Patrice Bergeron provides candid response to Bruins signing Mitchell Miller

The Boston Bruins pleasure themselves on tradition, and no participant on the present roster has accomplished extra to ascertain that welcoming, inclusive setting than Patrice Bergeron.

It is a culture that was largely established in 2006 with the arrival of Zdeno Chara, and the distinctive management, compassion and inclusiveness he displayed as crew captain for effectively over a decade. Bergeron, who at present serves as crew captain and is likely one of the franchise’s best gamers, helped Chara construct that sort of tradition and setting. 

When gamers come to the Bruins from different groups, they’re amazed on the management and togetherness of the locker room. There’s a excessive customary of character that Bergeron and the opposite veterans maintain each participant to.

Don Sweeney sheds light on reasoning behind Bruins signing Mitchell Miller

And that is one of many explanation why the Bruins’ decision to sign defenseman Mitchell Miller on Friday goes in opposition to all the things the crew has constructed during the last 20 years.

Miller in 2016 was convicted in juvenile courtroom of bullying a Black classmate with developmental disabilities when he was 14 years previous. Miller was drafted by the Arizona Coyotes within the fourth spherical of the 2020 NHL Draft, however they released him after more details surfaced about how Miller and a classmate bullied and mistreated one other classmate, Isaiah Meyer-Crothers.


Bergeron was requested Saturday in Toronto earlier than the Bruins’ sport in opposition to the Maple Leafs in regards to the crew signing Miller. He gave an sincere response.

“I used to be requested by Don (Bruins GM Don Sweeney) near per week in the past for my opinion. I had my considerations,” Bergeron informed reporters. “I shared my opinion. In a approach, I used to be not essentially agreeing with it. To be sincere with you, the tradition that we’ve constructed right here goes in opposition to that sort of conduct. We’re a crew that’s constructed one thing about character, character individuals and people. What he did, clearly, is unacceptable and we don’t stand by that.

“For me, I do know for myself, in any case, on this locker room, we’re all about inclusion, variety, respect. These are key phrases and core values that we have now. We count on guys to put on this jersey to be high-character individuals with integrity and respect. That’s how they need to be performing.

“My understanding is he’s going to place within the work in growth packages and group packages to higher himself. It’s as much as him to try this. That’s it. From my standpoint, it’s a hockey operations resolution. For myself, we will management what we will management. Honestly, hopefully there’s some development and alter. If it’s the identical 14-year-old that might be strolling into this locker room, he wouldn’t be accepted and needed and welcomed on this locker room, to be sincere with you. That’s my stand on it.”

Bergeron wasn’t the one participant who shared his considerations Saturday.

“It’s powerful. It’s a extremely arduous matter,” Bruins ahead Nick Foligno informed reporters in Toronto. “Initially, the group shouldn’t be going to do one thing that might jeopardize (the crew tradition). However in saying that, it’s not one thing anybody on this room stands for. The tradition we’ve constructed and these guys have constructed earlier than I obtained right here, is certainly one of inclusion. I feel it goes in opposition to that. I perceive he was 14 when he made this error. Nevertheless it’s arduous for us to swallow as a result of we take loads of pleasure in right here, in the way in which we act, the way in which we stock ourselves, what it’s to be a Bruin. In order that was a troublesome factor to listen to for our group.

“I’m not going to mislead you. I don’t suppose any man was too completely happy due to how proud we’re to say it is a group that cares so much about ourselves, and the way we stock ourselves and the way we deal with individuals. In order that was, for lots of fellows, particularly the blokes wh have been right here, a troublesome capsule to swallow. In the identical gentle, I don’t suppose the group’s ever not searching for the perfect pursuits of us.

“However I feel we have now loads of considerations. This child must reply for these and must show to everyone and himself, particularly if he desires to get on this room, that he’s a modified man. We hope he works towards that. However proper now, our room is extra frightened in regards to the group in right here and what we’re doing. It’s a particular factor we’ve obtained occurring right here. We’re not going to let one thing like that ever come into our room.”


Regardless of these considerations from crew leaders, the Bruins went forward and signed Miller anyway. 

And the Bruins did not even seek the advice of with the NHL earlier than signing him, as league commissioner Gary Bettman revealed Saturday. Bettman additionally mentioned Miller shouldn’t be eligible to play within the NHL proper now, and that “I can’t let you know that he’ll ever be eligible to come back into the NHL.”

The Bruins have dealt with this example in simply in regards to the worst approach potential. 

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