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Biggest Boston Sports Event of 2011? Patch Editors Announce Their Picks

As we say hello to 2012, Patch editors are looking back at the events of 2011.

What is our best Boston sports event in 2011?

Here's a clue they are named after an animal and are a wicked cool bunch.

Usually, our editors are the ones asking the questions for the New Year's weekend, but we're turning the tables a bit. We've been asked for our top picks in , , , person of the year, event of the year and best Boston sports moment.

In round four, we give our top Boston Sporting event of 2011. After reading ours, please share yours with us in the comment section.

Kelly Glista, Norwood Patch Editor-, no contest. It shifted the attention of fans who were previously unexcited about hockey, it gave the already loyal fans a renewed hope, and was celebrated with one of the biggest victory parades in the city's history. Plus... it was the most awesome thing EVER.

Benjamin Paulin, Dover-Sherborn Patch Editor- The biggest Boston sports event would have to be the collapse of the Red Sox. No team in baseball had ever lost as badly as the Sox did at the end of the season. That collapse led to the departures of Terry Francona and Theo Epstein and also brought to light some of the antics going on in clubhouse by the players who clearly put winning baseball games on the back burner. Time will only tell how great the impact of their laziness and indifference actually is.

Jeremie Smith, Medfield Patch Editor-Boston Bruins winning the Stanley Cup. In a year of an epic collapse by the Boston Red Sox, a heart-breaking playoff loss to the rival Jets by the Patriots and an ugly exit in the Eastern Conference semifinals by the Celtics, it’s the popular choice to pick the Bruins winning the Cup as the biggest Boston sports event this past year. That being said, I think a case can be made that even if Tom Brady and the Pats won their fourth Super Bowl, the Sox won their third World Series title since 2004 or the Celtics were crowned NBA champions for an 18th time – none of those stories would have topped the Bruins improbable run to the top of the hockey world. I was in the Hub the night they beat Vancouver in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals and celebrated throughout the streets of Boston that night and later attended the victory parade. We’ve been blessed as Boston sports fans to see all our favorite teams win world titles this past decade – and while the Bruins wait was less than half of the Red Sox, it had that feel of pure excitement and jubilation for a team. There were no expectations of a Stanley Cup ­– only hope and hope for a team is what makes sports worth watching. Go Bruins and thanks for a memorable 2011.

Mike Gleason, Wrentham Patch Editor-The biggest sports story in Boston also happens to be the only positive one  — the Bruins winning the Stanley Cup. Amid a disappointing year from the area's "big three" franchises (the Pats getting bounced out of the playoffs by the Jets, the Celtics falling to the LeBron-led Heat and the Sox ignominiously collapsing late in the year), the Bruins gave us comebacks, feel-good stories and a long-awaited NHL championship. 

Jeff Sullivan, Mansfield Patch Editor-The Bruins, because now Boston has all four major sports championships in a decade.

Patrick Maguire, Easton Patch Editor-The Boston Bruins won the Stanley Cup. It's hard to argue with that. Then again, I could be a "negativeNancy" and talk about what I think is one of the worst trades in Celtics history that may have cost them a title, and the horrific and pitiful collapse of the Red Sox in September. But no, I'll stick with the good memories of the Bruins bringing home the Cup.

Kelly Mello, Norton Patch Editor- The collapse of the Red Sox. Terry Francona, gone. Theo Epstein gone. Chicken buckets and beer...we'll see about that this coming season. I hope they can turn their act around while not losing their personality. 

Michael Gelbwasser, Sharon Patch Editor-Bruins win the Cup. Boston is Hockeytown again. And the current team may well be even better.

Jeffrey Pickette, Stoughton Patch Editor-Hands down it's the winning the for the first time in . Bandwagon fans or not, people seemed to embrace hockey again in Boston. The win gave all four major Boston-area sports teams (sorry Revs) a championship in the last decade (Patriots in '01/'02, '03/04, '04/05; Red Sox in '04 and '07; Celtics in '07/'08; and the Bruins in '11) and further established Boston as the modern Title Town. The Red Sox historic September collapse is also worth mentioning as it brought an end (directly or indirectly) to the Tito Francona and Theo Epstein era in Boston, a coach/GM duo which led the Sox to two World Series titles and an ALCS appearance in 2008. Players’ reputations took some big hits (thanks to some beer and fried chicken) but Red Sox ownership may have come out looking the most foolish in this whole ordeal. 

Michael Hardman, Regional Editor and Attleboro Patch Editor-The Hub of Hockey rules again. Let's go Bruins. For the start of the playoffs to the finals' seventh game, in Boston terms, this was a wicked good time to be a hockey fan. It was nice to have Lord Stanley back in town.

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