Pastrnak pays tribute to Ortiz and the Red Sox with his gear


BOSTON – His sticks are a particular green, a green that cannot be missed at Fenway Park, from the Green Monster to the dugouts. That’s what the Boston Bruins forward wanted David Pastrnakwhich once again shows that he pays attention to style and detail.

At Notre Dame University, for the 2019 Winter Classic, Pastrnak collaborated on the design of a stick adorned with Irish clubs, yard lines found on football fields, the logo of Notre Dame and a sketch of buildings in downtown Boston, plus the pasta emoji typically associated with it.

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This time, for the 2023 NHL Discover Winter Classic against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Fenway Park on Monday (2 p.m. ET; TVAS, SN, TNT), Pastrnak drew much less football and much more baseball inspiration. Makes sense, considering the game will take place in one of the most legendary baseball stadiums in the United States.

« I did it last time at Notre Dame, » Pastrnak said. The stick is much more detailed this year. I am happy with the result. I find it great. It’s a special event, so I think it’s the perfect time to do a little something different. »

For this year’s edition, the Winter Classic logo is imbued in the green color of the Bauer trademark stick, and Pastrnak even gave a nod to the city of Prague in his native Czech Republic. The Green Monster’s scoreboard is also seen, as are the seams of a baseball, which also appear on his custom skates.

What Pastrnak likes the most is the reference to David Ortiz, the legendary Boston Red Sox power hitter who was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2022. On the stick, Ortiz’s silhouette points towards the sky – as he always did after a home run during his career – and we also see his number 34 as well as his name.

« You can’t let go of Red Sox legend, ‘Big Papi,' » Pastrnak said in a video released by the Bruins. “David Ortiz is right here (on the stick). I hope he won’t be angry and that it will bring me some luck. »

And, of course, there’s the pasta emoji.

« I told them what I wanted on the stick, and the designers did a good job of making it happen, » Pastrnak continued. It didn’t take several tries, and I was happy with what I saw. I’m eager to. »

His skates are perhaps even more impressive, as the white on the heels transitions to green. The seam of a baseball separates the two colors. The green portion again features the Fenway Park scoreboard.

Pastrnak isn’t the only one paying homage to Ortiz with his gear. The Guardian Jeremy Swaymanwho will act as an auxiliary to Linus Ullmarkhas references to three Red Sox greats — Ortiz, Ted Williams and Curt Schilling — on his custom mask for the event.

Pastrnak will play his third outdoor game, having appeared in NHL games outdoors at Lake Tahoe on Feb. 21, 2021, when he scored a hat trick in a 7-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers. He also took part in the Winter Classic at Notre Dame University, a 4-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks.

As the Bruins practiced on the ice at Fenway Park on Sunday, Pastrnak reminisced about his childhood, when he played on the only rink in his hometown of Havirov, Czech Republic. He remembered Christmas days when he went to play on a lake that was just a little too far away – « a long walk carrying the skates and sticks. » »

« You’re going to play on the lake and you hope the whole lake is frozen enough, » Pastrnak said. It brings back memories for you. Just taking part in training is fun, with the wind brushing your face. It is definitely something special. It’s a nod to history. Hockey started outdoors. »

And he had the chance to jump on the ice with his mother, Marcela Ziembova, who will attend the game.

 » It was extraordinary. I told my mom that you have to give her a lot of credit because she raised a whole hockey player without even knowing how to skate,” Pastrnak said with a laugh.

While her mother isn’t the most confident on skates, Pastrnak feels the same way with a baseball bat in her hands.

« I had never batted before, » Pastrnak said. I tried today. I’m 1-for-1, so I finished on top. I hit the ball. I think I could reach the first goal without any problem. I think I would be good at stealing a base as well. »

He then turned to see which locker he was sitting in front of in the Red Sox locker room.

« I think it’s JD’s (Martinez) locker, » he said. I hope to hit some homers tomorrow. »



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