HAMPTON - When Bruins legend Rick Middleton moved to New Hampshire two decades ago, he said he was certain Hampton was where he wanted to be.
“My first and only choice was Hampton,” said Middleton Tuesday as town and beach officials honored him on the Seashell Stage for having his No. 16 retired by the Bruins last fall. “This town has been very good to me.”
Middleton, the Bruins’ third all-time scorer with 402 career goals, has lived in Hampton since 1997, first at North Beach before moving to the west side of town. His number was retired and raised to the TD Garden rafters last October, which local officials decided was worth celebrating with Hampton’s summer crowd. They named Tuesday “Nifty Night,” Middleton’s nickname being Nifty as a player. Tuesday, July 16, was chosen with Nifty’s number in mind.
Selectman Regina Barnes read a proclamation from the town honoring and thanking him, while representatives from the Hampton Beach Village District presented him with their own plaque. Both mentioned local community service that has included help raising money for Hampton’s soup kitchens and the Hampton Youth Association.
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