Going, going, gone
After trade, Bourque leaves Bruins, rare club loyalty behind
Posted: Monday March 27, 2000 04:19 PM
No NHL defenseman has scored more than Ray Bourque's 395 career regular-season goals. Elsa Hasch/Allsport
By Ryan Hunt, CNNSI.com
Seeing Ray Bourque in a Colorado jersey will almost be like seeing an avalanche in Hawaii. Dan Marino in Minnesota? That's a Fish out of water.
But in the days of PSLs and luxury suites, loyalty is as fleeting as time itself.
In an instant, Bourque's 21 years in Boston came to end Monday, thanks to his trade to the Colorado Avalanche. Marino, who has spent 17 years in Miami, could be the starting quarterback of the Vikings, of all teams, next season.
What in the name of Broadway-Joe-wearing-Rams-gear is going on?
Active players with longest|
tenure with original team
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Examine the career of future Hall of Fame defenseman Bourque, who's known nothing but the gold and black of the B's for more than two decades.
Only Gordie Howe (1,809 points in Detroit), Wayne Gretzky (1,669 in Edmonton) and Steve Yzerman (1,547 in Detroit) have scored more points for their respective teams than the 1,506 that Bourque had with the Bruins.
The 18-time All-Star is the only player in NHL history to score 10 or more goals in 21 straight seasons.
But forget the stats. Before Monday's trade, the 39-year-old Bourque was a sports rarity, spending more than 20 years with the Bruins.
Players who spent entire 20-year|
career with one team
In NHL history, only five guys played their entire career of more than 20 years in one uniform -- Alex Delvecchio (Red Wings), Stan Mikita (Blackhawks), Henri Richard (Canadiens), George Armstrong (Maple Leafs) and Jean Beliveau (Canadiens).
In fact, Bourque was only 41 games shy of tying Delvecchio's mark of games played entirely with one team (1,549).
When you encompass the four major sports, the 20-year tenure list doesn't grow much longer.
No NBA player has ever played all 20 years with one team. Only Rams lineman Jackie Slater has done it in the NFL. In baseball, only 15 guys have reached that level of longevity with one team.
The 21 years Bourque spent in Boston were the longest active tenure by a player with his original team. Fittingly, the torch is now passed to man who knows a lot about longevity -- Cal Ripken, who is beginning his 20th season with the Baltimore Orioles.
But unlike most of the 20-year vets, Bourque has never won a championship -- the sole catalyst for the trade in the first place.
Most games without winning Stanley Cup
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Bourque has played 1,518 regular-season games without hoisting the Stanley Cup, the most in NHL history and 86 more than No. 2 Mike Gartner.
To put in perspective how long Bourque has been in the NHL, consider this.
When Bourque entered the league, Colorado's NHL team was called the Rockies, who spent three more losing seasons in Denver before moving to New Jersey. Then Denver went 13 years without an NHL franchise before the Quebec Nordiques moved to Colorado in 1995-96 and were renamed the Avalanche.
The Avs won the Cup in their first year in Denver. Bourque only hopes he can do the same.