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Bruins set to remain a national TV fixture in 2023

Aug 02, 2023

Don Sweeney and the Bruins are certainly going through their share of changes, and there’s plenty of unknowns when it comes to just what they’ll be in 2023-24 after a record-breaking regular season in 2022-23.

But the Bruins’ status as a national TV draw is still very much in effect, with the Bruins’ 2023-24 slate littered with primetime games across multiple networks, as revealed by the NHL on Wednesday afternoon.

Boston won’t have to wait long to get on the national stage, either, as the Bruins’ Opening Night game against 2023 No. 1 overall pick Connor Bedard and the Blackhawks will air on TNT on Wednesday, Oct. 11. That game, which will be played at TD Garden, will also feature the Boston return of both Taylor Hall and Nick Foligno, who were dumped on the Blackhawks in what was a cap-clearing trade to rid the B’s of Hall’s $6 million cap hit.

The primetime slate for the Bruins will feature a mix of games on TNT, ESPN, ABC, and will also feature streaming-only games on both ESPN+ and Hulu. And excluding those streaming-only contests, the Bruins are tied with the Vegas Golden Knights and Pittsburgh Penguins for the second-most nationally-televised broadcasts, with 13. Only the Colorado Avalanche (15) have more nationally-televised games on the docket for the 2023-24 season.

The complete schedule of national games, all of which can be heard on 98.5 The Sports Hub, goes as follows…

Wednesday, October 11: Chicago Blackhawks at Boston Bruins, TNT, 7:30 p.m. ET

Tuesday, October 24: Boston Bruins at Chicago Blackhawks, ESPN/ ESPN+, 8:30 p.m. ET

Thursday, November 2: Toronto Maple Leafs at Boston Bruins, ESPN+/Hulu, 7:30 p.m. ET

Wednesday, November 22: Boston Bruins at Florida Panthers, TNT, 7 p.m. ET

Wednesday, December 13: Boston Bruins at New Jersey Devils, TNT, 7:30 p.m. ET

Wednesday, December 27: Boston Bruins at Buffalo Sabres, TNT, 7:30 p.m. ET

Thursday, January 4: Pittsburgh Penguins at Boston Bruins, ESPN, 7 p.m. ET

Wednesday, January 24: Carolina Hurricanes at Boston Bruins, TNT, 7:30 p.m. ET

*National broadcast will not be available in the local market

Saturday, February 10: Washington Capitals at Boston Bruins, ABC/ESPN+, 3:30 p.m.

Wednesday, February 21: Boston Bruins at Edmonton Oilers, TNT, 10 p.m. ET

Tuesday, March 5: Edmonton Oilers at Boston Bruins, ESPN+/Hulu, 7:30 p.m. ET

Saturday, March 9: Pittsburgh Penguins at Boston Bruins, ABC/ESPN+, 3 p.m. ET

Wednesday, March 27: Boston Bruins at Tampa Bay Lightning, TNT, 7:30 p.m. ET

*National broadcast will not be available in the local market

Saturday, April 6: Florida Panthers at Boston Bruins, ABC/ESPN+, 3:30 p.m. ET

Saturday, April 13: Boston Bruins at Pittsburgh Penguins, ABC/ESPN+, 8 p.m. ET

The Bruins are going to celebrate their centennial season in style.

That includes their look on the ice, too, with the Bruins set to introduce three new jerseys for the 2023-24 season.

“In partnership with adidas and the NHL, the Boston Bruins developed three new uniforms that will be introduced and worn in the Centennial year,” the team confirmed in a release. “These new uniforms include both home and away sweaters, as well as an alternate intended to be worn against Original Six opponents and on special occasions.

“All three uniforms will feature a commemorative Centennial patch worn on the right shoulder to mark this historic milestone and will be unveiled on Saturday, September 16 during the Boston Bruins Centennial Takeoff event. Each uniform will be available for sale immediately on-site and online at, and in-store at the ProShop, powered by ’47 at The Hub on Causeway beginning Sunday, September 17.”

As for where the Bruins are going to go with their three new jerseys, we do have some slight context clues so far.

By now, we know the special logo the Bruins are going to don celebrating their 100-year anniversary. The Bruins actually released that logo during the 2023 Winter Classic at Fenway Park.

Bruins just dropped their centennial logo.

The Bruins also revealed that their crest will by all means ‘flip’ in 2023-24, with the normal black ‘B’ reverting back to gold (same for the circle keeping it all together), while the spokes will go from gold with black outlining to just black.

Boston’s recent sweater number reveal posts on Twitter have also potentially confirmed (or maybe not at all) that they may be doing something funky with how the numbers look on that player’s sweater, with the outline of the numbers appearing to have some sort of ‘stitching’ effect on them.

Some new numbers have entered the chat 🙌

But the B’s will have no shortage for inspiration to draw from when it comes to designing a new sweater, as the Bruins have unveiled historic nod after historic nod on the alternate or special edition jersey front of late.

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – JANUARY 02: David Pastrnak #88 of the Boston Bruins warms up prior to a game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2023 Discover NHL Winter Classic at Fenway Park. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

The latest Winter Classic jersey donned by the club, the 2023 Winter Classic jersey paid homage to the stitched bear — referred to in-house as ‘Tiger Bear’ but known by most as ‘Meth Bear’ — and its ‘BOSTON’ font above the bear paid tribute to a logo worn by the club in the 1940s. The Bruins decided to extend this jersey’s shelf life beyond their win over the Penguins at Fenway Park, too, as it was worked into the mix as an alternate jersey down the stretch in 2023.

Nov 19, 2022; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy (73) congratulates left wing Taylor Hall (71) after his goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during the third period at TD Garden. (Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports)

The Bruins, against their own preferences, gave the fans what they wanted last year with the return of the ‘Pooh Bear’ jersey as the team’s newest ‘Reverse Retro’ jersey. Switching from gold to white as its base color, the Bruins wore this jersey six times in 2022-23, and posted a 5-0-1 record in it. If this jersey follows the path of the original Reverse Retro, it will be yet another one-off and we will not see it in 2023-24 or beyond for that matter.

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – APRIL 15: David Krejci #46 of the Boston Bruins skates against the New York Islanders during the first period at TD Garden on April 15, 2021 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Everything about the pandemic-delayed 2021 season was just straight-up bizarre. It’s one of those things that kinda baffles me when I sit and think about it. I mean, I actually straight-up covered empty-arena games where they pumped artificial chants and crowd noise in for two and a half hours. Sometimes the crowd noise would still linger and play long after the game had ended, and it was within those moments that I felt that I was indeed living in some sort of nightmarish dystopian simulation. Honestly, we might be, but that was especially jarring.

Anyway, one cool thing that came out of that season: The NHL and adidas teaming up for the ‘Reverse Retro’ jerseys, which put a modern (and often colorful) spin on an old jersey. For the Bruins, that meant a gold version of the jerseys worn during the Bourque-Neely era of B’s hockey. And, I don’t know about you, but I loved these jerseys. They were so crisp and sharp looking, and count me as one of those that always felt the Bruins needed more than just a hint of gold in their uniforms. You can’t be the ‘black and gold’ and have a 95-5 split of said colors.

These jerseys have not made an appearance since that 2021, however, as the league decided that the first round of ‘Reverse Retro’ jerseys would be a one-off. (Bring them back. They were amazing.)

Oct 27, 2022; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron (37) congratulates left wing Brad Marchand (63) after he scored against the Detroit Red Wings during the third period at TD Garden. (Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports)

Boston’s current third jersey (they wear the hell out of these during the first half of every season, it feels like), the ‘Block B’ alternate is essentially what happens if you splice the 2019 Winter Classic jersey with the third jersey first introduced in 2008. This jersey pays homage to the franchise’s days before the B became spoked, which was the case up until the 1950s. Everything about this sweater screams Milt Schmidt, to be honest.

The future of this jersey is currently unknown, as the Bruins obviously plan on introducing three new jerseys for this upcoming season and have two new contenders added to the mix with the 2022 Reverse Retro and 2023 Winter Classic jersey kicking around as potential options for the club.

Jan 1, 2019; South Bend, IN, USA; Boston Bruins right wing David Pastrnak (88) heads to the ice during the 2019 Winter Classic hockey game against the Chicago Blackhawks at Notre Dame Stadium. (Matt Cashore/USA TODAY Sports)

The Bruins threw it back to the 1930s with their 2019 Winter Classic jersey worn for their showdown with the Blackhawks at Notre Dame. This jersey didn’t survive beyond the 2019 stretch run, however, as the Bruins opted not to utilize it as an alternate following the 2018-19 season. In my opinion, the Bruins did not get the appropriate mileage out of this sweater, ’cause it looked reeeeeal sweet against fellow Original Six teams.

FOXBORO, MA – JANUARY 01: Patrice Bergeron of the Bruins controls the puck in the second period against the Montreal Canadiens during the 2016 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Gillette Stadium on January 1, 2016. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

The 2016 Winter Classic was not a hit for the Bruins.

In fact, it was probably one of the most forgettable games you’ve ever watched. (No, seriously, everything about this game was pure trash, and there are people within the B’s walls who considered that a cursed week for the club.) But the jersey worn by the Bruins for that disaster at Gillette Stadium? Well, that was a touchdown.

In fact, as of 2023, this jersey currently remains the only Winter Classic jersey to remain in the Black and Gold’s rotation for more than one season, as the B’s used this as their third jersey during the 2016-17 season.

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS — Cal Clutterbuck of the Minnesota Wild and Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins on January 6, 2010 at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Fittingly, this all-black jersey was introduced on Black Friday 2008.

In addition to the Bruins’ secondary logo featured as the primary logo, this third saw the Bruins go full ‘Time Bomb’ by Rancid with a black shirt, black pants, and black socks. This was the start of the Bruins toying with the idea of black socks instead of their once-normal gold (14 years later and the Bruins now wear black socks at home on a full-time basis). Not sure about you, but whenever I see this jersey, I think of Marc Savard whipping up some power-play wizardry along the half wall in a Saturday win over some poor souls. I can’t explain it. It’s just who and what I see. Honorable mentions, again, for whatever reason: Byron Bitz, Michael Ryder, and Dennis Wideman.

This jersey was replaced by the 2016 Winter Classic jersey as the B’s third in 2016.

BOSTON – JANUARY 01: Tim Thomas #30 of the Boston Bruins looks on from the net before the game against the Philadelphia Flyers during the 2010 Bridgestone Winter Classic at Fenway Park on January 1, 2010 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Elsa/Getty Images)

Of the B’s four Winter Classic jerseys to date, this one got the least amount of mileage. The Bruins wore this jersey at the 2010 Winter Classic at Fenway Park, and I believe they wore it one other time before the end of the 2010 season, and in what I believe was a matinee against Vancouver. (I remember Johnny Boychuk took a puck to the face area in this jersey, and that was about a month or so after the Winter Classic, I wanna say.)

The Bruins took it out of circulation at the end of the season and we haven’t seen it since.

PITTSBURGH – DECEMBER 30: Goaltender Tim Thomas #30 of the Boston Bruins celebrates a 5-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins with teammates Shane Hnidy #34 and Phil Kessel #81 on December 30, 2008. (Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

Moving ahead with what felt like an organizationally rebrand — the team fired Dave Lewis after just one season and hired Claude Julien, and really started to flesh out their team identity for their new era — the primary jerseys worn by the Bruins to this day were introduced in 2007 and have really been the face of the ‘Bergeron Era’ of B’s hockey. (Bergeron had three seasons in the old sweaters and then 16 in this version, so you do to the math.)

These jerseys have really been a nod to the Bruins of old, too, with the stripes on the sleeves thrown back into the mix, along with the ‘shoulder’ pad coloring that broke up the sweater. And for almost 17 years, this jersey has remained almost completely untouched, with its greatest change coming with the socks worn by the Bruins.

BOSTON, MA – JUNE 06: (L-R) Nathan Horton #18, Zdeno Chara #33 and Milan Lucic #17 of the Boston Bruins skate down the ice during Game Three against the Vancouver Canucks in the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden. (Elsa/Getty Images)

And though the on-ice roster matters infinitely more than the sweater worn, you can see why the Bruins have been reluctant to move on from these sweaters, as they have posted a league-best 729 wins and .646 points percentage since this rebrand was introduced ahead of the 2007-08 season.

This is also the sweater combo worn by the Bruins in their trips to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2011, 2013, and 2019.

Marco Sturm of the Boston Bruins on March 22, 2007 at the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Getty Images.)

The replacement for ‘Pooh Bear’ in 2006-07, this jersey paid tribute to the Orr era of Bruins hockey, and was typically worn whenever the Bruins played an Original Six team. This jersey was influential in a major way, too, as it reminded the Bruins just how classic and clean this template looked, and it was essentially remodeled with modern tweaks for the franchise’s 2007-08 rebrand.

21 Mar 1998: Leftwinger Per-Johan Axelsson of the Boston Bruins in action during a game against the Buffalo Sabres at the Marine Midland Arena in Buffalo, New York. The Bruins defeated the Sabres 2-1. (Mandatory Credit: Craig Melvin /Allsport)

The most infamous jersey of the bunch, the gold ‘Pooh Bear’ was one of those jerseys that you either loved or hated. Rarely was someone in the middle when it comes to this one. And if they were in the middle, you were immediately suspect of their motives. “Did their dad design the jersey? Was there a school picture of them wearing this jersey on picture day kicking around somewhere (I must plead the fifth on this one)? Were they a huge fan of 2000 masterpiece Most Valuable Primate? How do they not have a hard stance on this jersey?”

Some quick facts to explain how long the original Pooh Bear has been around and how long it’s been out of circulation: Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron was the last active NHL player to wear this jersey. Zdeno Chara, who spent a decade and a half with the team, never wore this jersey. And this was the jersey ex-Bruins captain Joe Thornton wore in his final home game as captain of the Boston Bruins. It’s got some history, I guess.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – APRIL 1: Dennis Wideman #6, Zdeno Chara #33 and Andrew Alberts #41 of the Boston Bruins look on from the bench against the New Jersey Devils at Continental Airlines Arena on April 1, 2007. (Norman Y. Lono/Getty Images)

Perhaps the only ‘dud’ in the 100-year sweater history of the Bruins, the Bruins went with a mid-90s rebrand that gave the club an entirely new look (at least from a sweater standpoint) that robbed the team of its unique flavor and appeal. The biggest change came on the shoulders and sleeves, with the gold or black on the shoulders extending all the way down to the wrists of the jersey.

BOSTON – MARCH 8: Marc Savard #91 of the Boston Bruins handles the puck during the game against the Minnesota Wild on March 8, 2007 at the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

And though this jersey was worn by both Cam Neely and Ray Bourque towards the end of their respective tenures with the franchise, this jersey is perhaps most known for it being the B’s primary sweater through the Joe Thornton and Sergei Samsonov era of Bruins hockey.

This jersey was also worn by Zdeno Chara during his first season with the club.

Click here for 98.5 The Sports Hub’s complete coverage of the Bruins.

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for He has been covering the Bruins since 2010, and has been a member of the Boston chapter of the PHWA since 2013. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.

Connor BedardTaylor HallNick FolignolovedClick here for 98.5 The Sports Hub’s complete coverage of the Bruins.