(Ed. Note: Eric Deerwester is a sophomore at Yarmouth High School who recently job shadowed with The Forecaster as part of his Career Exploration Program)
For most Boston sports fans, the latest Boston Bruins defeat at the hands of the Philadelphia Flyers will take months to recover from.
The latest blunder by the Bruins is just another setback that reminds New Englanders that success is not something to be expected, but something to be celebrated when achieved.
The past decade has spoiled those who are loyal to the teams of the Boston area, as the Red Sox, Patriots, and Celtics have celebrated a combined six championships since February, 2002.
As a high school student, I have only been around sports for a little more than a decade. My generation has witnessed the best years in Boston sports since the 1960s, but at our young age, our loyalty as fans has not been truly tested due to the lack of failure in recent years, but the Bruins’ collapse will be remembered for years to come in New England as one of the worst in history.
This time, the end of the series left Boston fans in shambles, unlike the Red Sox’ magical 2004 American League Championship Series comeback over the hated Yankees that will go down as one of the happiest moments in recent memory.
The seasoned fans of New England know what it’s like to suffer, going 86 years between championships from the Red Sox. Those years came with heartbreaks more severe than fans from the rest of the country could understand, such as the infamous “Buckner Ball.” Even at these low moments, the dedication that so many felt to their Boston teams could not be broken.
As a high school student, I have not been put through such losses and cannot understand the pain that came with them. The rise of the Patriots and the recent championships by the Red Sox and Celtics came as a reward to the fans that stuck with them through thick and thin and was celebrated as such. Championships have almost become the norm to my generation, unexposed to the horrors of Boston’s history.
The Bruins’ collapse against the Flyers will represent a turning point in our fanhood, as we shift from an abundance of victories to a group of teams rebuilding.
The aging Celtics, although making another run this season, are likely on their last legs. The Red Sox hold little resemblance to the team that reversed the curse, and could very well finish fourth in their division this season if they cannot find their identity as a team. As the young, spoiled generation of fans my peers and I represent, it’s time we take our lumps as fans and do a little suffering of our own, although our wait for success should be much shorter than seen in the past.
The Bruins’ choke is just one more defeat that reminds New England fans that not every season can end happily. Some end in championships and some end in heartbreak. When we’re talking about Boston sports, a lot of both must be expected.
That’s what makes us the most dedicated fans out there.