The seamless corner glass at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard on Sunday morning. It will be changed once NHL rinks have the new product installed.
Word is that the installation of the Bell Centre’s new, flexible Plexiglass is being installed Sunday, and probably Monday, to be ready in time for Tuesday’s exhibition game against the Dallas Stars.
The new acrylic glass will feature more shock-absorption qualities than the seamless product in place since the Bell Centre opened in 1996. Fans sitting in the first few rows might notice a big difference – when players collide in the corners, the panes will bend back toward the crowd. Maybe a lot.
The glass won’t be scarred by pucks. By the sounds of things, there will be tear-off film strips that can be removed, much like they do with stock-car windshields and the visors on Formula One drivers.
The Canadiens’ Bell Sports Complex in Brossard was used as a test facility for the NHL last winter. The glass on the Habs’ practice rink will be replaced once all 30 NHL rinks have been outfitted with the league-standard Plexiglass.
Look, also, for a dramatically different look at the players’ benches at the Bell Centre. The stanchion that injured Habs’ forward Max Pacioretty last March when he was checked into it will be gone; apparently there will be no glass facing the ice between the teams, and a modified, smaller sheet of glass will separate the benches. The Canadiens’ backup goalie and the ice-level broadcaster will be sitting/standing ducks for flying pucks from here on in.
My story on Habs goalie Carey Price and his upcoming adjustment to the new glass, written at the team’s golf tournament last Wednesday, can be found here. Ignore reference to new boards; the ones currently at the Bell Centre, replaced two years ago, remain as is.