As the Hamilton Bulldogs prepare to host their first regular season home game in 582 days, we jump in the way-back machine to September 26th, 2015, to look back at the Bulldogs inaugural home opener and the success that has built from that moment.
When the Hamilton Bulldogs received their schedule for the 2015-16 season, it was going to be no easy task right out of the gates. The home opener was scheduled with the defending 2015 OHL & Memorial Cup Champion Oshawa Generals.
A crowd of 6,000 made their way into the FirstOntario Centre seats while the legendary Don Cherry addressed the Bulldogs in their dressing room, giving a sense of what this moment meant to hockey in Hamilton. As the lights went down Don Cherry, Hockey Hall of Fame defenseman Harry Howell & Team Canada multi-time Gold Medal winner Laura Fortino joined President Steve Staios and Owner Michael Andlauer to celebrate the OHL’s return to Hamilton.
The Bulldogs struck first early in the 1st period as Trent Fox took a rebound of a Stephen Harper shot and buried the puck past Generals’ goaltender Jeremy Brodeur, son of the legendary Martin Brodeur. Oshawa would turn the tables, led by now 2-time Stanley Cup Champion Anthony Cirelli, brining the Generals offense to life and a neck and neck battle would see a tie game in the third period.
With time ticking down and the Bulldogs on the power-play, Stephen Harper would get the puck out high from Cole Candella and his seeing-eye shot would deflect off Maurizio Colella finding its way to the back of the net giving the Bulldogs a late 4-3 lead. With the crowd on their feet and Charlie Graham stopping 29 of 32, the Bulldogs would down the defending Memorial Cup Champions in their first game on home ice.
Join us on Saturday, October 9th as we welcome hockey back inside the FirstOntario Centre for the first time in 582 days. The Bulldogs will host Eastern Conference rival Barrie Colts in what should be a game to remember, just like the first time the Dogs’ stepped on the ice to Hamilton fans.
Tickets for the October 9th opener are now on sale on ticketmaster.ca or through the box office. Gold seats are priced at $26 while Black will cost $22 each, and Family Packs are available starting at $60.00. Prices increase on Game Day so be sure to pick up your tickets in advance!