June 20th, 2011 by

Fan Poll: Who do you want the Bruins to play opening night?

The Bruins home opener will be something special, there’s no doubt. The Garden will be rocking as the Bruins 2011 Stanley Cup banner is raised to its new home among the rafters.

As much as Bruins fans never want this to end, the puck will eventually have to drop on the 2011-12 season and the Bruins will have to play a game that night, now the question of against who will it be against begins.

Let’s take a look at five teams Bruins fans would enjoy having in the building as the Bruins raise banner number six.

Montreal Canadiens: The most obvious choice to any Bruins fan would be their lifetime rivals to the north. Having Montreal in the building knowing they had a 2-0 lead when heading home in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, only to let the Bruins back in it and ultimately lose to Boston in Game 7 would be awesome. A Canadiens and Bruins opening night would only add to the excitement that already will flowing in the Garden.

Toronto Maple Leafs: Tyler Seguin, Tomas Kaberle, and Tuukka Rask, three players who helped the Bruins throughout both the regular and post season all are tied to the Maple Leafs in different ways. Then there’s Phil Kessel. Bruins fans love to heckle and boo the former Bruin every time his stick touches the puck on Garden ice. How electrifying would a “Thank You Kessel” chant be as banner number six gets raised to the rafters?

Florida Panthers: The Panthers chipped into the Bruins Stanley Cup just as much as any other team. Last season they sent the Bruins defensemen Dennis Seidenberg. This offseason they sent us Nathan Horton and Gregory Campbell, all three were huge during the Bruins playoff run. Maybe when the Bruins get their rings, some should be made for some of the Panthers front office.

Tampa Bay Lightning: Much like the Canadiens, the Lightning could have prevented this from happening. The Bruins defeated the Lightning in seven games in the Eastern Conference Final. A 1-0 loss is something that will take some time to heal. Having the Bruins host the Lightning on opening night would be adding salt to the wound.

Vancouver Canucks: Although it’s unlikely that a team from out west would start the season on the east coast, a Stanley Cup Final rematch on opening night would be amazing. The look on the faces of villains Ryan Kesler, Alex Burrows, and the Sedin twins as the Bruins remember their championship season would be pleasing for Bruins fans. Sitting in the same building where they had their chance to win the Stanley Cup in Game 6, as the Bruins raise their banner would be painful for the defending Western Conference Champions.

So Bruins fans, who do you want to see in the Garden on banner night?

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