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Enjoying Banner Six, Working on Seven

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
BOSTON -- As players, the B's acknowledge that on Thursday their emotions will run the gamut.

The real trick of it will be how to remain focused on the Philadelphia Flyers and the two points that are up for grabs as the regular season commences after the B's sixth banner rises to the rafters.

Bruins forward Gregory Campbell said he feels that the team has already adjusted to the changes in the locker room and has long since switched from celebration mode to game-mode.

"It’s been a long but short summer for us and when I say long I mean we’ve had days with the Cup, we’ve had...ring ceremonies and Cup parties and parades and things like that," explained Campbell. "I think the most special thing about [Thursday] night is that, other than the parade, it’s pretty much the first time we get to share the Stanley Cup with our fans and I think that’s going to be a special moment as well.

"Adding our place in this team’s history is also very important to each and every one of us, but we’re all professional enough in here to realize that this is the start of the season. The new season. And what we did last year, 29 other teams, and if you add us 30, are trying to do the same thing this year," he said.

Campbell noted that the B's only had to look down the hall to the visitors locker room to enhance their motivation.

"Philly has always been a big rival for our team and I don’t think the taste that we left in their mouths last year is very good," said Campbell. "They have something to prove coming in here and we have to be ready for that.

"They made some changes over the off-season and they’re looking to make a statement, so as defending champions we are also looking to make a statement.

"We believe that we’re just as good of a team as last year -— if not better -— and tomorrow night that’s where the process starts."

But until the puck drops, the B's can enjoy the fruits of last season accomplishment and Campbell described his thoughts after receiving his ring at the Boston Harbor Hotel.

"First things first, there are a lot of diamonds on that thing; it’s a big hunk of jewelry there," said Campbell with a wide smile. "It’s special; a really special piece.

"The ring is something that symbolizes...a championship team and to actually receive the ring and put it on, it’s a unique feeling. It’s just the same as lifting the Cup on the ice after the game; with a lot of emotions and there’s a lot of hard work that goes into that," he said.

But the hard work continues. And Campbell and thanks to their new jewelry, the B's have a constant reminder of how special a Stanley Cup victory really feels.

"I got a BBM message from [Milan Lucic] as soon as we opened those boxes saying, 'You know what? It was all worth it,' after we got that ring.

"It’s the first of hopefully many, but it’s important to enjoy that as it was a very special night and the organization did a great job."

And as far as Campbell is concerned, the B's have already done a good job toward a seventh banner as each member of the team is perfectly capable of playing a pivotal role.

"Yeah. I mean we spent a couple of days up in Maine there and it doesn’t take long to realize that although the goal there is to create chemistry and to bond as a team, the bonds are already there," he said. "With the guys that they brought in—the organization does a tremendous job of bringing in good people and obviously good players, but people that will mesh with this group and that’s half the battle.

"It’s one thing to be a good player and contribute on the ice, but you have to contribute in other ways as well and that’s what everybody does on this team. It was very—the integration process for these new players is very smooth. I just look back a year and realize how tight-knit and close this team really is.

"For me to have to have gone through that a year ago makes it more important to reach out to the new players as well here this year and accept them into this so-called family. We only lost a few guys. Those were big pieces of our puzzle last year, but the core group remains here and as I said, the three or four new guys that have come in have already adapted very well and seem to be contributing a lot to this team."

Just like Campbell did last year.
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