fought with teammates who wouldn't match his fire in practice. He called out
anyone he thought was dogging it. Once, as the players were doing sprints on
stationary bikes, Drury sat next to a freshman who was just going through the
motions. When the drill ended, Drury said, "If that's the way you're going
to do it, why don't you get out of here right now?"
His need to keep
celebrity at a distance remained just as extreme. Drury was a junior when he
met his future wife, Rory, at T's Pub in Boston. It was after a 4--4 tie at BC;
she was there with family. Drury, BU's star, approached her. He told Rory he
had seen her at the game, neglecting to mention he had been playing. "She
didn't want anything to do with me," Drury says. He followed her around the
bar all night. Rory told him she was a freshman at Fairfield University, on the
same campus as his old high school, and he jumped at the connection, throwing
everything he knew at her. He tried charm. He tried to impress. But he never
told her he played hockey.
When Drury went
to get a napkin to take her number, Rory bolted. He caught her at the cab,
begged her to give him her last name. "Manning," she said.
Peyton," he said.
you!" Drury said, slamming the cab door.
He called the
next day, drove down to Fairfield the next weekend. With Ferguson and another
friend he took Rory to dinner. They spent a few hours together, Drury talking
about how he hoped to teach U.S. history, maybe coach baseball, after he
graduated. No one mentioned hockey. During dinner he asked her to go with him
to The Beanpot, Boston's storied annual four-college tournament. Two nights
later she rode up in a van to Boston with Ferguson and three others. They got
to their seats inside the Fleet Center, Rory figuring she'd meet up with her
date then. "Where's Chris?" she said to Ferguson.
there," he pointed.
Drury was out on
ice, number 18. He didn't wave. He never even looked up.
In the lobby of
Buffalo's grand old City Hall, on a lone easel near the elevators leading up to
the mayor's office, a large and dramatic sign has been sending out a message
for the last eight years. Greater Buffalo, it says proudly, has been declared
an "All-America City." But the bulk of the poster is taken up by two
more elusive symbols. First a picture of the Super Bowl trophy, and beneath it
two words: need it. Then the Stanley Cup and the same plea: need it.