OMG It’s Opening Night

ur doin it wrong

FINALLY.

As of tomorrow morning we’ll have real honest-to-goodness NHL hockey to talk about. Like, hits and saves, goals and scraps, upsets and extended suspensions awkwardly presented to us by Brendan Shannahan. Can’t wait.

If you see anything truly awful or awesome, you can pass it along to us here at backhandshelf@thescore.com so we can feature it.

Here’s what’s on tap for you on OPENING NIGHT IN THE NHL, with our own special categories.

Philadelphia Flyers vs. Boston Bruins

What we’re excited about: I’m most excited to get my first look at the new and I’m-not-sure-yet Philadelphia Flyers. While there’s reason to be bummed Brayden Shenn isn’t playing (it’d be nice to see the complete team): patience young Bourne, patience. Tough draw for the Flyers though – things are going to be doubly exciting thanks to the Stanley Cup Champions banner that’ll be raised. They’ll be facing a fired-up defending champion.

Person on either roster you’d most like to face-punch: Has to be Brad Marchand right? I mean, now that Carcillo is gone and all. I guess there’s always Pronger if you’d like to hit someone on the Flyers.

Player on either team you’d most like as a linemate/d-partner: I’m gonna say Claude Giroux, because I feel like I’d rack up goals from him basically just bouncing pucks off my stick whether I knew he was passing or not.

Prediction: Tim Thomas shuts the door HARD, Bryz gives up 4+ and Philly’s season starts in a panic. WHERE’S MICHAEL LEIGHTON?

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Montreal Canadiens

What we’re excited about: Reading opposing fan tweets during the game. There’s so much tradition with these two original six teams that arguments can date back to roughly an eon ago. It will be exciting to see a healthy Lupul and Lomardi, and exciting to see Cammelleri test Reimer with a one-knee down one-time bomb up near his ears.

Person on either roster you’d most like to face-punch: I pass on my punch for this game. I have very little hate for anyone on either roster, so you, lucky reader, can have two.

Player on either team you’d most like as a linemate/d-partner: I want Scott Gomez, but circa many many years ago. This guy is an assist machine that floats over the ice like some waterbug/hovercraft hybrid.

Prediction: Canadiens win, which sets the Toronto fan/media madness in motion, so they manage to blow their soft schedule to start, so Toronto fans get to keep being the Toronto fans I know and love.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Vancouver Canucks

What we’re excited about: Any time you put together two star-studded teams with President’s Cup potential on the ice to start each other, it’s going to be a lot of fun to watch. I’ll be watching to see whether Malkin is more Malkin-y than the way he Malkin’d about the ice last year is going to be my top priority.

Person on either roster you’d most like to face-punch: Can I punch Matt Cooke using Max Lapierre’s face? I need lay out my own rules better on this stuff here.

Person on either team you’d most like as a linemate/d-partner: Henrik Sedin. The Sedins are wizards (Alex Burrows nods, counts another stack of money), Henrik is slightly dish-ier, and I love the glory of goal scoring.

Prediction: The Pens are excited about potentially having a season with their three big centers ready to rock before long, and the Canucks aren’t mentally ready to get back in “prepare” mode like they were the last 20+ games they played.

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Have a fun night guys. I’ll be watching and tweeting from my couch, so be sure to add me, say hello, and get in the conversation. Wagner’s next post should be up shortly!