It was a retirement ceremony quite unlike any we’ve seen before. In a twist of irony, it was was the head coach who was choked up and seemed to be having trouble finding the right words, while the retiring player was upbeat and positive, and asking all to consider yesterday a celebration, and gladly accepting congratulations for his great career.
Tedy Bruschi was one of a kind on the football field, a fact that was evident by the words of his head coach, Bill Belichick, who was as emotional as most have ever seen him, referring to Bruschi as “the perfect player.”
Christopher L. Gasper says that “perhaps no player better represented the gridiron gestalt that defines the Belichick-era Patriots than Bruschi.” Ian R. Rapoport looks at the retirement of a “big-play maven.” Shalise Manza Young has Bruschi ready to live life after 13 years with the Patriots. Andy Vogt says that this decision, while difficult, felt right for Bruschi. Brian MacPherson says that in some ways, Bruschi’s work ethic might’ve overshadowed his talent. Rich Garven says that Bruschi is one of the rare few who get to step off the pedestal. Jeff Howe has Bruschi able to walk away with all his goals achieved.
Bob Ryan says that Bruschi “gets it” in a way that athletes seldom do. Ron Borges notes that “seemed uncannily able to make not only the physical plays but also the intelligent ones that led his favorite coach, Bill Belichick, to call him “the perfect player” yesterday.” Jeff Jacobs says Bruschi is what it means to be a champion. Jim Donaldson says that Bruschi will go right into the Patriots Hall of Fame in 2013. Mark Farinella notes that there were more smiles than tears yesterday, which is how Bruschi wanted it.
Steve Buckley says that Bruschi matured along with the Patriots franchise. Bill Reynolds looks at the celebration of Bruschi’s career, big heard and his will. Ron Chimelis says that Bruschi’s everyman presence will be missed among his teammates and fans. Jennifer Toland has Bruschi walking away with goals achieved and career fulfilled. Tim Weisberg says that it was all about heart for the perfect Patriot. Christopher Price says that Bruschi’s relentless spirit of overachievement rubbed off on everyone with whom he came in contact with in his 13 years in New England.
Karen Guregian says that Bruschi served as a role model to both his teammates and fans. Young talks to Bruschi’s agent, Brad Blank, who had some contentious back-and-forth sessions with Bruschi prior to becoming his agent. Hector Longo thinks that it is no coincidence that the Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since Bruschi had his stroke. Guregian looks at the emotional tribute paid by Bill Belichick, who showed a softer side yesterday. Steve Krause says that Bruschi was the consummate pro in all facets of the game.
Gasper has Bruschi’s teammates ready to carry on and run with the torch that he has passed to them. Guregian has more from teammates past and present on Bruschi. Glen Farley has Bruschi handing off the torch to Mayo and others. Farinella examines the locker-room void that will be left by the retirement. Thomas Grillo notes that Bruschi should be seeing plenty of endorsement opportunities coming his way. Jessica Fargen says that Bruschi’s work with stroke issues makes in an inspiration to many.
Chimelis looks at UMass offensive tackle Vladimir Ducasse, who appears to have an NFL career on the horizon.
Rapoport’s notebook says that all signs indicate that Tom Brady should be ready for the season opener. Kevin McNamara’s Patriots Journal says that Bruschi’s legacy will live on in Jerod Mayo. Vogt’s notebook has Brady clearing the air – somewhat- on his shoulder injury. Toland’s notebook has more on Brady’s status, while who his backup will be remains unclear. Longo has more on Brady ‘expecting’ to be fine for the opener. Farley’s notebook has Brady’s sense of humor remaining intact.
A pair of articles on J.D. Drew leads off the Red Sox coverage today. Alex Katz on WEEI.com has a look at the misinterpreted Red Sox outfielder, and how his past has made him the lightning rod that he is today. Amalie Benjamin has the Red Sox needing Drew to keep up the torrid pace he set in August, when he hit .329 with six home runs.
Alex Speier has strikeout pitcher Jon Lester wishing that the fans would put up “K” cards for him. Tom Caron looks at the contrast between Bruschi and Paul Byrd. Lenny Megliola has the Sox desperately looking for a reliable third starter behind Lester and Josh Beckett. Joe McDonald looks at likely callup candidates now that the rosters can be expanded.
Joe Haggerty has Alex Gonzalez helping out the Sox both on the field and at the plate since coming over from the Reds. Mike Fine says that Gonzalez is loving life back with the Red Sox. John Tomase says that the Red Sox appear to be a good bet to be playing in October.
Steve Bulpett has the Celtics finally set to sign Marquis Daniels.
Fluto Shinzawa looks at he Bruins launching the 2009-10 season with their first informal practice session yesterday at Ristuccia Arena in Wilmington.
Michael Whitmer has Vijay Singh hoping to repeat past success at the Deutsche Bank Championship at TPC Boston this weekend.