It’s hard to believe, but the Habs are approaching 20 years of calling the Bell Centre home. The cherished Forum may be a landmark from a different era, but Montreal’s perpetually obsessed with showcasing the heritage of the legendary franchise. History is marvellous, but Canadiens fans are also praying to see a Cup be paraded around in their club’s current building.
Montreal Canadiens Stadium
Opened in 1996 with a big lavish ceremony to celebrate the transition of the franchise from the Forum to its new digs, the Canadiens haven’t been quite as successful in their current home. Rounds 1, 2 and 3 have all been explored by the Habs, but the franchise hasn’t ventured anywhere beyond that point. Considering that the current lineup boasts Carey Price, P.K. Subban and Alex Galchenyuk, the hope burns brightly that history will be made rather than just replayed on the Jumbotron. There definitely have been some memorable moments at the Bell Centre. The 2014 franchise tribute to Jean Beliveau ranks highly, as does the return of Saku Koivu and Tom Kostopoulos potting an OT winner in 2008.
As you might expect, Canadiens games are regularly sold out with the 20,000+ seat building packed without issue. In 2014-15, Montreal fed off that energy and gave up only nine regulation losses in the Bell Centre. The home ice advantage appeared to evaporate in the postseason with half of Montreal’s six losses coming in front of the Quebec crowd.
Date Opened: 1996
Construction Cost: $270 Million
Architect: LeMay & Associate, LLC, LeMoyne Lapointe Magne
Capacity Attendance: 21,287
Has A Stanley Cup Final Been Played There: No
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