Huge news out of Beantown today. The Bruins announced that former player Willie O’Ree would get his number 22 retired by the organization and raised to the rafters this season. O’Ree broke the color barrier as he was the first black player to ever lace up the skates in the NHL. He joins some elite company who have their numbers retired by Boston. This includes Bobby Orr, Terry O’Reilly, Cam Neely, Milt Schmidt, and Ray Bourque.
A well-deserved honor for one of our game's greatest ambassadors.
The #NHLBruins are proud to announce that Willie O'Ree's No. 22 will be raised to the TD Garden rafters.
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 12, 2021
Willie O’Ree only spent two seasons with Boston, but his achievement of breaking the color barrier truly is historic and this honor is well deserved. He paved the way for a new generation of hockey players to pursue the great game. Amazing job by Boston to honor O’Ree in this way. O’Ree loves Boston and Boston loves O’Ree. It seems like it was meant to happen eventually. Congrats Willie!