HARTFORD, January 5, 2011:  Whalers Sports & Entertainment president and COO Howard Baldwin, Jr. announced today that ex-Boston Bruins mainstays Rick Middleton and Reggie Lemelin will be on hand at the Connecticut Whale’s next home game Saturday, January 15 at the XL Center against the Providence Bruins, for a special promotional appearance.

CT WhaleMiddleton and Lemelin are among the former Bruin greats who will be taking the ice February 19 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, CT for the Hartford Whalers legends vs. Boston Bruins legends game.  The legends game is part of the “Harvest-Properties.com Whale Bowl”, the featured event of the two-week outdoor Whalers Hockey Fest spectacular at Rentschler Field that will include numerous collegiate, high school, prep school and youth hockey games.  The legends game will face off at 4:00 PM on February 19 and will be followed by the outdoor AHL game between the Connecticut Whale and the Providence Bruins at 7:00 PM.

At the Whale game on January 15, fans will get a chance to meet Middleton and Lemelin, and get their autographs, in the XL Center atrium from 6:00-7:00 PM, as well as to see the two ex-NHLers drop a ceremonial first puck before the Whale and Bruins lock horns in a 7:00 faceoff.

Middleton, a forward who earned the nickname “Nifty” for his deft puckhandling touch, played 12 seasons in a Bruin uniform from 1976-77 through 1987-88, and is the fourth-leading all-time scorer in franchise history, with 402 goals and 496 assists for 898 points in 881 games.  Prior to being acquired by Boston via trade in May of 1976, Middleton played two seasons with the New York Rangers.  In 1005 career NHL games, the Toronto native scored 448 goals and added 540 assists for 988 points.

Currently, Middleton is launching “Rick Middleton’s Weekend Warrior Hockey”, a premier three-on-three adult men’s no-check hockey league that will begin play January 8 at the recently-finished Pro Skills Training Facility in Peabody, MA.  Full information on Weekend Warrior Hockey can be found at http://weekendwarriorhockey.com.

Lemelin, a goaltender, was a Bruin for six of his 15 NHL seasons, suiting up for 183 games with Boston from 1987-88 through 1992-93.  The Sherbrooke, Quebec native was 92-62-17 during that time, with a 3.09 goals-against average and six shutouts.  Those totals rank Lemelin tenth all-time in franchise history in wins and games-played, and he is also tenth all-time among Bruin goaltenders in minutes-played (10,308).  Lemelin also saw NHL action with the Atlanta/Calgary Flames, and his NHL career totals show 507 games-played, a record of 236-162-63, a 3.46 GAA and 12 shutouts.

Tickets for the January 15 Whale/P-Bruins contest at the XL Center, and all 2010-11 Whale home games, are available now at the XL Center box office, through Ticketmaster Charge-by-Phone at 1-800-745-3000 and on-line at www.ctwhale.com.  Tickets start at $7 each at the XL Center ticket office on game day.

For information on Whale ticket packages, group sales and VIP packages, call (860) 728-3366.