Stanley Cup Today: The wait is almost over
It’s the end of the road in the Stanley Cup.
A postseason that started for the Bruins on April 11 — more than two months ago — ends tonight at TD Garden with a Game 7 against the Blues, a series that has lasted longer than Wimbledon and included more than a few break points.
So as we wait for puck drop (never 8 p.m., as you know), some observations from the three games at Enterprise Center in St. Louis that won’t include mention of the Bruins’ power play, the Blues’ thuggery, Zdeno Chara’s jaw, Tuukka Rask’s brilliance, or dubious officiating . . .
■ Mad man: The biggest St. Louis fan, Jon Hamm, was spotted at each game, but he may have created the ultimate Stanley Cup faux pas prior to a potential Cup-clinching Game 6. Hamm prematurely shaved his playoff beard.
■ Office parties: Blues super fan Jenna Fischer (Pam) attended Games 3 and 6 in St. Louis — both Bruins wins. Bruins super fan John Krasinski (Jim) was at Game 5 in Boston — and we know how that turned out.
■ Golden Brett: There’s no equivalent of the “banner captain” in St. Louis, but ahead of Game 6, the Blues trotted out Brett Hull, one of the game’s greatest players, and fellow Blues legends Bob Plager and Bernie Federko to lead the “Let’s Go Blues” chant. Let’s just say a spirited Hull was having the time of his life.
■ Numbers game: The Blues have seven retired numbers hanging from the Enterprise Center rafters: 2, 3, 5, 8, 11, 16, and 24. Interestingly, all but No. 11 are also retired by Boston (where No. 11 was worn by Swoop Carleton, Shaky Walton, Steve Kasper, and Bobby Carpenter among others). I find it interesting, anyway.
■ Band out of Boston: The Blues’ pregame highlight video montage is accompanied by Aerosmith’s “Dream On.”
■ Play Gloria: Heard only once postgame, after Game 4. But Laura Branigan’s representatives (fans earlier this season had to be reminded that the singer died 15 years ago) have been on hand at Enterprise Center for every game, including the previous three watch parties. And “Gloria” merchandise can be found in every nook and cranny of the building.
■ Denver reboot: “Take Me Home, Country Roads” has been played in the third period at every game since February. Again, an odd choice; the John Denver classic is the state song of West Virginia. According to Jason Pippi, the Blues’ game operations director, “Sweet Caroline’’ was the first choice, but fans felt the song wasn’t so good, so good. “It didn’t stick anywhere nearly as much as ‘Country Roads,’ ’’ Pippi said. Isn’t the other one taken anyway?
■ Charles Glenn, who had been singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at Blues games for 19 seasons, delivered a stirring rendition prior to Game 6, his farewell performance. Glenn, who has multiple sclerosis, is retiring.
10:30 a.m. — Bruins morning skate, followed by media availability (TD Garden)
11:30 a.m. — Blues morning skate, followed by media availability (TD Garden)
8 p.m. — 2019 Stanley Cup Final Game 7 (NBC)
Fans looking to enjoy the last game of the series with other fans can watch at the Bruins’ training facility. Here are the details.
During Game 7, look for a special package of live stats and game updates plus commentary from Globe reporters and columnists on BostonGlobe.com’s homepage and sports page
The Globe will send six reporters/columnists, three photographers, and an editor to Game 7