Tommy Bennett | Follow Me On Twitter @TJBennettt37
The 2022-23 NHL season is in the rearview mirror. As historic and magical as last season was, it is time to focus on the new season. The Boston Bruins have undergone a slew of changes and have new faces on the team that are eager to get started. It will be time to hit the ice and kick off what will be a special year.
This season will be extra special as the Boston Bruins will enter the 100th season in franchise history. It will be special as so much has happened in the team’s history. The schedule has come out, and the Bruins know who they are playing and when. As everyone gears up for October, here are essential games on the schedule and their significance.
October 11 Against the Blackhawks (H)
The Boston Bruins regular season kicks off on October 11. It is also the home opener in what will celebrate the 100th season in team history. However, there is much more than this that is appealing for this matchup.
Coming into TD Garden is the number one overall selection, Connor Bedard. The hype surrounding him is enormous, and all eyes will watch him. In addition, this is the first meeting since the big trade that sent Taylor Hall and Nick Foligno to Chicago. Both players step onto TD Garden ice for the first time after the disappointing Game Seven loss.
It will be exciting to kick off the new season and, in enormous fashion, welcome the Blackhawks to town. In addition, the game is nationally televised on TNT.
October 30 Against the Florida Panthers (H)
This is the redemption game for the Boston Bruins. It may be a regular season matchup, but washing the sour taste out of their mouths is an excellent place to start. For the first time, the Boston Bruins will face off against the team that derailed their promising season.
The Florida Panthers return to where they made history and completed their comeback. Florida will be banged up to begin the season with key players out of the lineup, but this is a much-anticipated matchup.
In the competitive Atlantic Division, there are two significant points on the line early. The elite sniper in David Pastrnak vs the electrifying Matthew Tkachuk will be must-watch hockey.
November 2 Against the Toronto Maple Leafs (H)
Anytime the Bruins and Maple Leafs go head to head, you automatically circle this on your calendar. But the first matchup of the season occurs on this date. There is so much to love about this matchup.
Both Boston and Toronto made moves to get bigger and tougher. The roof of TD Garden would blow off if Milan Lucic drops the gloves with Ryan Reaves. Much like the Chicago game, a familiar face walks back into town.
After being a fan favorite after the trade deadline, Tyler Bertuzzi is a Maple Leaf. Signing a one-year deal there helps intensify the rivalry and even with the fan base.
Given the history between these two teams in recent years, fireworks could be set off early in their first matchup of the season.
November 27 Against the Blue Jackets (R)
As unwatchable as the Columbus Blue Jackets were last season, that may not be the case this season. Mike Babcock is the new bench boss, and the team is healthy.
As prolific as Johnny Gaudreau is as a hockey player, the Bruins get to see another rookie for the first time. Third-overall pick Adam Fantilli has signed his entry-level contract and could be with the big club immediately.
Growing up a Bruins fan was special to him, and stepping on the ice in Boston will be a special moment for him. This will be a good game for the Bruins against a revamped blue line in Columbus.
December 13 Against the Devils (R)
This game is a great measuring stick for the Boston Bruins. Last season the Bruins defeated the Devils all three times. However, two of the three games were decided by one goal. Even though the Bruins roster looks different, so does the Devils.
New Jersey has a fantastic off-season by bringing back Timo Meier and Jesper Bratt. In addition, the club added another 30-goal scorer in Tyler Toffoli. While they saw two key veterans walk away on the back end, they’ll get their first look at promising rookie Luke Hughes.
This game will feature a great offensive team in New Jersey against a stingy Boston defense. Hughes vs McAvoy. Hischier vs Lindholm. Get the popcorn ready.
January 11 Against the Golden Knights (R)
This one is short, simple, and sweet. Even though he made his return to Boston and got the tribute he deserved, Bruce Cassidy faces his old team once again. Except this time, things are different.
Bruce Cassidy is a Stanley Cup Champion, and in just his first season since being let go from Boston, he captured the championship. He even brought the trophy to Cape Cod and took a picture with Bruins’ legend Ray Bourque. The Bruins will get a good look at the defending champions and will do it in Vegas. The Bruins got bigger and heavier and this game has the makings of a physical heavy checking game.
March 5 Against the Oilers (H)
It is always a special treat when the Oilers come to town. Sure, TD Garden gets packed to see their beloved Bruins. But let’s be honest with ourselves when everyone is excited to see Connor McDavid.
The most electrifying player in the world is coming to Boston and it only happens once a year.
He is coming off a Hart Trophy-winning season and in historic fashion. McDavid scored 64 goals and 153 points and helped lead the way for the Oilers. His partner in crime, Leon Draisaitl, is also coming to town. The Oilers are a fun offensive group and will be another good measuring stick game for the team.
April 9 Against the Hurricanes (R)
It would be wonderful if this game were in Boston because the Bruins record in Raleigh is not very good. March 26, 2023, was their first win in that building since the sweep in the 2019 Eastern Conference Finals. Depending on where the Bruins are in the standings, securing the two points will be tough.
This Bruins will need to win, and it will not come easy. Like the rest of the division, Carolina loaded up. It will be the second time seeing him, but Dmitry Orlov will get to face his old squad again.
In a game that will have a playoff-type feel to it, the two points will be extra important for the Boston Bruins. The games between these two teams has been physical and the rivalry is there. They’ll take on this same Hurricanes team a few days later on home ice.
April 16 Against the Senators (H)
This game could mean everything when it is all said and done. The Boston Bruins and Ottawa could have two massive points on the line with playoff implications as well. In the competitive Atlantic Division, this final game will mean a lot to both teams.
The Ottawa Senators are a team on the rise and have a young core in place. In addition, they finally have a goaltender that can hold down the fort. A game with playoff-type feelings to it and against a division rival is a great way to kick off fan appreciation day at TD Garden.
Let the stars shine brightly. Brady Tkachuk, David Pastrnak, Tim Stutzle, Charlie McAvoy, and Brad Marchand. Does not get any better than this