By Casey Holland
Boston Bruins Alumni Intern
Nichols College '25
When you think about what retired hockey players do on a random Tuesday in June what do you think about? Well lets see, what is close to hockey minus the cold and skates? Golf sounds perfect. And what happens when more than 30 Bruins Alumni get together on a beautiful day at a beautiful course? Well let's just say, there were lots of laughs, conversations and memories made across the board for all of the alumni that attended.
On Tuesday June 22, 2022 the Boston Bruins Alumni Association held a very special outing for the Bruins Alumni players. Located at the Sacconnesset Golf Club in Falmouth, MA, the Bruins Alumni Association hosted the Alumni Golf Day and it was a very successful day catching up with all of our alumni. Throughout the day we had the “voice” of the Bruins Alumni, John Horrigan, interviewing all of the Alumni for a future presentation of Boston Bruins Alumni TV!
The golf outing featured most of the participating Bruins Alumni team members and staff, along with first-time participants like Tukka Rask, Chris Wagner and Bruce Cassidy.
First, Horrigan caught up with the foursome of Andy Brickley, Tommy Songin, Bob Beers and Bob Sweeney, all of whom joked about their golf game, but had a great time playing together on the beautiful course. Out of all foursomes at this tournament, Brickley says his group may have been “the most competitive foursome”. In his free time, Brickley likes to play golf every day, which may be why this game was so competitive. This group of guys were surprised yet excited to see Bruce Cassidy, attending the event even though he is no longer with the Bruins.
Two other Alumni that Horrigan was able to catch up with were Reggie Lemelin and Gordy Kluzak. Lemelin was excited to be a part of the day even if his golf game was not yet in mid-summer form. Kluzak likes to joke about how even though the game of golf “drives you crazy”, we keep coming back each day to play because there's “nothing better”. At this time, he still works for Goldman Sachs where he started nearly 24 years ago, Kluzak is sad about Rick Middleton’s pending retirement from the Alumni Association but excited for Frank Simonetti to take his place.
One of the most humorous conversations Horrigan had was with the team of Kenny Hodge, Bruce Shoebottom, and Rick “Nifty” Middletown, the current president of the alumni association. These men and Horrigan shared lots of laughs through their conversation. The three men were doing great, having great conversations, laughs and happy to be a part of the day. Kenny Hodge is playing for the Boston Bruins Alumni Hockey team this season and received star of the game for the first time. “Nifty” was happy to be a part of yet another tournament with the Boston Bruins Alumni and is happy he can share some laughs with the guys. Nifty, who currently stands as president for the Boston Bruins Alumni Association, has his reign coming to an end. He has had a lot of fun over the past 15 years and was a great president. He always says, “It's easy to be the president of this alumni because we have so many guys like John Horrigan & Mark Willand, who are making it a professional show.”,
The foursome of Keith Segee, Frank Simonetti, Mike Sandford and Bruce Crowder was a great group to be able to catch up with. This was Keith’s first Boston Bruins Alumni Tournament; he was excited to be there and to have had such a nice day. Frank has been at every Tournament and with Nifty’s retirement he will be the onboarding President for the 2023 year. The foursome joked about changing the venue of this tournament to a mini golf outing!
Horrigan next called with the South Shore crew of Mike Mottau, Eric Nickulas, and Pat Leahy who struck him with very positive vibes as they were making their way through the course. As Leahy says “the course [was] great, there was “nice weather” and Mottau and Nickaulas add in that they had a “good foursome” and there were “good people” at the event. These three men all play for the Boston Bruins Alumni Hockey team and enjoy being back in the game. The camaraderie of the players in the locker room, being back with those they are playing with and back with the fans gives them a feeling like no other. Although Horrigan announces many games with these men in it, it was great catching up outside of the game and we are excited to keep an eye on them back in the rink anytime we can.
Horrigan next interviewedAlumni stalwarts Guy Larose, Tim Sweeney, Dave Shaw and Terry Virtue. Since we last caught up with them Virtue and Shaw played great games on defense for the Boston Bruins Alumni Hockey team. As well, Larose and Sweeny helped the team out across the rink. The foursome joked around with Horrigan about not receiving any stars from him during their games; but, hopefully next season they will get some.
Lastly, Horrigan caught up with Jay Miller, the man behind the Alumni Golf Tournament. We thank him because without him and his wife our tournament would not be possible. For Jay, he “wants to see all the guys get back together”. He wants them to tell stories about the fans, about memories, and have fun. He himself enjoys seeing the guys and is happy that he has been given the opportunities in his life to be able to put this day on for them. Miller believes in this one saying, and always has, “One shift, you’re a Bruin Alumni”. There are only so many Alumni and he is happy and fortunate that they are able to get together each year in this way. We are thankful for the work he puts into this tournament every year and thankful that he is a part of our Bruins Alumni team.
Overall, the 2022 Boston Bruins Alumni Golf Day was a resounding success, with no small thanks going to team photographer Craig Michaud, executive director Karen Wonoski and John Horrigan, whose interviews and funny features will be available to viewers of Bruins Alumni TV.