Boston’s Robert Kraft explains why he went out of his way to help New York

So much for that Boston-New York rivalry.

Patriots owner Robert Kraft, appearing Thursday night on CNN, explained why he wanted to purchase and send to New York City 300,000 of the 1.2 million N95 masks the team’s plane retrieved from China.

“I’ve been watching Governor [Andrew] Cuomo over the last few weeks, and I just think he’s done an outstanding job,” Kraft said. “He’s at the epicenter of this crisis, and he has a calming way about him and he brings confidence.

“And I have a personal tie to New York City. Columbia was good to me and gave me a full scholarship as a kid. I love the city, I love the people there. I don’t think what’s going on is something any of us could imagine.”

Beyond those ties, Kraft saw this as a chance to bring people together.

“We agreed to buy the masks and give them to the people of the City of New York just to try to bring some hope and goodwill and let people know we’re trying to bring everything together and generate some good feelings,” Kraft said.

And so the 300,000 masks will arrive in New York tomorrow morning, thanks to Kraft’s efforts.

“I think that was the only good call I’ve gotten in about 10 days,” Cuomo said on CNN. “Mr. Kraft is a special man and what he did here is pure generosity and goodness.”

It’s more than that. It’s a sign of hope and inspiration that hopefully will spread as more Americans of means look for ways to help those who are fighting this battle on the front lines.

“People are looking for good things,” Kraft said. “This is the greatest country in the world. It’s time for us to rally together and solve these kinds of issues.”