Bruins

What's with Blues playing 'Gloria' and 'Country Roads' at home games?

What's with Blues playing 'Gloria' and 'Country Roads' at home games?

We'll forgive you if you haven't watched many Blues games in St. Louis this season.

We'll also forgive you if you're watching the Boston Bruins' Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final in St. Louis on Saturday and wondering why 18,400 Blues fans are belting out two songs that have nothing to do with their city.

We're talking about Laura Branigan's "Gloria" and John Denver's "Take Me Home, Country Roads," the former of which has become the Blues' official goal song and the latter of which has become a sing-along anthem in the third period of games at Enterprise Arena.

But Branigan was a New York native and Denver's hit song is about West Virginia. So, why the heck did the St. Louis Blues adopt them?

The explanations are equally random. "Gloria," it turns out, came to the Blues by way of Jacks NYB, a bar in South Philadelphia where a group of Blues players went to watch the Eagles-Bears playoff game on Jan. 6. According to Blues forward Robby Fabbri, one patron kept yelling "Play Gloria!" during commerical breaks to request Branigan's 1982 hit. The DJ obliged, the bar went wild, and Fabbri and his teammates hatched an idea.

"They just went nuts when they heard it, and we loved watching it," Fabbri explained earlier this month, via USA TODAY. "So, we just happened to get a win the next day and made it our win song."

Fast forward to late May, when "Gloria" has become synonymous with the Blues' deepest postseason run since 1970 and, of course, has made its way onto a T-shirt.

"Country Roads" came to Blues games a few weeks after "Gloria," and Boston fans will find its origins ironic. Blues game operations director Jason Pippi was trying to play Neil Diamond's "Sweet Caroline" -- synonymous with eighth innings at Boston Red Sox games -- at home games, but the song never caught on with St. Louis fans.

So Pippi, a University of Pittsburgh graduate, randomly suggested "Country Roads" during a meeting.

"(Sweet Caroline is) a Pitt classic, but it didn't stick anywhere nearly as much as Country Roads," Pippi told WVU Sports. "It was a bit of a mistake how it happened. It came up in the office, 'So, what about Country Roads, everyone loves that one' and I said, 'I'll tell you what, I hate it!' But everyone knows the words to it."

Pippi tested out "Country Roads" in the third period of a late February Blues game and actually mistimed the song, cutting the music right as the chorus began when play resumed. But the Blues crowd picked up the slack by signing the rest of the chorus anyway. When Pippi tried the same tactic at the following game, the crowd did the same thing, and another "tradition" was born.

So, there you have it. While the Bruins' victory song -- "Dirty Water" by The Standells, featuring the chorus "Boston, you're my home" -- needs no explanation, the soundtrack at St. Louis games is a bit more eclectic.

And if the Bruins would rather not hear "Gloria," they could always pitch a shutout Saturday night.

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Talking Points: Patrice Bergeron the only bright spot in brutal Bruins loss

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Talking Points: Patrice Bergeron the only bright spot in brutal Bruins loss

GOLD STAR: Anthony Duclair toiled with the Arizona Coyotes, Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets after some solid initial success in the desert with a 20-goal season on his resume, but it feels like the 24-year-old is enjoying a second life with the Ottawa Senators.

Duclair finished with a pair of goals and three points against the Bruins on Monday night and was making things happen pretty much every time he was on the ice. Duclair finished with two goals, three points, a plus-3 rating, six shots on net and five giveaways in his 16-plus minutes of ice time. Duclair’s first goal of the night gave the Senators a 2-0 lead and essentially put the Bruins deep in the hole before he iced things at the very end with an empty netter.

BLACK EYE: Torey Krug finished a minus-3 with just a single shot on net, and it could have been even worse if he hadn’t jumped off the ice just before Ottawa scored the first goal of the game in the first period. As it was, Krug had five shot attempts that were either blocked or missed their target and didn’t have enough offensively to help push along the Bruins power play when they really needed to do their damage.

Later on in the game Krug had some defensive issues as well and was among a number of Bruins players that finished with some pretty rough plus/minus numbers including Jake DeBrusk (minus-4), David Krejci (minus-3) and Brett Ritchie (minus-2).

TURNING POINT: The Bruins got a goal from Patrice Bergeron toward the end of the first period to halve Ottawa’s lead and went into the first intermission with a decent chance at winning the game. But then the Bruins came out and gave up a goal in the first two minutes of the second period and essentially let things slip through their fingers at that point. It was a botched play from Tuukka Rask, who attempted to play a puck behind the Boston net and just threw the puck to Vladislav Namestnikov, who set up Chris Tierney for the eventual game-winning goal.

It typified the gift goals that the Bruins gave them on the evening and made it clear it wasn’t going to be their night.

HONORABLE MENTION: Patrice Bergeron missed the previous seven games with a lower-body injury and returned to be one of the best players on the ice for either team. Certainly, he was the best player on the ice for the Bruins after scoring a first period goal that got the Bruins in the game.

Bergeron finished with six shots on net, 10 shot attempts and 16-of-25 face-off wins to go along with a blocked shot in 21:43 of ice time. It would appear that Bergeron didn’t have any ill effects from the injury and was fully ready to take on a regular, intense workload after coming back from the injury. The only good news of the night was how good Bergeron looked in his return from injury.

BY THE NUMBERS: 38 – the number of saves for Anders Nilsson, who was a massive factor for the Senators shutting down the Boston power play when it really mattered and holding the Bruins to just two goals on 40 shots.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "He’s a true hero...he inspired us all with everything he did...we're going to miss him dearly." –Torey Krug to reporters on the passing of Bruins fan and ALS awareness advocate Pete Frates, who courageously inspired so many during his fight with ALS before succumbing to it this week.

HAGGERTY: Is complacency the only thing that can derail Bruins?>>>

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NHL Highlights: Bruins suffer second straight regulation loss vs. lowly Senators

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NHL Highlights: Bruins suffer second straight regulation loss vs. lowly Senators

FINAL SCORE: Senators 5, Bruins 2

IN BRIEF: The Bruins put forth a subpar effort against the Senators, sleepwalking through most of the game en route to a second straight loss. The silver lining for the team was that Patrice Bergeron scored in his first game back after missing seven straight games with an injury.

BOX SCORE

BRUINS RECORD: 20-5-6 (46 points)

HIGHLIGHTS

ANISIMOV OPENS THE OTTAWA SCORING QUICKLY

B'S ALLOW EASY GOAL TO ANTHONY DUCLAIR

BERGERON CUTS THE LEAD IN HALF OFF FEED FROM PASTRNAK

BRUINS ALLOW ANOTHER MIND-BOGGLING GOAL

PAGEAU'S EMPTY-NET GOAL PUTS THINGS SEEMINGLY OUT OF REACH

JAKE DEBRUSK'S LATE GOAL

UP NEXT:
@ Washington Capitals, 7 p.m., NBC Sports Network

HAGGERTY: Is complacency the only thing that can derail Bruins?>>>

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