Tonight the Bruins begin their defense of Lord Stanley’s Cup, as they take on the rival Philadelphia Flyers at the TD Garden. Prior to the game, the Bruins will raise their sixth Championship banner to the rafters of the Garden. The game is set to begin at 7 PM Eastern, and can be seen on Versus. It can also be heard on 98.5 The Sports Hub, the official radio home of the Bruins.
Tonight’s Expected Line-Up:
Defenseman Adam McQuaid has been absent from practice the past few days due to a flu-like illness. If he is unable to play, rookie blue-liner Matt Bartkowski will take his spot in the lineup. With the recent release of veteran Chris Clark, the only other healthy scratch for Boston will be Jordan Caron.
This will be the first time the Bruins face off against the new-look Flyers. Over the off-season, GM Paul Holmgren gave his team a complete makeover. Philadelphia went out and acquired the likes of Max Talbot, Jaromir Jagr, Wayne Simmonds, Jakub Voracek, and most notably Ilya Bryzgalov. To make room for these new players, former Flyers Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, Daniel Carcillo, and Ville Leino all found new homes, this summer. Also, last month, the Flyers named veteran defenseman Chris Pronger, their 18th captain in team history.
UPDATE: News broke this morning that the “A”,which stands for “Alternate Captain”, as I am sure you all know, that was vacated when Mark Recchi retired will now be filled by Chris Kelly and Andrew Ference. Ference will wear the letter during Bruins’ home games, while Kelly will sport the “A” during road games. Patrice Bergeron will keep his “A”, on a permanent basis, as will Zdeno Chara, and his “C”.
–Flyers’ forward Daniel Briere, who turns 34 today, had one goal and one assist against Boston in 2010-11, and has 38 points in 41 career games against the Black & Gold. Those numbers are good for a rating of 0.93 Points Per Game.
– New Flyers’ goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov stopped 74 of 79 shots against the Bruins during last season’s 2-game series between the Coyotes & Bruins, as part of the NHL’s Premiere Series, in Prague, CZE. That equals out to a .935 Save Percentage and a 2.50 GAA.
– The Bruins’ first line of Milan Lucic, David Krecji & Nathan Horton scored a total of 10 goals and 26 points against Philadelphia, in 8 games last season (including playoffs).
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About the Author: Boston Bruins writer for Hockey Independent. Contributor to the New England Hockey Journal. Have written for The Hockey Guys and SB Nation Boston. Follow me on Twitter @_BWoodward or shoot me an email at BWoodward.HI@gmail.com.