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Breaking Down the 2016-17 Schedule

by Michael Smith / Carolina Hurricanes
Is it October yet? The Carolina Hurricanes’ 2016-17 regular-season schedule was released today, and the team’s 82-game campaign begins on Thursday, Oct. 13 in Winnipeg, a full two weeks prior to the team’s hope opener on Friday, Oct. 28 against the Rangers.

There is still plenty that will take place between now and then, including the 2016 NHL Draft, the opening of free agency, Summerfest, training camp, the World Cup of Hockey and more, but it’s never too early to start planning. Schedule download links, including digital syncing options and hard-copy, printable versions, are available below.

Now, here is a breakdown of some of the highlights from the Canes’ 2016-17 schedule.

On the Road Again

The World Cup of Hockey is pushing back the start of the regular season and the State Fair rolls into town for an Oct. 13 opening, so the Hurricanes will begin the season on a prolonged road trip that will take them across Western Canada and back East into the United States. The trip will span six games over 13 days, some 6,000-plus miles traveled. To help manage the time away from home, the Hurricanes could sneak back to Raleigh for a couple of nights after playing in Philadelphia on Saturday, Oct. 22 before jet-setting to Detroit to wrap up their road swing on Tuesday, Oct. 25.

While on the road, the Hurricanes will mark a pair of building-related milestones. Oct. 18 will be the team's first (and only of this season) visit to the brand-new Rogers Place in downtown Edmonton. Oct. 25 will be the team's last visit to the 38-year-old Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.


2016-17 SCHEDULE
2016-17 Schedule

More than two weeks after the season begins, the Hurricanes will finally return to PNC Arena for the league’s latest home opener in the upcoming season: Friday, Oct. 28, a 7:30 p.m. puck drop that brings to town the New York Rangers.

A home-opening weekend of sorts continues on Sunday evening, when the Hurricanes host the Philadelphia Flyers at 5 p.m.

Canadian Thanksgiving

Canadian Thanksgiving will take place on Monday, Oct. 10, but the Hurricanes will have a literal Canadian Thanksgiving, as they make a three-game trek through the Great White North during the week of the traditional American holiday.

The trip begins Tuesday, Nov. 22 in Toronto and wraps up on Saturday, Nov. 26 in Ottawa. The Hurricanes will take on the Montreal Canadiens in a Thanksgiving night match-up on Thursday, Nov. 24.

Ringing in the New Year

The Hurricanes will close out 2016 with a back-to-back set on the last two days of the calendar year. The Chicago Blackhawks make their lone visit to Raleigh on Friday, Dec. 30 before the Hurricanes celebrate New Year’s Eve with a 7:00 puck drop in Tampa Bay the following night.

Bye, Bye, Bye

New this year is a five-day “bye week” for each team, which is a consecutive five-day set of off days (including no practice) that falls at some point between Jan. 1 and Feb. 28. The Hurricanes’ bye week begins Sunday, Feb. 12 and continues through Thursday, Feb. 16.

Following the reprieve, the Hurricanes begin one of their two season-long, five-game homestands by hosting Colorado on Friday, Feb. 17.

Hey Now, You’re An All-Star

Considering both the truncated nature of the schedule and the five-day bye week, this season’s All-Star Break is much more abbreviated. All-Star Weekend heads to Hollywood for the annual Skills Competition and All-Star event on Saturday, Jan. 28 and Sunday, Jan. 29, respectively. The Hurricanes have two home games surrounding the weekend: Thursday, Jan. 26 vs. Los Angeles and Tuesday, Jan. 31 vs. Philadelphia.

Friday Night Lights

The Hurricanes will play 11 Friday home games this season and all but one will face off at 7:30 p.m.

The 30-minutes-later-than-usual start times will allow fans some extra time on the last days of the traditional workweek to make their way out to the rink. And some marquee opponents will be coming through town then, too: New York Rangers, Washington, Boston, Chicago and Pittsburgh, among others.

Facing the Champs, Divisional Play & Back-to-Backs

The Metropolitan Division was a force in 2015-16. It produced five playoff teams, the Presidents’ Trophy winner and the Stanley Cup Champions. Speaking of the champs, the Hurricanes will first match up with the Penguins on Dec. 28 in Pittsburgh. The Penguins will make two visits to Raleigh in the back half of the season: Friday, Jan. 20 and Tuesday, Feb. 21.

Within the Metropolitan Division, the Canes will play five games this season against the New York Islanders – three at home and two on the road – and the Philadelphia Flyers – two at home and three on the road.

For the third season in a row, the Hurricanes will play 16 sets of back-to-back games in 2016-17. One of the sets is a home-and-home series: March 13-14 against the New York Islanders. Two of the sets will not involve travel for the Hurricanes: Dec. 16 vs. Washington and Dec. 17 vs. Buffalo, and Jan. 13 vs. Buffalo and Jan. 14 vs. New York Islanders.


As is typically the case, November, December and March carry the heavy loads of the schedule. March is particularly jam-packed with 16 games – eight at home and eight on the road – in a span of 30 days. January is a home-heavy month, with the Hurricanes playing eight of their 13 games at PNC Arena.

Month Home Road Total
October 2 6 8
November 7 7 14
December 7 8 15
January 8 5 13
February 6 4 10
March 8 8 16
April 3 3 6

Plan to spend your weekends with the Hurricanes as more than half of the team’s 41 home games (26) will be played on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. In fact, the weekend houses just over half of the Canes’ 82-game schedule (42).

Saturday is the busiest day of the weekend and features 17 games: seven at home and 10 on the road. Aside from Christmas Eve (all teams are off Dec. 24-26), the Hurricanes will play on each Saturday night in December, a stretch that includes one home game (Dec. 17 vs. Buffalo) and a New Year’s Eve tilt in Tampa Bay.

Tuesday is the busiest day of the entire week, as it features 20 games: eight at home and 12 on the road. The Hurricanes will twice play on seven consecutive Tuesdays: from Oct. 18-Nov. 29 and from Feb. 21-April 4.

The Canes will play just one Monday home game and have zero Wednesday home games.

Day Home Road Total
Monday 1 2 3
Tuesday 8 12 20
Wednesday 0 3 3
Thursday 6 8 14
Friday 11 1 12
Saturday 7 10 17
Sunday 8 5 13

Michael Smith
MICHAEL SMITH is the Web Producer for the Carolina Hurricanes.

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