BOSTON – Screaming fans dressed in the black and gold of the Boston Bruins smiled, waved and stood on trees and bus shelters as they watched the NHL champions — and the Stanley Cup, of course — roll through city streets on a balmy, breezy day. And the players they adore gave it right back.

Tim Thomas beamed. Zdeno Chara pumped his fists. Patrice Bergeron signaled to the crowd to raise their voices even louder.

Then, as the nearly two-hour “rolling rally” celebration of the Bruins’ first title in 39 years neared its end Saturday afternoon, Andrew Ference raised one finger, then two, then three, orchestrating a familiar chant.

“Let’s Go Bruins,” the fans responded. “Let’s Go Bruins.”

But there’s no need for the Bruins to go any further. They’ve already arrived.

The long journey began in Vermont in late September with two days of training camp and ended in Vancouver with a 4-0 win last Wednesday in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals.

In between, the Bruins started the season with two games in Prague and grew into a team determined enough to win three of its four postseason series in seven games and good enough to knock off the Canucks, the NHL’s best team in the regular season.

The Bruins also had help from their fans, who stuck by them all the way to Saturday’s celebration on a sunny day with temperatures in the low 80s. Crowds were so deep on the sidewalks that many fans might not have been able to see the players.

But in a 15-minute program outside the TD Garden before the rally, playoff MVP Thomas briefly spoke to the fans, holding the Cup aloft the whole time.

“You guys wanted it. We got it and we want to share it with you today,” said the goalie, one of the few Bruins keeping a playoff beard. “Let’s have some fun.”

Then players and team officials boarded 18 colorful Duck Tours boats, tourist vehicles designed to travel on land and water. This day, they carried passengers who excelled on ice.

“We all love each other,” said forward Nathan Horton, sidelined for the series with a severe concussion early in Game 3. “We all care about each other. We all play for each other. That’s the way it’s been all year and that’s why we won the Cup.”

About 20 minutes into the trip to Copley Square, a route of about three miles from the arena where the Bruins were 3-0 against the Canucks in the finals, Thomas said, “It’s awesome to be sharing it with everybody. This is the day you really look forward to.”

He and team captain Chara took turns raising the Cup in the first vehicle. Then security personnel took it from one slow-moving boat after another so all the players had a chance to hold it. Chara even climbed down to the street so fans could touch it.

The rally is becoming a familiar sight in the city that is home to seven champions in 10 seasons — three for the New England Patriots, two for the Red Sox and one each for the Celtics and Bruins.

While Boston police no longer provide estimates, the size of the crowd appeared to be larger than all but the one that turned out to celebrate the first Red Sox championship in 86 years in 2004. The event appeared to be peaceful, as fans stayed behind barricades.