By: Benjamin Aliber | Follow me on Twitter @bpaliber24
In 2003 the Boston Bruins drafted a player named Patrice Bergeron with their 45th overall pick. Nineteen years and five months later, 7,093 days since, and 233 months to the exact date of his selection, the future Bruins legend recorded his 1,000 career point with an assist on a goal scored by long time line-mate, Brad Marchand during in a 5-3 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Patrice Bergeron recorded his first NHL goal on October 18, 2003, against the Los Angeles Kings in a 4-3 victory, a rookie season in which we would record 39 points in 79 games. If you told me 19 years ago he would go on to accomplish the mountain of accolades currently tied to his name; I would have called you nuts.
While 2004-2005 saw Bergeron playing in Providence for the AHL Bruins due to the NHL lockout, one year later, he exploded back onto the NHL scene with a 73-point campaign giving him 112 points in just two seasons.
Three years later, in 2009-10, he hit 250 points. In the 2014-15 season, it was number 500, and in 2018-19, he recorded a career-high 79 points catapulting him passed the 750 mark. But all that led to tonight, Monday, November 21, 2022.
Bergeron skated into the zone and sent a chip pass to Brad Marchand, who was by his side the entire way. Marchand did a quick stop and sent a saucer pass to a crashing Jake DeBrusk, who threw it on the net for a juicy rebound. Marchand circled around, batted the flying puck to the ice, and roofed it. It took a second, but then he immediately realized what had happened, the millennial mark!
His teammates crashed over the board to congratulate him on this monumental accomplishment, and while this is not an act to overlook, the man whose name and number are soon to be raised to the rafters has many more accolades to be proud of.
A member of Boston’s 2011 Stanley Cup Champion team, a five-time winner of the Frank J. Selke Trophy (2012, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2022), the most in NHL history! The 2013 King Clancy Memorial Award recipient, a three-time All-Star game nominee (2015, 2016, 2022), and the 2021 Mark Messier Leadership Award winner.
Leadership is nothing new to Bergeron, who became the captain of the Boston Bruins on January 7, 2021, after longtime teammate and former captain, Zdeno Chara signed with the Washington Capitals. Though Chara is gone, the legacy and impact are not lost. The Bruins are off to their best start in franchise history, with a regular season record of 17-2-0, and their captain is playing the best hockey of his life, with 18 points now in 19 games, and the majority of that is thanks to Bergeron’s captainship.
After the game, Bergeron was asked about his accomplishment and what it meant to him.
1,235 games later, and what many are referring to as being Patrice Bergeron’s “last dance,” if this truly is it, he seems to be enjoying every second of it.
The Boston Bruins next game is Wednesday, November 23, against the Florida Panthers, with puck drop at 7pm.