The NHL on Wednesday released its 2022-23 regular season schedule of 1,312 games.
With the 2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft taking place Thursday and Friday and the free agency contract term beginning July 13, there are already plenty of games to look forward to.
[PDF: 2022-23 NHL regular season schedule by Club]
Here’s a look at some must-see games in 2022-23:
7th-8th October: San Jose Sharks vs. Nashville Predators (NHL Global Series 2022)
For the first time since 2019, the NHL will host games in Europe when the Sharks and Predators play two games at the O2 Arena in Prague, Czech Republic (each at 2:00 p.m. ET) to open the season. It will be a homecoming for the San Jose forward Thomas Hertl, who was born in Prague, and defender Radek Simek, who hails from Mlada Boleslav. San Jose played two regular season games in Stockholm in the 2010 NHL Premiere Series; Nashville is playing in Europe for the first time.
Oct. 12: Chicago Blackhawks at Colorado Avalanche (Avalanche home opener)
The Avalanche couldn’t celebrate on home ice, winning the Stanley Cup in Tampa Bay, but the Ball Arena should rock when Colorado takes on Chicago and raises its championship banner on the rafters (9:30 p.m.). The Avalanche won all three games against their Central Division rivals last season and have won nine of their last 11 against them.
4th-5th Nov.: Columbus Blues Jackets vs. Colorado Avalanche (NHL Global Series 2022)
Blue jackets forward patrick laine, who is a limited free agent, hails from Tampere, Finland, where games are played at Nokia Arena (every 1pm ET). He scored four goals in two games there in 2018 as a member of the Winnipeg Jets against the Florida Panthers. The Avalanche will also be represented by forwards Mikko Rantanen (Nousiainen) and restricted free agent Arturi Lehkonen (Piikkio) from the homeland.
Nov. 25: Pittsburgh Penguins at the Philadelphia Flyers; St. Louis Blues at Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL Thanksgiving Showdown 2022)
Led by the middle Sydney Crosby, the Penguins will renew their rivalry with the Flyers at Wells Fargo Arena in Philadelphia (5:00 p.m. ET) in the first game of a doubleheader on TNT. In game two, the Tampa Bay Lightning hosts the St. Louis Blues at Tampa’s Amalie Arena (7:30 p.m. ET) in a matchup between two teams who have combined three championship wins in the past four seasons.
Dec 5: Vegas Golden Knights at Boston Bruins (Bruce Cassidy returns to Boston)
Cassidy led the Bruins to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in each of his six seasons, including the 2019 Stanley Cup Finals, before being released as coach on June 6. Eight days later, he was hired to coach the Golden Knights and likely circled that game on his calendar as well (7:00pm ET).
Dec 6: Florida Panthers at Winnipeg Jets (Paul Maurice returns to Winnipeg)
Maurice spent nine seasons as Jets coach before retiring on December 17, 2021 with the most wins (315) in Jets/Atlanta Thrashers history. He helped Winnipeg into the postseason five times, including the Western Conference Finals in 2018. Maurice was hired as Panthers coach on June 22.
Dec 8 Nashville Predators at Tampa Bay Lightning (Ryan McDonagh returns to Tampa Bay)
It’s going to be an emotional night when McDonagh returns to Tampa’s Amalie Arena (7:00 p.m. ET). The two-time Stanley Cup winner was traded to the Predators on July 3 after five seasons with the Lightning. McDonagh helped the Lightning win the 2020 and 2021 cup and reach the finals that season and was one of the most respected players on the team.
Jan. 2: Pittsburgh Penguins at Boston Bruins (2023 Discover NHL Winter Classic)
The Bruins will play the Winter Classic for the first time since 2019 and will host it at Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox, for the first time since 2010 (2 p.m. ET). On the other side of the ice are their Metropolitan Division rivals Sidney Crosby and the Penguins, who haven’t played the game since 2011, when they hosted it at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. Boston is 2-1 in the Winter Classic; Pittsburgh is 1-1.
February 9: Colorado Avalanche at Tampa Bay Lightning (Stanley Cup Finals rematch)
The teams will meet at Tampa Bay’s Amalie Arena (7 p.m. ET) for the first time since June 26, when Colorado lifted the trophy with a 2-1 win in Game 6 of the Finals. Although the rosters will vary, the game should have plenty of star power Steven Stamko, Victor Hedman and Andrei Vasilyevsky pioneering the flash, and Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog and Kal Makar for the avalanche. They will also play at Ball Arena in Denver five days later.
February 18: Washington Capitals at Carolina Hurricanes (2023 Navy Federal Credit Union NHL Stadium Series)
The Hurricanes will play their first outdoor game, hosting the Capitals at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, NC on the North Carolina State University campus (8:00 p.m. ET). The Capitals are 3-0 in outdoor games after last playing in a 2018 NHL Stadium Series. The game was originally scheduled for 2021 but was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.