When you have an organization as rich in history as the Boston Bruins, it’s easy for players to slip through the cracks of the memory bank of time. Some are redemption stories, others are veterans at the end of their career looking for one last taste of glory, it’s time to shine some light on forgotten Bruins.
Number 5- Bryan Berard
Best known for a serious eye injury that brought his promising career to a crawl, Bryan Berard bounced around the NHL quite a bit later in his career. The former Calder Trophy winner missed the entire 2000-01 while undergoing multiple surgeries to repair his vision. He made his NHL return during the 2001-02 season with the Rangers, but disappointing play forced the Rangers to release him from his contract. Berard joined the Bruins for the 2002-03 season and started to find his pre-injury form. He scored 10 goals and 38 points in 80 games. The Bruins and Berard went to salary arbitration in the summer of 2003, but the Bruns had no interest in matching the $2.5 million he was awarded, making him a free agent. Later, Berard signed with the Chicago Blackhawks.
Number 4- Brian Propp
Brian Propp is known for his ten-and-a-half season stint with the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1980’s. He saw his decade-long run come to an end in early 1990. The Flyers were struggling during the 1989-90 season so then-general manager Bobby Clarke traded Propp to the Boston Bruins in exchange for a second round pick. Propp helped the Bruins to the Stanley Cup Final, but lost to the Oilers in five games. In the offseason, Propp signed with the Minnesota North Stars, ending his Bruins tenure after just 34 games.
Number 3- Wade Redden
Famously signing a massive, six-year, $39 million contract with the New York Rangers in the summer of 2008 that ended in a tumultuous compliance buyout, Wade Redden was looking to get his career back on track in the summer of 2012. He signed a one-year contract with the St. Louis Blues. He played in 23 games before he was dealt to the Boston Bruins at the 2013 trade deadline. He played in six regular season games, going pointless, and five playoff games with one goal and one assist. Redden announced his retirement from the NHL in the summer, thus ending his short-lived NHL comeback.
Number 2- Rick Tocchet
After long stints with the Flyers and Penguins, Tocchet played for three different teams in three seasons. The Penguins traded him to LA in the summer of 1994, and two years later the Kings sent him to Boston in exchange for Kevin Stevens. He played 27 games for Boston in 1995-96, scoring 24 points. Tocchet also dressed for five Bruins playoff games, before they were eliminated in the first round by the Florida Panthers. The following season, Tocchet played in 40 of the Bruins games, but Boston found themselves at the bottom of the NHL, so they traded Tocchet to the Capitals at the trade deadline. Tocchet played 67 games in Beantown during the Bruin’s worst stint in 30 years.
Number 1- Jacques Plante
One of the greatest, most innovative goaltenders of all-time, Plante is best known for his long tenure with the Montreal Canadiens. After his 11 seasons in Montreal came to an end, he saw stints in St. Louis, Toronto, and later the Boston Bruins. The Leafs traded Plante to Boston in March of 1973 for a first round pick. He played in eight regular season games and two playoff games. This would be his last games in the NHL. Plante played in 31 more WHA games before retiring permanently after his youngest son died.
Turco spent a decade in the Dallas Stars’ crease throughout the 2000’s before his play started to slip. The Stars chose not to re-sign him following the 2009-10 season, so he signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Blackhawks, replacing Stanley Cup Champion Antti Niemi. His was quickly overtaken as the starter by Corey Crawford, and was not re-signed in the offseason. After starting the 2011-12 season in Austria, he was signed by the Boston Bruins after Tuukka Rask was going to miss two months with an injury. Turco suited up for five games, but because he was signed after the trade deadline, he was not eligible to play in the 2012 playoffs. He retired after the season and joined the NHL Network as an analyst.
Zhamnov had a 13-year career under his belt, mainly split between the Winnipeg Jets and Chicago Blackhawks. He had a 20 game stint with the Flyers before heading back to Russia during the NHL lockout. Zhamnov returned to the NHL in 2005-06, signing a contract with the Boston Bruins. He only played in 24 games before he was placed on long-term IR, which ultimately ended his career.
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)
photo credit: gantland.com