official: "Martin Brodeur Day"
Marin New Jersey Devils
2009, 7:31 PM EDT
WATCH (NJN NEWS) FOOTAGE OF MARTIN BRODEUR DAY
WATCH MARTIN DAY VIDEO (NJAssemblyDems youtube channel)
LISTEN TO SENATOR CODEY AND MARTIN BRODEUR
LISTEN THE NEW JERSEY STATE RESOLUTION
LISTEN TO MARTIN BRODEUR PRESS INTERVIEW
newjerseydevils.com - It was another rainy morning in
what has been a gloomy June, but inside the New Jersey State House, Martin Brodeur got
his day in the sun.
Brodeur, the NHL's all-time wins leader, was honored Thursday in Trenton with a
resolution proclaiming it "Martin Brodeur Day" in New Jersey.
"It's a great honor for me to be here today," Brodeur said. "It's an amazing
thing for me and for the organization at the same time. We take a lot of pride
in playing for New Jersey and being the New Jersey Devils - Jersey's Team
- so to get recognized is quite an honor for me. I'm sure I'm speaking for
all the players that do come through New Jersey, we love it here."
Cheers went up first in the State Assembly, then the Senate, as Devils fans
clad in red and black packed the balconies to welcome Brodeur. More than 300
fans boarded a New Jersey Transit train with Devils Chairman and Managing
Partner Jeff Vanderbeek, Co-owner Mike Gilfillan and President/CEO/GM Lou
Lamoriello for the one-hour ride from Newark to Trenton to witness the
Devils alumni Ken Daneyko, Grant Marshall and Rob Skrlac also attended, as did
team radio broadcasters Matt Loughlin and Sherry Ross.
"We're just so honored to be invited down here for this day," Vanderbeek said,
adding that he enjoyed meeting with fans on the train. "It's a tremendous group
of passionate fans that are proud to wear the ‘NJ' on their chest. This is
Jersey's Team, and we're just thrilled to be here, thrilled to recognize Marty,
and thrilled to recognize his accomplishments."
Brodeur won his 552nd game on March 17, surpassing Patrick Roy for the new
League record. He finished the season with 557 career wins, and needs three
shutouts to surpass Terry Sawchuk for the NHL's all-time mark (103).
The future Hall of Famer grew up in the Montreal suburb of St. Leonard but came
of age in the Garden State. A West Orange resident, Brodeur said he spends 10
months a year in New Jersey and returns to his native Quebec for vacations.
"I've been here for so long, New Jersey's home," Brodeur said. "The fact that I
wanted to stay here and I love being a part of this organization and living in
New Jersey, how nice it is for me to be an athlete. It's hard to believe
because I'm from Canada, but I've been in one place for so long, and my whole
adult life has been here."
There were spontaneous chants of "Marty, Marty," and "Marty's better" as
assemblymen and senators saluted Brodeur.
"I'm proud of the accomplishments of Marty Brodeur and what he has accomplished
to bring a tribute to the honor of the New Jersey Devils - the only
professional sports team to include New Jersey in their logo," said Assemblyman
Frederick Scalera. "I'm proud to be here on Marty Brodeur Day."
Brodeur was selected 20th overall by the Devils in the 1990 NHL Entry Draft,
and has never known another NHL club. He said Thursday that he enjoys the
athlete's life in New Jersey, as well as the proximity to divisional opponents.
The Rangers and Islanders are within driving distance, while Philadelphia and
Pittsburgh are short plane rides away.
"It comes down to hockey and it's a great place to play hockey," Brodeur said.
Brodeur didn't necessarily set out to play 15 seasons with one team, but
followed the example of teammates like Daneyko, who spent two decades with the
Devils. Together, Brodeur and Daneyko won three Stanley Cup titles.
"When I started to play, Daneyko was a part of the organization, and I thought
it was amazing for an athlete to stay in one place for his whole career,"
Brodeur said. "I got to know him really well, and saw how people treated him
because of it."
continued: "It's a pride thing. There's not many athletes that do it now,
especially in this era of sports.
The Devils' former practice facility at South Mountain bears the name of Senate
President Richard Codey, who spoke Thursday about what Brodeur has meant to the
"For what he's done, I think what I'm proudest of is that he's a New Jersey
resident with a team that says New Jersey," Codey said. "The fact that they
play in New Jersey, they play in Essex, my home county, and the fact that he's
a class act in every way shape and form."
Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean, Jr., echoed Codey's praise.
"New Jersey is a far, far better place because of what Martin has done, and the
pride he has shown in our great state and our great team," Kean said.
credits: New Jersey Devils/Andy Marlin