Dalton/By S. Bradley

PROVIDENCE — With the assignment of Adam Courchaine to Reading of the ECHL, the Providence Bruins are going to open their season with Matt Dalton and Michael Hutchinson as their two goaltenders.

Dalton will be the opening-night starter against Springfield at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center Friday night.

“Between the three of them, they were all very, very equal. It’s hard to discern. Nobody really rose to the top, nobody really bombed either,” said Providence head coach Rob Murray after his team practiced at The Dunk this morning.

Murray said that Courchaine’s demotion isn’t necessarily permanent. Reading plays two exhibition games in the days ahead and that’ll give Courchaine a chance to do something he hasn’t been able to do too often during training camp — get into game action. So far Courchaine has only appeared in one rookie game and part of an AHL exhibition game.

Dalton will be given a chance to start both of this weekend’s games (the P-Bruins play at Springfield Saturday) is he earns it Friday. Otherwise, Hutchinson would get the nod against the Falcons.

Of course, the goaltending situation will get a little blurry next week when Boston returns from Prague. Nolan Schaefer, who’s the Bruins’ third goalie right now, should be assigned and that will make it a three-goalie battle again in Providence. While Hutchinson is eligible to return to his junior team in London (OHL), the P-Bruins could also assign him or any of their goaltenders to Alaska of the ECHL in addition to Reading.