The Montreal Canadiens Get Ready for a Special Home Opener

Miah D.Senior Writer IOctober 15, 2008

You have loved them. You have hated them. Now, they are back again for another roll!

Tonight, you will be presented with the 2008-2009 edition of the Montreal Canadiens.

The context of this evening’s opener will be special and the timing couldn’t be better. For the first time in several years, fans will meet a competitive team just in time for the centenary celebrations.

They set the table last year with a first spot in the Eastern Conference to everyone’s surprise. The regular season has been the dream season for the fans. But the playoffs proved that some things were still missing.

General Manager Bob Gainey made all the necessary adjustments, bringing back a team with more experience, talent, and toughness. Expectations are high.

But for once, it seems they can live up to the hopes.

Tonight will be also the official start to the Montreal Canadiens' birthday bash. A hundred years of history, traditions, and glory. Some years were less glorious. But hey, live and learn!

As part of the ceremony, the organization will inaugurate the Ring of Honour as a tribute to the Montreal Canadiens' great players who have been inducted to the Hockey Hall of Fame. Emile ‘Butch’ Bouchard and Elmer Lach—the two oldest members of the organization—will take part to the celebration.

Through those seasons, stories were written, traditions created. They have beaten the best and lost to the worst. They have also been part of great rivalries.

To mark the moment, the Boston Bruins will be there tonight.

The last time these teams met, Montreal finally won the best-of-seven series, but not without hard work.

Indeed, not shy of an 8-0 record during the regular season series against Boston, Montreal got a cold shower from Zdeno Chara and his crew, and landing back home for a game seven.

Summer has passed, and he who used to be one of ours is now one of them. Looking for a fresh start to his career, Michael Ryder decided to sign with the enemy. According to the latest updates, he is doing quite good.

As George Laraque finally cleared the injury list, all three new players on the Montreal Canadiens will sport their new colours and will hit the ice in front of the home crowd.

Enjoy tonight’s ceremony, and most of all, have a great season.