Sunday marks the 50th Anniversary of Bobby Orr’s Stanley Cup winning goal.
He doesn’t give many interviews. But Bobby Orr did sit down for a recent talk about his upcoming book, his lingering injuries, and Alan Eagleson.
The Boston Globe has been running stories leading up to a special Mother’s Day (see below).
Matt Porter writes:
In the decades since the Big, Bad Bruins first took over this town, some of the tales have become as worn as a leather pair of Tacks. Derek Sanderson was asked to share something from that time that we haven’t heard.
“That’s going to be tough,’’ he replied. “Fifty years, I think we’ve pretty well covered it all.’’
True to form, he had a good one ready. Before Game 4 of the 1970 Stanley Cup Final, the shaggy-haired center swaggered into the old Boston Garden in a tuxedo, surely in the flowery mod style he brought to the buttoned-down NHL of the day. If there was a party that night, and he was certain there would be, he wanted to be properly attired.
When Sanderson arrived, he recalled, “The guy said, ‘Aww, what are you doing?’
“Teddy Green said to me, ‘What are you going to do if we lose this?’ I said, ‘I never thought of that. I’ll wear a sweat shirt home.’ ’’
Hockey fans all over know the rest of the story.
How later that Mother’s Day, the Bruins’ dressing room was doused in champagne after Sanderson fed Bobby Orr. The next morning, they all paraded through the frenzied streets of Boston, and Johnny “Pie’’ McKenzie doused Mayor Kevin White with a pitcher of beer at City Hall. Orr and Sanderson never made it to the rally. They were hidden in the mayor’s office, after outracing a throng of adoring young fans to safety.
How Sanderson, whose off-ice exploits earned as much ink as his fierce penalty killing, spun out of control in a haze of booze and drugs and was out of hockey at age 32. How he attained sobriety and resurrected his life, became a sharp-tongued color commentator and financial adviser, and began to tell his cautionary tale. How he remains as beloved as any Bruin who didn’t wear No. 4.
Sanderson, who turns 74 next month, spoke to local reporters on a video call Tuesday, in advance of Sunday’s 50th anniversary of the ’70 Cup win. On that Black and Gold musketeer squad — all for one, one for all — he was the swashbuckling center who made The Pass to set up The Goal. He still tsk-tsks St. Louis defenseman Jean-Guy Talbot, who was at the side of the goal, for reaching too far toward him as Orr swooped in behind.
“You make a play, and you hope it works,’’ he said. “It was a lot of fun. Exciting moment and a great time. We just didn’t realize how popular we were.’’
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