100 seasons of opening nights

Tuesday, 14.10.2008 / 2:00 PM / News
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100 seasons of opening nights
MONTREAL -- Over the years, the Canadiens have rarely let another team come in and spoil their opening night party.  If history repeats itself, here is a numerical preview of what may be in store for the Bruins when the puck drops at the Bell Centre for the first time this season. 

64 – Years ago that the Habs were last shut out in their home opener. The last time Montreal was blanked in the inaugural game on home ice was in 1934 against the Detroit Red Wings. 

55 – Times the Canadiens have treated fans to a win in their home debut since the puck first dropped in 1909, with the team posting an opening night record of 55-27-15-1 in Montreal over that time. 

11 – Consecutive years between 1953 and 1963 that the Forum faithful celebrated a victory on opening night in the iconic arena. 

10 – Times the Canadiens lit the lamp against the Pittsburgh Penguins on October 7, 1976, setting a team record for goals scored on opening night, a mark that still stands today. That victory was the first of many for Scotty Bowman’s crew that year, as his 1976-77 Habs went on to pile up a record-setting 132 points during the regular season. 

8 – Times the Canadiens have topped Chicago in their home opener, making the Blackhawks the club’s favorite opening night victim.  The team has had almost as much success in their Montreal debuts against Boston, getting the better of the Bruins on seven occasions. 

3 – Canadiens players who have kicked off the season with a hat trick in the first game on home ice, including Aurèle Joliat (1929), Yvan Cournoyer (1973) and Pete Mahovlich (1974).

0 – Defeats suffered by the franchise in the home opener between 1953 and 1979, with Montreal posting a 24-0-3 mark over that span. 

Shauna Denis is a writer for canadiens.com