The scene at TD Garden for Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Boston Bruins and St. Louis Blues is going to be incredible, but it's difficult to pinpoint how emotional the crowd will be.
Why is that? Well, a Game 7 of the Cup Final has never been played in Boston. Wednesday night's showdown is the first one in the 95-year history of the Bruins, and the first championship Game 7 of any kind for Boston since the franchise's triumph on the road against the Vancouver Canucks in 2011.
Patrice Bergeron was a member of that 2011 Bruins team that won the ultimate prize in Vancouver, and he's excited to see what kind of atmosphere Game 7 brings out of the Boston fans.
"We're expecting the fans to be awesome," Bergeron said Tuesday. "The energy is going to be electric. The atmosphere is going to be -- I can't even imagine how it's going to be like. You have to manage that in a way -- use it to your advantage and use that energy. And also make sure you're focused on the game."
The energy from the fans before Game 5 last Thursday was breathtaking. The crowd gave Bruins captain Zdeno Chara -- who suffered a broken jaw the game before -- a rousing ovation when he was introduced during the starting lineups. It was one of the loudest standing ovations in the building's history, and Chara said Tuesday he was "overwhelmed by the response of the crowd."
Game 7 should be on another level, though. Boston sports teams have won 12 championships since 2000, but only the 2008 Celtics and 2013 Red Sox clinched a title in Boston. The possibility of seeing Chara hoist the Stanley Cup on home ice will generate a tremendous amount of emotion in the Garden, and the Bruins will benefit if they channel that energy into establishing a fast, physical pace at the start of the game.
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