(Photo Credit: Boston Bruins)
By: Evan Michael | Follow me on Twitter @00EvanMichael
In Part I… we made you fear the start of the season (and just in time for Halloween)!
In Part II… we showed you unless the Bruins stuff themselves with wins, it could be a Thankskilling in the standings!
Now, for their busiest month yet–December, comes Part III of the B’s calendar series. And like all “threequels”… there are bound to be surprises around every curve of the rink! So, let’s start at the top and cruise through the holiday season right up until NYE.
December 1st – 7th: “Livin’ On A Prayer”
The Boston Bruins at TD Garden are always a challenge, no matter the opponent. Especially when the fans get into the game (like they did in the above clip). Well, the B’s will have four consecutive games in front of those Bon Jovial fans to start December — one of their longest home stretches of the season. They’ll match-up for a Sunday funday fight on the 1st against their most historic & hated rivals: the Montreal Canadiens. Then they’ll play every other day through Saturday the 7th versus some “C-League” teams — Carolina, Chicago & Colorado. However, they’ll have to bring their “A-game” because outside of the ECF series sweep against the Canes this past season, the B’s have always struggled at home against the Blackhawks & Avalanche. That’s why this first week is very important for the team (and perhaps the eyes of management). It would behoove the B’s to stockpile as many points as possible while playing in front of their friendlies (who perhaps came from Friendly’s) because right after all this TD Garden time, it’ll be time to take this show on the road!
December 9th – 14th: “On The Road Again”
Just like the Willie Nelson song suggests, the B’s are no strangers to being on the road again for an extended period. For week number two of December, it’ll be a lot of North/South travel. The Bruins begin that stretch on Monday the 9th in Canada’s capital against the sorry Sens–a game they should definitely capitalize on. Why? Because next up, just down the street from our own Capitol, are the Washington Capitals in D.C. That city, and arena, have never been nice to the Bruins–politics aside. So, let’s vote for a win as opposed to lobbying for a loss, especially with the Lightning on the schedule the very next night. That’s right, a midweek back-to-back versus two of the top teams in the NHL–and on enemy ice. This will be as difficult of a 48-hour period the B’s will face all season long. And, as most road games against Tampa go, it’s on to Sunrise next for a post-Luongo-era match-up versus the Florida Panthers to end this four-gamer away from Boston.
As for December 15th – 31st, the B’s play five of those seven games at home–making the holiday season, at least schedule wise, the home stretch of ’19-’20. The most notable match-ups are not marquee but still worth watching/following as the Preds claw into town followed by the Caps just before Christmas. The B’s will round out 2019 with a matinee game in New Jersey, just in time for some bedeviled New Year’s celebrations we hope!
In short, the eight games to start December could be very telling as the B’s approach the midway point of their season. Will they look like the Eastern Conference Champs and Stanley Cup Runners-Up that they are? Or will the newly blended veteran/youth mixes be mixed up & already worn out? As we like to say, Mark Your ’19-’20 Bruins Calendar now… for all those “I Told You So” moments later!
Check out the Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 139 that we recorded on 8-2-19 below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Sticher.
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