Zdeno Chara on Tuesday signed a one-day contract with the Boston Bruins to retire as a member of the storied NHL organization.
The special pact marks the end of a Hockey Hall of Fame-worthy career for Chara, who played 14 of his 24 NHL seasons in Boston. The longtime Bruins captain helped guide the Original Six franchise to 11 playoff appearances, three Eastern Conference championships and a Stanley Cup triumph in 2011.
The Slovakian defenseman’s name is etched in Bruins lore, ranking top 10 in club history in games played, plus/minus and defensive point shares. Perhaps most impressive, Chara’s 14 seasons of wearing the “C” on his Black and Gold sweater are the most in Bruins history, ranking ahead of the likes of Ray Bourque and Johnny Bucyk.
The 6-foot-9 blueliner walks away from the game with a slew of other accolades, including six All-Star selections and a Norris Trophy in 2009. The Bruins also twice honored Chara with the John P. Bucyk Award, handed out annually to the Boston player who sets the standard with their charitable and community endeavors.
Chara will go down as one of the greatest Bruins of all time, and his No. 33 eventually will receive its deserved spot in the TD Garden rafters.