The Boston Bruins avoided elimination during the Stanley Cup Final on Sunday night, but as is the case with many in the sports world today, their hearts and minds are now elsewhere.
During the team’s Game 6 win, word began to spread that former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz was shot and hospitalized in his native Dominican Republic. Fans, athletes and celebrities alike began wishing the MLB icon well on social media, as more details on his condition were made public.
The Bruins were otherwise occupied when the news broke, but goaltender Tuukka Rask took to Twitter with a heartfelt message to his fellow Boston sports icon on Monday afternoon.
Boston Red Sox legend David Ortiz was shot in his native Dominican Republic on Sunday and suffered damage to multiple organs, but is expected to make a full recovery, according to the latest reports.
As news of the shooting spread, an outpouring of support came from athletes across multiple sports. Former Red Sox teammates led the charge on social media and were joined by other baseball players, including Mike Trout and Andrew McCutchen, as well as NBA star Karl Anthony-Towns and former Boston Celtics fan favorites Kendrick Perkins and Isaiah Thomas.
Among those also offering their thoughts and well-wishes was former United States President Barack Obama, who welcomed Ortiz to the White House after Boston’s 2013 World Series championship.
That title came mere months after the events of the Boston Marathon bombing. Obama referenced the terrorist attack, and Ortiz’s “spirit and resolve” in its wake, in his tweet to the former slugger on Monday morning.
Twenty-four years, three World Series championships and over 500 home runs ago, a young man by the name of David Arias was signed out of high school by the Seattle Mariners. He spent four years in the Mariners’ farm system before being traded to the Minnesota Twins in 1996 as a ‘player to be named later.’
Upon arriving in Minnesota, that player to be named later informed his new team that Arias was not his preferred last name — he would rather be listed as David Ortiz. In 2003, when he joined the Boston Red Sox, he became Big Papi.