MONTREAL - With a first-ever game against the Vegas Golden Knights in store for Tuesday night at the Bell Centre, the team at canadiens.com did a little digging to compile the Habs' record when welcoming expansion clubs to the NHL.
To keep things recent, the focus has been placed on the expansion window spanning the 1991-92 and 2000-01 seasons.
Relocated teams -- like the Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche, and Phoenix Coyotes -- have also been excluded from the results.
Nine new teams were born over the nine-year span between 1991 and 2000, namely, the San Jose Sharks, Ottawa Senators, Tampa Bay Lightning, Anaheim Ducks, Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators, Atlanta Thrashers, Minnesota Wild, and Columbus Blue Jackets.
Of the nine initial dates against those nascent foes, the Habs have won four, lost three, and tied two. Against Western teams, Montreal has gone 2-1-2-0; Against Eastern teams, the team has put up a 2-2-0-0 record.
Like on Tuesday against Vegas, the Canadiens have welcomed expansion opponents to Montreal first on six occasions, going 3-2-1-0 at home.
Current associate coach Kirk Muller played in four of those inaugural matchups, registering four assists. Assistant coach Jean-Jacques Daigneault, meanwhile, played in six -- including one as a member of the Nashville Predators! -- but was held off the scoresheet.
Patrice Brisebois also played in six games opposite expansion adversaries for the first time, while Brian Bellows has had the most success against NHL newcomers, racking up four goals and five assists in four games.
The Canadiens' game against the Senators was also the Ontario club's first in the NHL, making for some pretty memorable pregame ceremonies...