RALEIGH, NC— The National Hockey League today released the 2008-09 regular-season schedules for its 30 member clubs. The Carolina Hurricanes’ 82-game regular-season campaign begins on Friday, Oct. 10, at the RBC Center against Southeast Division rivals, the Florida Panthers. Following an Oct. 11 game at Tampa Bay, the Hurricanes will return to Raleigh on Oct. 13 to host the 2008 Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings before embarking on a season-long, six-game road swing.
The Hurricanes begin the season’s second month with a 3 p.m. matinee against their 2006 Stanley Cup Final opponent, the Edmonton Oilers at the RBC Center on Saturday, Nov. 1. The Toronto Maple Leafs visit Raleigh the following day for the first of five Sunday home games in November for Carolina. Wednesday, Nov. 12, will mark the first of three 2008-09 visits to Raleigh for last season’s Hart Trophy-winner Alex Ovechkin, and the 2007-08 Southeast Division champion Washington Capitals.
The team’s December schedule begins on Thursday, Dec. 4, as Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and the Pittsburgh Penguins pay their first of two visits to the RBC Center. The Hurricanes’ seven December home games include match-ups against Philadelphia, Montreal and Boston, and will conclude with the team’s traditional New Year’s Eve game, this season against division rival Atlanta.
As the calendar flips to January, the Hurricanes will face their eighth of 14 back-to-back sets with a Jan. 2 home game against St. Louis and a Jan. 3 road game at Tampa Bay. Carolina will then play home games against New Jersey on Jan. 6 and Toronto on Jan. 15 before a three-game road trip leads the team into the All-Star break.
February begins with Carolina visiting Western Conference foes Vancouver, San Jose and Phoenix, before beginning its six-game home schedule for the month. The Columbus Blue Jackets and Colorado Avalanche are among February’s RBC Center visitors, as are the Buffalo Sabres, who pay their first 2008-09 visit to Raleigh on Thursday, Feb. 26.
The Hurricanes will play five of their first seven games in March on the road before beginning an 11-game end-of-season stretch run that includes eight home games. The New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, Washington Capitals, Ottawa Senators, New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins will visit the RBC Center between March 18 and April 7, before the Buffalo Sabres arrive for Carolina’s final regular-season home game on Thursday, April 9. The Hurricanes will finish the season with a 1 p.m. matinee on Saturday, April 11 at New Jersey.
The Hurricanes’ 2008-09 schedule is attached to this release. For the complete 2008-09 NHL schedule, and for individual teams’ schedules in varying formats, please visit http://media.nhl.com. Any media not currently registered for http://media.nhl.com are encouraged to register to receive the latest news from the NHL.