The Boston Bruins are planning for an emotional home game Wednesday night when the team takes the ice against the Buffalo Sabres, a matchup that was rescheduled from Monday because of the marathon bombings that had taken place in the city earlier in the day. It will be the first game the Bruins will play since the bombings.
To mark the occasion, the team donated 80 tickets to police, firefighters, emergency personnel and other first responders to attend the game against the Sabres, and pledged $100,000 to One Fund Boston, a charity set up to help the victims and their families, according to a report from Joe McDonald of ESPNBoston.com. Another $50,000 will be donated to the Fund by TD Garden, the NHL and NHLPA and each player on the Bruins will wear a "Boston Strong" decal on their helmet.
Bruins coach Claude Julien said Wednesday night will mark an opportunity for the team to help people heal and "smile again," adding that the team will have to focus and fight emotions to make things better for the people of Boston. The ESPN story further quotes Julien:
"The one thing I sense from our team is we have the ability to maybe help people heal and find some reason to smile again by representing our city properly. To me, this is a time when you're proud to be associated with a professional team. You're fighting with emotions and you're fighting with focus and you've got to be strong in those situations. The best thing we can do right now is really focus on our job to make things better for the people of Boston. We know that sports are a great way to help people heal, and not just our sport, but every sport in the city. We're in the entertainment business and that's what we do. At the end of the day, we've got a job to do here and we certainly plan on doing it well."
Added Bruins forward Daniel Paille:
"If you can't get excited for this game you shouldn't be playing. There's obviously a lot to play for tonight, and for us, we not only need to be ready, but we need to show that we want to support everyone in the city."