Minnesota e-mailed me yesterday with a countdown, 74 days until the season opener. Luckily in the snail mail I received my copy of NHL 96 for Sega Genesis. So my promise of the Cup must come true in the next 73 days or it will be hell to pay in 311 for the entire year. So here's your preview of the roster and a recap of the opening game of the 1995-96 season that took place last night at about 11:30 p.m. (Eastern time for those of us who still live in civilization).
The season will commence with as many players on the opening day roster as the Game will allow. I am not creating any players for the sheer fact that this really happened 14-15 years ago and I still think Sandy Moger is better than he actually was. I will then make the same trades as Harry and Co. did this season (don't go research it, surprise is way more fun). 10 minute periods, all penalties, and of course fighting. I was admittedly not very talented at video games my entire life, so this could be a rough journey. Here's your 1995-96 Boston Bruins (Row 12 style)
Adam Oates- Best Forward on the team this year
Cam Neely- Still great though injury prone
Kevin Stevens- Cokehead
Shawn McEachern- Lots of upside, big wheels
Todd Elik- Who? Seriously.....
Joe Mullen- Too good for the '80 US Olympic squad, couldn't hold Neely's jock
Ted Donato- Love Teddy, have to love Teddy
Steve Heinze- Again, who didn't love Heinzey
Steve Leach- One more time! Now just the ladies!
Dave Reid- 24/7, or 24 minus 7 = #17 Dave Reid All Day!
Jozef Stumpel- Yuck
Mariusz Czerkawski- Had upside at one point, promptly left it in a trash can in a Polish Airport
Tim Sweeney- Does a great job with the Bruins Foundation, Good Job Timmy!
Ray Bourque- Rated a 99 in the game, need I say more
Don Sweeney- Reliable, solid defenseman
John Gruden- Not the football coach, though this guy may have had better luck doing so
John Rohloff- Think short Hal Gill
Alexei Kasatonov- Last NHL season for a reason
Rick Zombo- Best defenseman name ever because he played like he was bitten
(There are a couple more, somehow I lost their names. No one better than the last 4 guys, so I'm sure you won't miss them. Al Iafrate was on the roster, however he was "recovering from knee surgery" all year and did not play. If the Mayor was old enough at the time I'd think he went on a weekend bender with him and took 2 years to recover)
Blaine Lacher- Came up huge in '94-95 lockout year. Flamed out quickly this year.
Vincent Riendeau- Did not play for the Bruins in '95-96. He is my one exception to the rule because there are no other goalies on the game who did play for the B's. Or at least until January that is, stay tuned for that mess.
1995-96 Game 1. Canadiens @ Bruins
So it all kicked off last night. Home opener, building opener, hated rivals, and I couldn't be more excited. I probably should have been well rested for this or at least tried my hand at a couple practice games to shake off the rust. Well I didn't because I firgured I'd just get the hang on the fly. Much tougher than I remembered, getting slow in my old age perhaps. But they played pretty good D. Lacher was a monster for the first 10, Pierre Turgeon had at least 6 breakaways. A couple close calls on Roy, Czerkawski slashed Brian Bellows and he was awarded a penalty shot which Lacher turned away with ease. Second Period was a snoozer except for Kevin Stevens pounding the bejesus out of Lyle Odelein who landed maybe two blows. The third was just a back and forth thriller, great time. Todd Elik pulled a Glen Wesley and missed a wide-open net on a rebound that had me out of my seat screaming. We dragged her into OT where current Bruin Mark Recchi, who was then a Canadien, gets an incredible breakaway and Lacher stones him cold. After trying to recover from hyperventilating, I make an outlet pass from Kasatonov that gets picked by Recchi for another breakaway and doesn't he just stuff it home. Outshot 38-29 by the Habs and out hit as well 21-20. So the B's are 0-1. Lets hope for a rebound tonight as I believe Ottawa is on deck and I won't have to face Patrick Roy. (Yes he does get traded to Colorado later this year, but funny thing is the Av's we're formed too late and the Nordiques are still in the game.) All for now.
As Always Lets Go The Bruins