Found January 27, 2013 on Boston Sports Then & Now:
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Most of you probably read the headline and thought  this dude is smokin’ the “whacky tobacky”! What about Zdeno Chara? Tyler Seguin? Patrice Bergeron? All of the aforementioned players are all good candidates to be the Black & Gold ambassador. Chara is the team’s captain and helped revive the franchise upon his arrival back in 2006. Tyler Seguin, has ALL-WORLD skills (just ask the Swiss League) and has the marketable boyish good looks that make the ladies swoon. Patrice Bergeron has done nothing but shown silent leadership and class since he joined the Bruins as an 18 year old rookie. Then there is Shawn Thornton. He doesn’t have the offensive skills of a first liner (except this shootout goal…this was FILTHY). He is not a cover boy as his face shows the scars of battle since he entered the league back in 2002. But he is a leader on and off the ice. You may remember during the Bruins Stanley Cup run that Thornton gave the team a much needed shot in the arm against the Vancouver Canucks. After being a healthy scratch during Game 1 & 2, Thornton returned and unleashed his fury on the opposition.  He helped set the physical tone for rest of the series as the Bruins won their first Stanley Cup since 1972. Thornton made such an impact that the following season, the spineless Canucks tried to exact revenge by jumping him. His teammates came to his aid during the emotionally charged game with their new hated rival. #22 took one for the team…literally. What Thornton lacks in god given talent he makes up with G-R-I-T. He is a blue collar worker in a Black & Gold uniform. Thornton exemplifies the hard working people of New England. He lives in Charlestown year round. Thornton has become one with the people of Boston. During this most recent NHL Lockout, Shawn Thornton did not go to Europe like most of his teammates. He stayed in and around Boston. He performed at the Boston Pops during the holiday season. Thornton became the spokesperson on the NHL labor talks for the local media. He was hunkering down and hoped the nonsense would end soon.  He was the constant reminder that the Bruins were still relevant during yet another dark time for the NHL. When the light at the end of the Lockout tunnel shined bright, Thornton was there to mingle with the most important people…..the fans. At the recent Hockey Resurrection party held at the Harp, the Bruins enforcer kicked back with the people who have an UNDYING PASSION for the Black & Gold. I have met Shawn Thornton a few times and he has been nothing short of a class act. He is humble and down to earth. He is just a regular guy, he is not an ‘UNTOUCHABLE”. He is one of “us”. Thornton may be a Canadian boy from Ontario, but Boston is now interwoven into his DNA. The Boston Bruins could not as for a better brand ambassador. Thornton gives his all on the ice sometimes with his own blood. He is a fan favorite and cult hero like L.B., Jay Miller, and Stan Jonathan before him. He also gives his all to the community and his adopted home. He is the the TRUE face of the Boston Bruins.
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