With the 2021-22 NHL season opening Tuesday in a game between the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning and Pittsburgh Penguins, plus a matchup of the league’s most recent expansion teams, the Vegas Golden Knights and Seattle Kraken, there are some interesting storylines out of New England.
The Penguins have a pair of regional natives on their blue line in veterans Brian Dumoulin (Biddeford, Maine) and John Marino (North Easton, Mass.). Dumoulin is one of the steadiest defensive players in the league, a member of both of Pittsburgh’s Stanley Cup-winning teams in 2016 and 2017.
Additionally, Hingham native and first-round pick in 2003, Brian Boyle is making a return to the NHL after not having a team to play for in 2020-21. As a veteran of over 800 career contests, the former St. Sebastian’s legend provides experience and depth to a Penguins roster that will be without Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin to start the season.
The Golden Knights and Kraken feature a few familiar faces in veteran Max Pacioretty (New Canaan, Conn.) and former Bruins second-rounder and Harvard star Ryan Donato (Scituate, Mass.) who is on his third team since being dealt to the Minnesota Wild early in 2019 for Charlie Coyle (East Weymouth, Mass.)