BOSTON - There was no such thing as choosing sides on Sunday afternoon at Fenway Park - at least before the Red Sox' afternoon tilt against the Tampa Bay Rays.
In a show of solidarity, the Bruins joined members of the Florida Panthers, Red Sox, and Rays prior to the game to help raise funds for those impacted by Hurricane Irma, which came ashore in Florida on Sunday with Category 4 strength.
Bruins Zdeno Chara, Patrice Bergeron, Torey Krug, Adam McQuaid, Kevan Miller, Noel Acciari, Kenny Agostino, Paul Postma, and Brandon Carlo were stationed at Fenway's gates alongside various members of the other participating teams to collect donations from fans attending the game.
"Unity - we just want to help out, we want to show how much we care about other states. I think it goes a long ways," said Chara. "Teams came together. [It] doesn't matter [that] we're going to be competing in the season…right now is the time to help out."
Former Bruin Shawn Thornton, now the Panthers Vice President of Business Operations, and current Panthers Aaron Eckblad, Derek MacKenzie, Mike Matheson, Alex Petrovic, Mark Pysk, James Reimer, Colton Sceviour, Vincent Trochek, and Keith Yandle also took part. Members of the Panthers organization evacuated Florida on Friday and traveled to Boston to be close to the facilities of the Springfield Thunderbirds, the team's AHL affiliate.
"Everybody's pretty aware of what's going on down South right now and our hearts are with those guys. Anything we can do to help, we're here for that," said Miller. "The Florida Panthers came up. Obviously they can't practice down there, so they came up here - and Tampa's here as well. It's a group effort, anything we can do to help."
Red Sox players Joe Kelly, Deven Marrero, Blake Swihart and former Boston closer Keith Foulke, along with Rays pitchers Steve Cishek and Jake Odorizzi, also helped gather donations.
All donations will go to support the Red Cross to assist the region of South Florida. The Boston Bruins Foundation will match the total funds raised at the gates.
"We know we can only do so much," said Chara. "But every little bit is hopefully going to [make] a difference to the families and those who are most affected by the hurricane."
Check out more photos from the day's events below: