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2012-13 regular season schedule

NHL's 99-day schedule starts with 13 games Jan. 19

Saturday, 01.12.2013 / 10:42 PM / 2012-13 regular season schedule

The sprint that will be the 2012-13 NHL regular season starts Jan. 19 as 26 of the League's 30 teams open their schedule. It ends 98 days later with a final-day slate of 13 games on April 27.

The 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs begin three days later.

But before that can happen, each team will play 48 games entirely against clubs within its own conference. There will be no interconference play until the Eastern and Western champions arrive at the Stanley Cup Final in June.

The 2012-13 schedule matrix will accentuate the most-heated rivalries in the game, especially with each team playing 18 of its games against division foes. Eight of those 18 games are against two of the teams in the division (four each; two home and two away); five games (three home and two away) are against one team from the division; and five games (two home and three away) are against the remaining divisional opponent.

Clubs will play three games against each of the 10 remaining non-divisional opponents from within the conference, playing half those clubs in a two-home, one-away series and the other half in a two-away, one-home set.

Things certainly start with a bang Jan. 19.

The defending champion Los Angeles Kings, who defeated the New Jersey Devils in a six-game Final last June, raise their banner before a matinee game (3 p.m. ET) against the Chicago Blackhawks that will be carried by NBC in the U.S. and CBC in Canada. Both networks will cover the pregame ceremony.

A riveting playoff rematch is the other matinee TV game that Saturday: The Pittsburgh Penguins visit the Philadelphia Flyers to renew acquaintances in the battle for Keystone State bragging rights. NBC will carry that game regionally after the Kings' banner raising.

West may find points harder to come by this season

Saturday, 01.12.2013 / 10:42 PM / 2012-13 regular season schedule

Dave Lozo - Staff Writer

The NHL's 48-game schedule for the 2012-13 season, which was released Saturday, is absent of interconference games.

Starting in 2005-06, teams played 72 of 82 games within their conference. In an effort to have every team play one team from the other conference, teams began playing 64 games within their conference starting in 2008-09. Lengthy trips to the other side of the country won't happen in 2013, so each conference's playoff teams will have to take care of their own business.

With that being the case, how would last year's postseason have looked with only the 64 intraconference games counting in the standings? Let's start with the Eastern Conference, where not much changed.

Quote of the Day

It's obviously not fun to not know, but on the other hand, I'm not in a rush. I'm going to be back to 100 percent before I start playing. I'm not going to play on 90 percent.

— Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom in an interview with Washington Post about whether he will be able to play in 2015-16 opener