For the fourth time in the last 11 years, the Boston Bruins will be taking the ice in an outdoor game. Their record in outdoor games up to this point is 2–1. This year, they will be facing off against the Philadelphia Flyers on Lake Tahoe in California. This will be the first time the B’s will be playing outdoors, aside from the actual Winter Classic, which typically takes place on New Year’s Day. So, let’s take a look back at how the Bruins have fared in the past in outdoor games.
Bruins vs. Flyers at Fenway Park, Jan. 1, 2010.
To look back at the Bruins first winning classic game, we would have to go all the way back to the year before they last won the Stanley Cup. This was a tightly contested game, as the Bruins barely forced overtime with a tying goal from the grizzled veteran, Mark Recchi, with about two minutes left in regulation. Finally, two minutes into overtime, a then 24-year-old Patrice Bergeron fed a beautiful pass to Marco Sturm for the game winner.
Bruins vs. Canadiens at Gillette Stadium, Jan. 1, 2016
After their one and only win in the winter classic at the time, the Bruins got a chance to maintain a perfect record against their archrival, the Montréal Canadiens. However, this wound up being a game that Boston fans would love to forget. The Bruins seemed doomed at the start of the game, as they knew that they would be without their biggest offensive threat in Brad Marchand, due to a suspension. Throughout the game, the Bruins looked flat-footed and couldn’t muster much offense. With some great goaltending by Montreal’s Mike Condon and some fortunate Canadien bounces, the Bruins were trounced by a score of 5–1.
Bruins vs. Blackhawks at Notre Dame, Jan. 1, 2019
The most recent outdoor game the Bruins played was just two years ago against the Chicago Blackhawks. By this time, the Bruins had already assembled the “Perfection Line” which consisted of Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, and David Pastrnak. That line was responsible for three of the four goals the Bruins scored against the Blackhawks. However, the game winning goal was scored by fourth-liner Sean Kuraly, which resulted in a 4–2 victory for Bruins.
Bruins vs. Flyers part two, Feb. 21, 2021
Now the Bruins will get their second shot at the Flyers, 11 years after their last outdoor game against each other. So far this season, the Bruins have gotten the best of the Flyers, as Boston has yet to lose to them in four matchups. The Bruins are one of the best defensive teams in the league as they rank second in goals allowed per game. On the other side of the spectrum, the Flyers rank third in the league in goals scored per game. Based on those stats, the game will come down to whether or not the Bruins can hold off the high-powered Flyers offense. The Flyers have been one of the worst teams on the defensive end thus far; therefore, if the Bruins can keep the Flyers under three goals, Boston should come out with a win. Despite the Bruins success against the Flyers this season, Philadelphia has one of the best rosters in the NHL, and it should be a very tight game at Lake Tahoe.