The Boston Bruins weren't the only team finalizing their opening night roster on Wednesday. Their American Hockey League affiliate in Providence also set its roster for the upcoming season, which opens on Friday when the Baby B's host Springfield.
The depth of the prospect pool in the Bruins' organization has been a boon to Providence, which will field one of the more exciting lineups in the club's 19-year run in Rhode Island.
Providence coach Rob Murray will open his third season behind the Providence bench with 25 players, including 14 forwards, nine defensemen and two goaltenders.
Up front, 2008 first-round pick Joe Colborne will begin his first full pro season with the club, while 2007 first-rounder Zach Hamill is back for his third year in Providence. Max Sauve and Jamie Arniel are among the other top prospects expected to fuel the offense, while Lane MacDermid and Jeff LoVecchio will bring toughness and energy and veterans Jeremy Reich, Wyatt Smith and Jordan Smotherman will supply leadership.
On defense, Boston's final cut Matt Bartkowski will join the team after he returns from Prague with the big club following this weekend's games with Phoenix. He'll be part of a blue-line corps that also includes fellow prospects Steve Kampfer and Yury Alexandrov, while holdovers Andrew Bodnarchuk and Jeff Penner and veteran newcomer Nathan McIver will add experience, leadership and grit.
In goal, the Bruins assigned Adam Courchaine to Reading (ECHL) on Wednesday. That leaves Matt Dalton and Michael Hutchinson to share the netminding duties, though veteran Nolan Schaefer is expected to take over the starting role once he is reassigned from Boston. The Bruins are allowed to go over the NHL's 23-man roster limit to carry a third goaltender for the games in Europe, but Schaefer will head to Providence once that trip is concluded.
The complete Providence roster:
Forwards: Jamie Arniel, Joe Colborne, Zach Hamill, Jordan Knackstedt, Jeff LoVecchio, Lane MacDermid, Kirk MacDonald, Levi Nelson, Jeremy Reich, Yannick Riendeau, Antoine Roussel, Maxime Sauve, Wyatt Smith, Jordan Smotherman
Defensemen: Yury Alexandrov, Matt Bartkowski, Andrew Bodnarchuk, Ryan Donald, Alain Goulet, Steve Kampfer, Nathan McIver, Jeff Penner, Cody Wild
Goaltenders: Matt Dalton, Michael Hutchinson