Whether player, coach or team staffer, Wednesday night was a night of solidarity.
That was a point made unmistakably clear by Bruins coach Claude Julien , even after a 3-2 loss to the Sabres at TD Garden.
Julien was asked about his reaction to the fans singing the national anthem and the “We are Boston” chants throughout the game.
“Well, I think like everybody else, it was pretty emotional,” Julien said. “In a way, it made you feel proud of this city and of our fans of this solidarity that was shown throughout this whole thing. Certainly, like I said, proud of this city for how they responded.
“The national anthem was pretty touching. And, obviously, everything that they did. I remember the video, I remember the national anthem and we even saw those people up there on the screen in the TV timeouts. And looking up there and realizing that those guys have done an unbelievable job for this city throughout this crisis and we should be grateful to a lot of people and we should also feel for the people that are going through it right now. I think we still do.”
Did it ever felt like a normal hockey game to Julien and his staff?
“I don’t know,” Julien said. “I think through it all, our guys really wanted to battle hard and make it happen. We had a lot of chances and, sure we probably didn’t bury those and we’d like to be better in regards to that, but the main goal is to go out there and really play well for the cause and I thought we played a really decent game. Unfortunately, sometimes bounces don’t go your way. They tied it up late in the game and I thought we probably deserved to win at that point.”
Then Julien provided further perspective on what the Bruins are really thinking about right now when asked about the getting past the emotion of the night and the disappointing end-result of a shootout loss.
“Well you don’t, because as you know we’re still grieving over what’s happened with the people going through it,” Julien said.”And I don’t think that tomorrow’s going to be any different, and I don’t think the day after is going to be different. We just have to bear with it, be strong, and play hard. And like I said it’s not about trying to make this city proud of your team tonight, but every night. We need to go out there Friday and do the same thing. You know, we need some strength and everybody needs to chip in.
“You’ve got a job to do but you hear it. And those are all the things that like I said earlier make you proud of what’s happened here.”