, Zdeno Chara
, Phil Kessel, Milan Lucic
, Marc Savard
, Tim Thomas
and Blake Wheeler all “worked” with Pro Shop staff behind the counters, assisted customers with all of their shopping needs and signed autographs for anyone who purchased the new gear.
“It’s very exciting to (see) the new third jersey,” said Chara from behind the counter of the Pro Shop. “It’s very nice and I like the design – it’s very simple.
“And it’s also very exciting so many people showed up.”
Over 700 people joined the party and bought several hundred of the new jerseys.
“We even had some people who drove 12-hours to get here,” said the Bruins captain, incredulously.
Amongst the Black & Gold throng who skipped out of work and school early were friends from Oshawa, Ontario who spent 12 hours on the road.
Allison, Anita and Mitch started out from Canada at 5:30 p.m. last night and arrived in the Hub of Hockey at 5:30 a.m.
"It was 569 miles and 849 kilometers," said Mitch, who did the driving and said they were turning right around to head home after the event.
The new alternate jersey is black with gold trim at the neck, and has two gold stripes and one white stripe on the arms. The Bruins secondary logo, which is featured on the shoulders of the Bruins home and away togs, is featured on the chest of the third jersey. Alternately, the Bruins primary logo (or the familiar spoked-B) is located on each shoulder.
The new socks are black with two gold stripes and one white stripe.
The B’s have not had a third jersey since the team unveiled its new logo and uniform system in June of 2007 and the club will wear their new alternate uniform for the first time on the “busiest shopping day of the year” on Friday, November 28 when the B’s host the Islanders at Noon.
“We’re one of 19 NHL teams that are launching their third jersey,” said Amy Latimer, the Bruins Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing. “We thought that the best way to launch it would be to have the team wear it on ‘Black Friday.’
“And we asked ourselves, who are our best advocates and the best people to introduce it (to the fans) today? Our players. So we wanted to have our players be the ones to help customers purchase the third jersey.”
Latimer also talked about the uniqueness of the event -- after all it’s not everyday that the league’s top goalie, the team captain, assistant captain, the NHL’s second leading scorer and several top young players headline such a party.
“The players are here and they’re signing autographs, they’re signing the jerseys,” said Latimer. “We’re hoping that this is a moment that the fans will never forget.
“This interaction…is our way to give a little bit back to our fans as they purchase their holiday gifts.”
The Black & Gold players and fans seemed to agree.
“We’ve had signings,” said Kessel. “But this is great, especially with the support we are getting this season.
“It’s unbelievable all the people who showed up for this and it shows they care a lot about us.”
Thomas seconded the notion.
“This is a lot more people than I think anyone expected,” said Thomas. “It’s great.
“It shows how happy people are with how we are doing this year.”
“This is a special event,” said Drew, one of the hundreds of fans who lined up to meet the Bruins. “This is definitely once in a lifetime getting seven of the top guys on the first place team in the Eastern Conference all together to do something like this with the fans.
“It shows that they really care.”
The Day After Thanksgiving matinee has been a Black & Gold tradition since the 1990-1991 season. Not only will the team be wearing their new predominantly black third jersey for the first time, but the first 10,000 fans in attendance will also receive a commemorative black t-shirt. In addition, all fans are encouraged to come to the TD Banknorth Garden wearing black attire for the game.
Any fan that purchases a third jersey at the Pro Shop through Wednesday, November 26 will receive a personalized autographed picture of a Bruins player of their choice. Fans who purchase the third jersey by calling 877.5BRUINS will also receive an autographed picture.
In total, the Bruins are scheduled to wear this Third Jersey System for 16 games (13 home, three away) during the remainder of the 2008-2009 campaign:
11/28 vs. New York Islanders
11/29 vs. Detroit Red Wings
12/13 vs. Atlanta Thrashers
12/20 vs. Carolina Hurricanes
1/3 vs. Buffalo Sabres
1/10 vs. Carolina Hurricanes
1/19 vs. St. Louis Blues
1/21 @ Toronto Maple Leafs
1/29 vs. New Jersey Devils
2/10 vs. San Jose Sharks
2/24 vs. Florida Panthers
3/5 vs. Phoenix Coyotes
3/15 @ Pittsburgh Penguins
3/31 vs. Tampa Bay Lightning
4/2 vs. Ottawa Senators
4/7 @ Ottawa Senators
The Bruins next game is in Buffalo against the Sabres at 7:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday, November 26. The Bruins return to the TD Banknorth Garden on Friday, November 28 when the clubs hosts the New York Islanders at Noon.