There are several question marks surrounding the Bruins as they prepare for Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final on Thursday night.
The biggest ones, of course, are whether injured defensemen Zdeno Chara and Matt Grzelcyk will be able to take the ice in front of the TD Garden crowd. Another is who will have the honor of waving the flag as the B's banner captain.
Boston has had several notable banner captains over the course of their playoff run. Rob Gronkowski, Marc Savard, and Julian Edelman waved the flag in the first round. Jaylen Brown, Aly Raisman, and David Andrews did so in round two. Ray Bourque and Bobby Orr waved the flag in the Eastern Conference Final. And so far in the Stanley Cup Final, members of the 2011 Cup champion Bruins and Bill Belichick have been banner captains.
So who's left? Here are a few options:
Duh. Brady is the obvious choice here especially since he's in the area. There might be a scheduling conflict for Game 5, however, as the Patriots will receive their Super Bowl LIII rings on Thursday night. If that's the case and the series goes seven, Brady is a no-brainer.
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The next best choice to fire up a Boston crowd would be none other than Big Papi. No Red Sox players, current or former, have been banner captains yet during this postseason. Ortiz would be the man for the job.
John Krasinski (a.k.a. Jim Halpert)
"The Office" fans would love this one. Jenna Fischer (a.k.a. Pam Beesly) is a Blues fan and Krasinski is a Bruins fan. It'd be a great way for Krasinski to get back at Fischer for her pro-Blues video prior to the series.
Marcus Smart (or other Celtics)
The Celtics have been huge supporters of the Bruins throughout the playoffs, so it wouldn't be a surprise to see them continue that in either Game 5 or Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. Smart would be an excellent choice as he always finds a way to fire up the TD Garden crowd.
Won't happen, but the TD Garden roof would blow off if it did. Now would be the perfect time for Thomas to come out of hiding.
Of course, the Bruins could always go back to the well and get Rob Gronkowski or another star that has already waved the flag, but we'd expect them to go with a surprise for Game 5, and especially Game 7 if the series comes to that. We'll find out soon enough.
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