Bruins ready for Cup finals

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins got a grand sendoff from fans outside TD Garden Monday afternoon before boarding their flight to Vancouver for Games 1 and 2 of the Stanley Cup finals, which begin Wednesday at the Rogers Centre.

"You can feel, you can sense that the whole city is behind us and they've been like that all playoffs," Patrice Bergeron said of the fan support after Monday's practice. "It's great. Obviously Boston is such a sports town and to bring back, I guess the hockey fans and us into it, is something that I'm very proud of."

Bergeron also said he was proud to be part of the first Bruins team to make the Stanley Cup finals since 1990.

"Obviously very happy, very proud of what we've accomplished as a team so far and how far we've come," Bergeron said. "We came back and showed some character all playoffs but also all season. Obviously for me being it's my eighth year in Boston and having a chance to share that with the city is something special for me."

Goalie Tim Thomas echoed Bergeron's sentiments, but acknowledged their ultimate goal had not yet been reached.

"It's great and it's where you've wanted to be and you, well what I've worked for my whole life, you know to get to this point in the Stanley Cup," Thomas said. "And so it's a big accomplishment. But you don't dream of getting to the Stanley Cup finals, you dream of winning the Stanley Cup. So there's still more work to be done."

Coach Claude Julien said he thought the magnitude of making the Cup finals finally sunk in Sunday.

"Well I think we were done celebrating ... the next day," Julien said. "That night was an opportunity for us to enjoy the moment and rightfully so but next day it was about getting our rest. We started working on things yesterday and so it's preparation here for what we feel is obviously the biggest part of the season coming up.

"So it's sunk in. I mean it sunk in that we're there. It also sunk in that we're not done. We realize that there's a lot of work ahead of us, probably the hardest games to win as you know we'll be against a team that kind of dominated the league this year and we know we're capable of doing it. We certainly don't feel like we're a team that is not capable of winning games against this team and we're going to have to go out there and prove it."

James Murphy covers the Bruins for ESPNBoston.com.