Ray Allen's on the Bruins bandwagon

707916.jpg

Ray Allen's on the Bruins bandwagon

BOSTON -- On Thursday, the Boston Bruins will begin their quest to defend the Stanley Cup.
It is a feat the players just down the hall of the TD Garden can relate to. The Boston Celtics, who share the arena with the Bruins, did the same just three years ago after winning the 2008 NBA Championship.
Celtics veteran Ray Allen is rooting for his hockey counterparts.
Im trying to get into it, he told CSNNE.com. Were too close not to be, almost sharing locker rooms. I know Bruins president Cam Neely pretty well, I play golf with him. What they did last year was incredible and I was happy for them. I keep saying I need to get to a game but I cant figure it out on the schedule since we run parallel with their schedule.
Prior to Sundays game against the Philadelphia 76ers, Allen had the book, Black and Gold: Four Decades of the Boston Bruins in Photographs in his locker, a recent gift from Bruins team photographer Steve Babineau.
Allen understands the hard work that goes into a team earning a book like that, and what it will take to gain another one.
Everybodys got to continue doing the same thing they did before, he said. The role players have to continue to be role players and know that its about the sacrifices they made and they have to continue to make them.
The Bruins will kick off the first round of the playoffs at the Garden against the Washington Capitals on Thursday, an off day for the Celtics as they travel to Toronto to begin a back-to-back-to-back road series on Friday.

Clayborn beats out Seymour, Vrabel to enter Patriots Hall of Fame

clayborn.jpg

Clayborn beats out Seymour, Vrabel to enter Patriots Hall of Fame

Raymond Clayborn has been voted into the Patriots Hall of Fame, beating out both Mike Vrabel and Richard Seymour for the honor. The corner, who is tied for the franchise record for interceptions with Ty Law (36), will be the 26th person inducted to the Hall. 

Clayborn was a three-time Pro Bowler (1983, 1985, 1986) during his 13-year Patriots career from 1977 through 1989. He was drafted by the Patriots in the first round (16th overall) out of Texas in 1977, and chipped in both in the secondary and as a kick returner. As a rookie in the return game, he averaged 31 yards per return and brought back three for touchdowns. 

Clayborn reacted to the news on Twitter soon after the announcement was made. 

"I was fortunate to be a season ticket holder during Raymond's entire Patriots career," Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft said in a statement. "For the first half of his career, he teamed with Michael Haynes to form one of the best corner tandems in league history. Throughout his career, Raymond was a physical, shutdown corner.

"One of my favorite memories was watching the 1985 team advance to the Super Bowl after Raymond helped us break the Orange Bowl curse when he stymied future Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino with a dominant performance against Pro Bowl receivers Mark Duper and Mark Clayton. Raymond had six passes defensed and an interception to help us claim our first conference title. It was the greatest upset victory in franchise history at the time and one the entire New England region celebrated. It is a well-deserved honor and I look forward to presenting him his hall of fame jacket."

Clayborn has been a finalist for each of the last four years but was not able to generate enough support in the annual online vote to beat out Ty Law (2014 inductee), Willie McGinest (2015) or Kevin Faulk (2016). Clayborn was eligible to be voted in by the senior committee since he's now been retired for 25 years, but he did not receive the requisite eight of 10 senior committee votes to be elected in that way. 

As it turns out, he didn't need to be. When Kraft called Clayborn with the news, he said Clayborn received over 40 percent of the vote to beat out the pair of three-time Super Bowl champs.