The National Hockey League’s labor situation may cause the partial or complete cancellation of the 2004-05 season but if it is played, the schedule of games is set. The league announced its schedule for the upcoming season on Wednesday, following a tradition of making the announcement the day after Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game.
The Red Wings will open their season in Edmonton on October 14 on an abbreviated road trip through Western Canada. The Wings will then face Vancouver before heading back to Detroit to host the Carolina Hurricanes in their home opener on October 20.
The Red Wings’ schedule includes only one home-and-home series, a season-ending affair against the Minnesota Wild on April 8 and April 10. Detroit will play 24 of their 82 games on consecutive nights.
Detroit’s first matchup of the season with the archrival Colorado Avalanche is in Denver on December 8. The Avalanche make their first trip of the season to Detroit on January 29.
The Red Wings will face the Calgary Flames for the first time since losing to them in six games in the second round of the 2004 playoffs on November 24 in Detroit. The Wings will visit the Flames for the first time on December 11.
The annual New Year’s Eve game will feature the Red Wings hosting the Vancouver Canucks. Gametime is at 7:00 PM, unlike most Detroit home games which start at 7:30 PM. The Red Wings will have played at home on December 31 all but six years since 1950.
Detroit’s preseason exhibition schedule was also released in the past week. The Red Wings will face only five teams in nine games.