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Bruins unveil 2016 NHL Winter Classic jersey

by Matt Kalman

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins, hosts of the 2016 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, on Saturday unveiled the jersey they'll be wearing against the Montreal Canadiens on Jan. 1 at Gillette Stadium.

In front of a couple thousand season-ticket holders, president Cam Neely presented captain Zdeno Chara, goaltender Tuukka Rask and center David Krejci in the black jerseys with gold stripes on the sleeves.

(Photo: Boston Bruins)

The Bruins are the first team to host the Winter Classic twice. For the 2010 game against the Philadelphia Flyers at Fenway Park, the Bruins wore brown and gold as a tribute to their original colors. Each part of the jersey honored a different era in franchise history. This time around, the Bruins wanted to honor their roots.

"It's a treat any time you get to work on a new jersey. We've been fortunate to do two for the Winter Classic now," Neely said during the event at the Seaport World Trade Center. "The fact that we're an Original Six team … and being that we're playing another Original Six team, our biggest rival in the League, we thought we'd go back to when the Bruins first came into the League, 1924, so the crest itself is a takeoff of the original Bruins jersey. The striping is another thing from one of our original jerseys. And the neckline is more like a sweater from when the jersey was like an actual sweater."

The crewneck jersey should keep the Bruins a little warmer on what might be a frigid day.

"Obviously they wanted to make it more like a traditional winter kind of sweater. So they added that collar," Chara said. "And I think it looks really good. It's comfortable."

The crest features the words Boston and Bruins sandwiched around the bear mascot. It's sewn in felt and chenille materials similar to the original crest from 1924. The numbers were developed to mimic the numbers worn in the Bruins' early days and are a retro off-white color.

"I like it a lot," Rask said. "I think they did a great job of combining the original crest and the black and gold there."

Krejci had rave reviews for the jersey as well.

"Well the fabric is pretty cool for the numbers. And also the bear up front," he said.

In 2010, the Bruins defeated the Flyers 2-1 in overtime. This time they'll play their biggest rivals, the Canadiens, at the home of the NFL's New England Patriots. Regardless of the outcome, the Bruins will look good while doing battle with Montreal.

"It's very beautiful," Chara said. "Honestly, it's very simple but right to the point. Like Cam said, this is a follow up on the very first jersey from 1924. Obviously the colors are the current colors but the crest is basically right from the first time the Bruins started playing. There's so much history and so much pride and passion in that jersey that makes it very special to wear it."

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