chara wrote. “I am so grateful and blessed for what this game of hockey gave me and taught me during this time. The best thing is I still love it and appreciate it even more now than then. I still continue to learn about this game and even more about myself.
“#dream #nevergiveup #firstnhlgame #nhl #1997 #newyorkislandersvsdetroitredwings #keepgoing”
(You can click here to view Chara’s post, which includes an epic throwback photo.)
Congrats on a long career, Z.
As for the 41-year-old Chara, he currently is nursing an injury to his right knee. The Bruins captain is expected to miss roughly 4-6 weeks.
Thumbnail photo via Ron Chenoy/USA TODAY Sports Images
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