The NHL announced it’s schedule for the pandemic-shortened 2021 season on Wednesday.
Rivalries will take center stage during the 2020-21 @NHL season, which begins Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) December 23, 2020
As previously announced, the Red Wings’ schedule is entirely made up of games against opponents from the temporary Central Division, including the Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators, and Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Red Wings will open their season with a four-game homestand, starting off with the Carolina Hurricanes on January 14.
In an effort to reduce travel, many matchups are scheduled in pairs. For example, Detroit’s opening homestand features two games against the Hurricanes followed by two games against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Detroit’s first road trip of the season includes two games in Chicago against the Blackhawks followed by two games in Dallas against the Stars.
The Red Wings are currently scheduled to close out the season with a pair of games in Columbus against the Blue Jackets on May 7 and 8.
That said, the league has been clear that it is possible games could be moved from their expected venues depending on COVID protocols. The San Jose Sharks, for example, are currently unable to play in Santa Clara County and, if that ban were to be extended, games scheduled to be hosted by the Sharks could be played elsewhere.
Remarkably, in a schedule featuring so many paired-up games, the Red Wings have only one home-and-home series, as Detroit hosts the Stars on April 19 and 20 before shifting to Dallas for games on April 22 and 24.
All game start times are still to be determined.