In Vancouver, Drury Delivers
On to quarterfinals: former Terrier sparks victory over Canada
As a Terrier, hockey phenom Chris Drury, a member of BU’s 1995 NCAA national champion team, tallied 113 goals and 100 assists in 155 games. Now, as the $7 million a year captain of the New York Rangers and a three-time Olympian, he’s putting skills honed on Commonwealth Avenue to the service of his country. And that service is excellent. With just over three minutes left in the second period of a dangerously close contest with the Canadian team last Sunday, Drury (CAS’98) snagged a loose puck and tapped it neatly into the net, breaking a 2-2 tie and setting the U.S. team on a one-way path to a 5-3 victory.
The win pushed the U.S. team into today’s quarterfinals. It also prompted U.S. coach Ron Wilson to compare Drury’s playing style to that of Mike Eruzione (SED’77), director of development for BU athletics and captain of the legendary “Miracle on Ice” team that beat the Russians and went on to take home the gold in the 1980 Olympics at Lake Placid. That victory, earned with the efforts of three other former BU players — Jack O’Callahan (CAS’79), Jim Craig (SED’79), and Dave Silk (CAS’80, MET’92, GSM’93), took place 30 years ago last Monday.
“Chris Drury is without question one of the greatest players ever to play here,” says BU hockey coach Jack Parker (SMG’68, Hon.’97), who has seen his former players picked for Olympic competition 32 times. Parker cites Drury’s 1998 Hobey Baker Memorial Award, given each year to the top collegiate men’s hockey player. Both BU and the Hockey East league named him most valuable player two years in a row.
Drury is one of two former Terriers on the ice at Vancouver. Ryan Whitney (CAS’05), a defenseman for the Anaheim Ducks, came aboard early this month when injuries opened two slots on the team. Whitney was another player destined for championships, Parker says. “Frankly, we were fortunate to keep him for three years,” he says. “I thought he was going to leave after his sophomore year.” Whitney was the Pittsburgh Penguins’ number one draft pick when he left BU after his junior year.
The enduring admiration of the coach and his former players is mutual. Drury said in a 2007 Bostonia magazine interview that one of many traits he learned under Parker’s guidance was professionalism. “He prepares you for being a professional hockey player,” Drury said, “but he also prepares you to play a professional in life.”
Art Jahnke can be reached at email@example.com.+ Comments