NHL releases Flyers' 2012-13 schedule
Just a day ahead of Friday's draft, the Flyers, in conjunction with the National Hockey League, released their schedule for the 2012-13 season
"We're anxious to get back on the ice and begin preparing for the start of the 2012-13 season,” said Comcast-Spectacor President Peter Luukko. "We know our fans are just as excited."
Fans will get to show that enthusiasm during the team's home opener on Oct. 11. Like last year, the Flyers will start their season against the Boston Bruins, but unlike last year, the Bruins won't hanging any banners, and the game will be played at Wells Fargo Center.
Per usual, the team will depart for its annual Disney on Ice road trip when it plays eight straight games away from Wells Fargo, traveling to New Jersey and Ottawa before heading south to Nashville and then west to St. Louis, Phoenix, Los Angeles and San Jose before returning to Canada for the second time on the trip to wrap things up in Vancouver. It's a 13-day, 7,300-mile journey starting on Dec. 21, taking the team through the new year and up to Jan. 6.
The stretch is the Flyers' longest on the road, but the team also faces two five game trips in late-November and mid-February. Their longest homestand is a five-game stretch from Feb 21. to Mar. 1 against the Panthers, Avalanche, Rangers, Capitals and Islanders.
As realignment has yet to come to fruition, the league has retained the same scheduling matrix as in years' past, with the Flyers playing each of their division rivals six times -- three games at home and three on the road -- and each of their other conference rivals four times -- twice at home and twice on the road.
That's 64 games against the Eastern Confernce, leaving just 18 against the West. For fans hoping to get a look at Jeff Carter, Mike Richards and the defending Stanley Cup champion Kings, they won't be making the cross-country flight to Philadelphia this year. The Flyers will play the Kings just once on Jan. 3 as part of their aforementioned eight-game road swing. Instead, the Flyers will play only three home-and-home series against the West with the Blackhawks, Wild and Sharks.
Other dates of interest include the Flyers' first meetings with the Penguins (Oct. 18), Devils (Nov. 1) and Rangers (Nov. 4).
As for exactly when these puck drops are scheduled, the Flyers will play at least 12 of their games in the afternoon. A time for one contest, a Feb. 17 date at Madison Square Garden with Rangers, has not yet been announced.
Speaking of the Blue Shirts, the Flyers will wrap up their 82-game regular season at home against the Rangers at 3 p.m. on Apr. 13.