Welcome to the opening day of the 2012-13 NHL season!
NHL.com will be with hockey fans all day, as the sprint to the 2013 NHL Playoffs begins with a flurry of games on the season's first day. There will be 26 teams in action, with contests starting at 3 p.m. ET and continuing into the early hours of Saturday morning.
The day starts with the defending champions, the Los Angeles Kings, celebrating the first title in team history, with a banner-raising ceremony before they kick off the Cup defense against the Chicago Blackhawks. At the same time on the other side of the country, bitter rivals Pittsburgh and Philadelphia will exchange pleasantries for the first time since the Flyers claimed a wild playoff series in April.
If those two contests at 3 p.m. ET aren't enough, MTS Centre will be rocking again as the Winnipeg Jets welcome the Ottawa Senators. Later highlights on the opening day schedule include the New York Rangers in Boston to face the Bruins (7 p.m. ET), the Toronto Maple Leafs in Montreal to face the Canadiens (7 p.m. ET) and the Detroit Red Wings will begin a season without Niklas Lidstrom for the first time in two decades when they travel to St. Louis to face the defending division champion Blues (8 p.m. ET).
The night concludes with the Anaheim Ducks in Vancouver to face the Canucks (10 p.m. ET), with the Cory Schneider Era set to begin with Roberto Luongo still on the roster and watching from the bench.
Check back frequently for more blog updates throughout the day, as our team of NHL.com writers and contributors will keep everyone abreast of lineup decisions, late-breaking news and other developments in and around NHL arenas as the League welcomes back everyone for the 2012-13 campaign.