Hockey players are a different breed of tough. It’s the perception surrounding the game, and it’s accurate. Every year, reports will emerge that a player was playing through several broken bones, lacerations, and any other type of injury you can think up.
Zdeno Chara is no different. The gigantic Slovakian is as tough as they come, one of the many reasons he’s earned the adoration of Boston faithful. But this is way beyond anything else he’s done. Chara took a puck to the face in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, and didn’t step onto the ice again despite returning to the bench. It was reported after the game that Chara had a broken jaw, and most assumed he was done for the year. On Thursday, however, there were rumblings the defenseman may yet still play.
These rumors haven’t yet been confirmed, but Chara is a stubborn guy. He’s going to do everything else that comes along with being a professional hockey player, playing status be damned. Including media obligations. You may be wondering how he can do that with a broken jaw, and you would be correct to wonder that. That doesn’t stop a man of Chara’s determination, though. Unable to open his mouth or speak, he will communicate to the press in the most essential form of non-verbal communication: the written word.
I’d first like to thank Chara for his dedication to our craft and going all the way to ensure we get questions in. The press does appreciate it. But even we acknowledge this is far and above the call of duty. Out of any reasons to refuse to speak to the media, an inability to speak would rank as one of the best.
Still, inconveniences such as a shattered jaw isn’t stopping Chara from fulfilling his media obligations, and it’s hard to see it stopping him from getting some ice time. The Bruins will need every man they can spare against a feisty Blues team hungry for a title.