PROVIDENCE, RI – The Albany Devils begin the 2016-17 campaign with a 7:05 pm start on the road against the Providence Bruins at Dunkin’ Donuts Center Friday. The Devils return to the ice for the first time since their last-minute loss, 4-3, during Game 7 of the Division Final against the Toronto Marlies on May 16.
• WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Roster Architecture: The Devils 25-man Opening Night roster includes 15 players (three rookies) who played at least one game with Albany last season. Of the 10 newcomers, seven signed as free agents this past offseason and three are first-year players.
Nearly half of the Devils’ defense is new this season after New Jersey signed Brandon Gormley, Andrew MacWilliam and Karl Stollery to two-way deals. Additionally, Josh Jacobs, who played one game in the AHL last season on an ATO enters his rookie season. Returning to the A-Devils blueline are Seth Helgeson, Vojtech Mozik and Reece Scarlett.
Fighting History: The Devils are opening the season on the road for the third consecutive year and for the seventh time in the franchise’s 11-year history. All-time the team is 1-7-1-1 during first games, including 1-3-1-1 road record. Albany’s last win during an opening game came on Oct. 11, 2014 in a 5-1 win at Adirondack.
Coleman’s Return: Blake Coleman returns to the Devils’ lineup after missing the majority of last season with a shoulder injury. In 14 games, he registered seven points (4g-3a) and a +5 rating.