SUNRISE, Fla. - The Florida Panthers, in conjunction with the National Hockey League, have announced their schedule for the 2017-18 regular season.
The Panthers open the 2017-18 regular season with a home-and-home series against their intrastate rival the Tampa Bay Lightning. The all-Florida home-and-home series kicks off in Tampa Bay on Friday, Oct 6 at 7:30 pm, before the Panthers return for their home opener against the Lightning at BB&T Center on Saturday, Oct 7 at 7 p.m.
The Panthers will play a total of 82 regular season games (41 home and 41 away), as well as six preseason games (two home and four away). The schedule is highlighted by 13 Saturday home games and two home matchups against the Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday, Oct. 20 and Saturday, Feb. 24.
The Panthers season finale is set for Saturday, April 7 against the Buffalo Sabres.
Florida plays 28 games within the Atlantic Division this season with four games (two home and two away) against the Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, Ottawa Senators, Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs. The Panthers will play 24 games against teams from the Metropolitan Division and 30 games (one home and one away) against the Western Conference.
Florida will play 11 games this season at the BB&T Center against 'Original Six' teams. The Panthers will host Boston twice (March 15, April 5), the Chicago Blackhawks once (Nov. 25), Detroit twice (Oct. 28, Feb. 3), Montreal twice (Dec. 30, March 8), the New York Rangers twice (Nov. 4, March 10) and Toronto twice (Nov. 22, Feb. 27).
SUNSHINE STATE SHOWDOWN
Opening the season with a home-and-home against their intrastate rivals in Tampa Bay (Oct. 6, Oct. 7), the Panthers will again host the Lightning on Oct. 30, marking the two Sunshine State squads' third game in the opening month of the season. The Panthers and Lightning close out their season series on March 6 at Amalie Arena.
The Cats will host a season-high 13 home games on Saturday this season, one on Sunday, four on Monday, four on Tuesday, one on Wednesday, 11 on Thursday and seven on Friday
HOME COOKIN'/ROAD TRIPPIN'
Florida's longest home stand this season will be six games from Feb. 22 - March 4, when the Panthers will host the Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins, Toronto Maple Leafs, New Jersey Devils, Buffalo Sabres and Philadelphia Flyers. The Panthers will have three five-game road trips this season, marking their longest stretches away from home.
The Panthers welcome the Vegas Golden Knights to Florida on Friday, Jan. 19 hosting them for the very first time at BB&T Center. The Panthers face the Golden Knights for their inaugural meeting on Sunday, Dec. 17 at T-Mobile Arena.
HOCKEY FOR THE HOLIDAYS
The Panthers are home for a pair of games during Thanksgiving week, hosting Toronto (Nov. 22) and Chicago (Nov. 25). Additionally, the Cats will end 2017 with a four-game holiday homestand against the Minnesota Wild (Dec. 22), Ottawa (Dec. 23), Philadelphia (Dec. 28) and Montreal (Dec. 30).
THE NEXT ONE
20-year old phenom Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers make their only regular season visit to South Florida on Saturday, March 17 at 2 P.M.
In the month of March, the Panthers will play a season-high 17 games with 10 games against Atlantic Division opponents, five against Metropolitan Division opponents and two against Western Conference opponents.
START TIMES & MATINEE MATCH-UPS
All Panthers weekday home games will begin at 7:30 p.m., with the exception of Nov. 22 vs. Toronto beginning at 7 P.M. All Panthers weekend home games will begin at 7 P.M., with the exception of two weekend matinee games, Sunday, March 4 vs. Philadelphia (3 P.M.) and March 17 vs. Edmonton (2 P.M.)
Fans can download and sync their schedule for Outlook, Ical and more at FloridaPanthers.com/downloadchedule.
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