Brad Marchand Reveals Biggest Takeaway From ‘Incredible Human’ Zdeno Chara

'He's an incredible human'


September 20

BOSTON — Brad Marchand was teammates with Zdeno Chara for 11 years and learned a lot from him along the way both on and off the ice as members of the Bruins.

Chara on Tuesday signed a one-day contract to retire with Boston after a Hall-of-Fame-worthy NHL career that included a Norris Trophy, a Stanley Cup and several All-Star Game appearances. More than just the accolades, Chara never was afraid to put his body on the line, as showcased in 2019 during Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final when he played with a broken jaw.

Marchand and Chara won a Stanley Cup together in 2011 and went back to the Final in 2013 and 2019. They experienced the highest highs and lowest lows and they (along with several others) helped establish the Original Six franchise as a prominent playoff team.

Marchand had the chance to learn from Chara since his Bruins debut in 2009 and took valuable lessons from the 14-year captain during their time together.

“What he wanted to build and represent every day being a captain, being a leader. His work ethic, his attention to detail, not even just on the ice but off the ice,” Marchand said Tuesday after Chara’s press conference at TD Garden. “He’s always trying to improve himself and get better. He took a real estate course while he was out for a month with an injury. He would learn how to speak multiple languages on the flights. He reads like a book a day. He’s an incredible human. Hockey is not just where he tries to better. He tries to get better in every aspect of his life. The way he switched up his nutrition and tried to get healthier. He has that ability to push himself everywhere in life and there is a reason why he played for as long as he did. He’s so driven and it really is incredible.”

Chara’s impact on the players, organization and city of Boston will be something current players take with them through the remainder of their careers. It’s clear they saw just how hard he worked in all aspects of his life.

The 45-year-old truly embodied what it meant to be a Bruin, and he’s passed down valuable knowledge to those still playing now who also had the opportunity to play with Chara throughout their careers.

Retired Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara
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