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Jacobs: "A wonderful, wonderful experience..."

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
BOSTON -- Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs took the opportunity to talk to the press on Sunday prior to the team's practice in TD Garden.

"You can’t have any more pride than I enjoy this morning," said Jacobs. "I feel just very lucky and very fortunate to be where I am.

"As a fan, as a custodian of a great franchise, this is a wonderful, wonderful experience. I think I’m very lucky to have the leadership both on the ice and in the back of the house so to speak. I can’t speak enough for the total organization and how it’s moved forward.

"I’m so proud of what they’ve achieved," he said.

Asked what he thought was the difference between this incarnation of the Bruins and teams that had failed to achieve in the playoffs, Jacobs said, "I think that Peter [Chiarelli, the Bruins general manager] has put together a dream team -- his dream and as he saw it within the parameters that they have to work."

Jacobs praised Bruins President Cam Neely.

"Cam is a great local leader, he gives of himself to charities and to the community. But he comes here because...he is, a great hockey personality," said Jacobs.

"We can describe it, we can talk about it and I look at a guy like [Milan] Lucic when he was a rookie and he came out and he hit. You knew he was out there, he hit hard, and you said ‘that’s what a Bruin should be like.’ Well Cam is that and then some, because he represents the history of the sport, the history of the game.

"We always said when he was on the ice, you knew one thing. It was going to be serious hockey, you knew you stand a good chance of scoring a goal and winning. And he does that at a team level now, he does that at an organizational level.

"He brings a lot of wisdom and a lot of leadership," he said.

The B's owner also leveled praise at his head coach Claude Julien for his own leadership.

"You have to admire the way when things don’t go your way he doesn’t say woe is me, which we’ve saw throughout the playoffs with some people," said Jacobs. "He says we've got to [not] get down, we've got to work harder.

"I think that’s just a wonderful attribute."

Of course, Jacobs spoke about the players, as well.

"As a fan you look at it and you say look what happened Friday night in this building and it’s what this city deserves and it’s what this fan base is long overdue [for]," he said. "And I just commend the guys on the ice for what they got done."

Jacobs described the Bruins progression over the length of Chiarelli's tenure.

"Going through, getting into the playoffs, I remember we went to Montreal and we lost it in Montreal. Then to come back the following year and beat them," said Jacobs. "The following year and move on to the next level [vs. Carolina] and then lose to Philadelphia.

"These are life experiences that we’ve taken to heart, we’ve grown with. And this is not an overnight wonder. This is a team that has evolved and built on their experience, both good and bad. And that’s very apparent to me to watch them grow the way they have.

"And I don’t want to be dismissive of anybody that has contributed here. Because each one of these guys, you look a twenty-eight minutes of Chara and [Dennis] Seidenberg, people like that. This is tough, tough hockey at its very basics. That game, the game on Friday night from a fan standpoint was the penultimate of great hockey games -- 1-0 -- I mean it wasn’t that it was one nothing, it was the way it was played. No penalties, everything going straight forward, everybody thinking about that penalty could cost us this series. So I think it was disciplined hockey at its best.

"I thought it was great hockey," added Jacobs. "This city thought it was great hockey. That’s more important than me, than anything else...that the fans came out the way they did and that they responded the way they did.

"I couldn’t have been more pleased with it."

But there's yet another level to come and Jacobs said that achieving the opportunity to compete for the Stanley Cub validates the work of everyone in the organization.

"It does validate that we’re filling the holes with the right people and bringing the right organization together," said Jacobs. "It validates the quality of the management and the leadership...not just at the top but throughout the organization.

"From the player on the ice, you take Zdeno Chara and his leadership is indispensable. You take a Peter [Chiarelli] or a Claude [Julien] holding to his discipline and all that he brings to it that a Peter does and then a Cam [Neely].

"I think the organization from the top to bottom has evolved into a singular objective," explained Jacobs. They've coalesced.

"I’m very proud of them. I’m very proud of what they’ve accomplished."
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