Glen's Got Game
Murray Plays 1,000th NHL Contest
Monday, 03.17.2008 / 11:26 AM / Features
By John Bishop - BostonBruins.com
Try playing an NHL hockey game, with all the abuse a person takes in even a regular season contest, and then multiply it 1,000 times.
On Sunday, Boston Bruins forward Glen Murray, 36, became the 229th person to ever play that many professional matches at hockey's top level.
As per his character, Murray (or Muzz as his teammates call him) was not all that excited to focus on himself before or after his big match versus the Washington Capitals. But what he did say speaks more to why he has lasted so long than any prewritten prose ever could.
"I've been lucky," said Murray, somewhat taken aback by the attention. "And it's pretty special, but I'll look at it down the road.
"Especially at this time of year."
As you know, "This time of year" signifies the Bruins push for a playoff berth and Murray is desperate for another shot at Lord Stanley's Cup.
"We're in a playoff race and we're not really thinking of [individual honors]," said Murray. "We're thinking of wins and that's about it."
Fellow Bruins forward P.J. Axelsson, who himself has played 713 games (all with Boston), talked about how important Glen is to the present incarnation of the Bruins.
"Obviously, everyone thinks of him as a scorer," said Axelsson. "But he's also a tremendous leader. He works his tail off every night.
"And he's good for the kids [on the roster], I'll tell you that much."
The kids, means players like Milan Lucic, David Krejci and Vladimir Sobotka. They were very, very young when Glen scored his first NHL goal in his first game with Boston, back on January 28, 1992 when the Bruins took on the Nordiques in Quebec.
Lucic was three years old, so he probably doesn't remember much about Murray versus the Nordiques, but Muzz certainly does.
"Everybody always remembers their first game, so it was one of those things I'll never forget," he said. "It was different, because I was in Juniors and I just got called up -- an emergency recall or whatever it was called -- and it was in Quebec, which was pretty special."
Who was the goalie for the Nordiques?
"The goalie was Ron Tugnutt and Andy Moog was our goalie," said Muzz, finally with a chuckle. "And yah my first game [I scored], I was lucky."
"Craig Janney [had an assist]."
What did he remember most about his first term with the Bruins, from 1991 to 1995?
"I was so young," he said. "My first go around I was still learning.
"And I am learning everyday, still!"
But that was all the reminiscing that Murray had for the press. His mind quickly turned to the task at hand, getting the B's to the playoffs.
Asked what his most memorable moment of his second go-around with Boston had been, Murray said, "It's to be determined.
"It's not really on my mind right now. We are a team. We [have] a team goal and we're here to get into the playoffs and keep winning games, and see what we can do."