The Boston Bruins lost Game 7 to Carolina last Thursday and today held their break-up day at TD Banknorth Garden.

If you can believe it, captain Zdeno Chara did not begin his offseason workouts in preparation for next season in between game night and this morning.

“I like to start early, that’s for sure. I like to start early,” the regimen-addicted defenseman said today.

You can understand why even Chara would want to take a little time off, especially considering the shoulder, knee and groin injuries he was battling all the way through to the end of the Bruins’ season. Unlike last season, however, Chara will not require surgery.

“I’m very happy that I didn’t need any surgeries after the season,” said Chara, who last summer needed his labrum repaired. “All the results are negative so that’s very positive and I’m just glad that I’ll be able to get into my workouts soon.”

The captain sounded downright ecstatic about the future of the club with the development of his younger teammates and the experience that’s now under everyone’s belts. As far as clubs he’s played on in his lengthy NHL career, Chara couldn’t think of one that was more special than the 2008-09 Bruins.

“For sure it would be on top of my list,” he said. “In Ottawa, we had a really good team. But this is getting closer and closer to the team that is good enough to win. We all know we have to improve and get better. But we established being a contender and now we have to become winners.”