2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs

Bedard: Gronk laughs it up in Pats’ faces, Bruins get extended and Sox were no-hit … wait, what?

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(Getty Images)

When the history books are written about this era in Boston sports — and they will be — the date April 21st, 2018 will likely be just a footnote.

We hope.

Because, darn, if it didn't feel like a mild punch to the gut by the time the day was over

It didn't start out that way. As a beautiful morning (finally) dawned, Boston felt like the Hub of the Universe as always:

  • The Celtics, despite the emergence of somebody named Thon Maker, were still leading their series against the Bucks 2-1.
  • The Bruins were on the verge of closing out a first-round series with the Toronto Maple Leafs, which would mean the B's would be well-rested for the main event against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the next round.
  • The Red Sox were humming at 17-2 with the best record in baseball, and set for their second game against the Oakland Athletics. Since blowing the season opener in Tampa, Boston was one win away from putting together its second nine-game winning streak around their only other loss.
  • And the Patriots, despite any perceived or real drama involving Tom Brady, are still the Super Bowl favorites in Las Vegas (6-1 odds).

By the time the clock struck midnight and the calendar changed over, however, things felt a whole lot different.

What a long, strange trip it was.

Gronk laughs it up on Patriots soil