Boston captain Zdeno Chara made a rare appearance in the faceoff circle early in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday night – and beat one of the NHL's better faceoff men in Vancouver's Ryan Kesler.
With the Bruins on a four-minute power play after Daniel Sedin clipped Chara with a high stick, Chara stepped in against Kesler for an offensive-zone draw 4:31 into the game after the puck was knocked into the bench. The 6-foot-9 defenseman outmuscled Kesler to control the puck back to the left point, and the Bruins got shots on goal by David Krejci and Tomas Kaberle and a blast by Chara that went wide before Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo froze the puck.
It was just the second faceoff of the season taken by Chara, both during the playoffs. He beat Montreal's Mike Cammalleri in Game 6 of the Bruins' opening-round series.
Chara did not take a faceoff during the regular season or during last year's playoffs. He was 1-1 during the 2009-10 regular season.
Chara did not take a faceoff during the regular season or during last year’s playoffs. He was 1-1 during the 2009-10 regular season and is 12-19 during his career in regular-season games. The two faceoffs he’s taken this spring are the only two he’s had in the playoffs during his career, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.