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Bruins Players Continue To Walk The Talk With Inclusion Message

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Boston Bruins

When it comes to fighting for inclusion and against bigotry and racism, the Boston Bruins players continue to walk the talk.

Boston Bruins winger A.J. Greer has become a social media target for Vancouver Canucks fans since he dropped a thunderous hit on and then tuned up Vancouver Canucks forward Visaly Podkolzin in the first period of the Bruins’ 5-2 win on Sunday night. The main gripe from most of the Canucks fans going after Greer has been that Greer chose to fight the 6-foot-1, 190-pound, 21-year-old Podkolzin instead of 6-foot-2, 225-pound veteran defenseman Luke Schenn, who had appeared to challenge Greer before. However, in another sad reflection of the still toxic atmosphere in and around hockey and seemingly every sport, some fans took it too far decided homophobic bigotry was the best way to go after Greer on Monday afternoon.

Good on Greer for exposing this coward and hopefully Instagram did more than throw him in the sin-bin. This was just another example of the Bruins players putting their words into actions.

Ten days ago, when Boston Bruins general manager Don Sweeney announced that he had signed convicted bully (in juvenile court), and controversial defenseman Mitchell Miller, he created a firestorm of criticism and disbelief from not only hockey fans and media, but also his players, led by team captain Patrice Bergeron.

“To stay true to my values, really. What it comes down to and what is important is to stand up for what you think is wrong,” the Bruins captain said after the Bruins signed Miller, a player who was proven to have physically and emotionally abused – with racial epithets – his disabled black classmate Isaiah Meyer-Crothers. “That situation, it goes back to what we’ve built here as an organization, as a team, as a locker room. That is to be inclusive and a locker room of respect and integrity.”

The Boston Bruins captain, who is respected league wide as one of the best and classiest leaders in the game wouldn’t get into more details but he did acknowledge that the response from Bruins fans who were disgusted with this signing was heard and factored into their opinions as well.

“It’s clear that I understand them. That being said, for us, nothing has changed as far as who we are as individuals, as a culture in this locker room, and what our core values are. As much as I understand them, we hear you and we feel like our values remain the same,” Bergeron said of the Bruins fans who let the team have it.”

With 20 years of experience (SiriusXM NHL Network Radio, ESPNBoston, NESN, NHL.com, etc.) covering the Bruins, the NHL, NCAA and junior hockey and more, Jimmy Murphy’s hockey black book is full of Hall of Famers, current players, coaches, management, scouts and a wide array of hockey media personalities that have lived in and around this great game. For 17 of his 20 years as a hockey and sports reporter, Murph covered the Bruins on essentially a daily basis covering their victorious 2011 Stanley Cup run and their 2013 run to the Final as well. Murphy has hosted national and local radio shows and podcasts and also has experience in TV as well.

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