That’s exactly what’s happening. Robert Thomas and Jordan Kyrou will be playing on opening night, as will Sammy Blais and Ivan Barbashev, who are both up for another extended audition with the NHL club. So will surprise camp standout Niko Mikkola, the 22 year old Finnish defenseman. He was a sixth round draft pick (127th overall) in the 2015 draft, and he and Jordan Schmaltz are on the opening night roster courtesy of a Robert Bortuzzo suspension and a Carl Gunnarsson injury.
Here’s Thursday’s roster.
Forwards: Ivan Barbashev, Sammy Blais, Tyler Bozak, Jordan Kyrou, Pat Maroon, Ryan O’Reilly, David Perron, Brayden Schenn, Jaden Schwartz, Alexander Steen, Vladimir Tarasenko, Robert Thomas
Defense: Robert Bortuzzo, Jay Bouwmeester, Chris Butler, Vince Dunn, Joel Edmundson, Niko Mikkola, Colton Parayko, Alex Pietrangelo, Jordan Schmaltz
Goalies: Jake Allen, Chad Johnson
Injured Reserve: Oskar Sundqvist
Non-Roster: Robby Fabbri (injured), Erik Foley (injured), Carl Gunnarsson (injured), Jakub Jerabek (awaiting visa), Luke Opilka (injured), Nikita Soshnikov (injured)