The Washington Capitals have released their schedule for the upcoming 2013 season which will begin on January 19th. After waiting months for the season to start, Caps fans can finally start thinking about the action on the ice.
Due to the NHL lockout, the season has been reduced to 48 games, with no cross-conference matchups. All games for the Capitals will be played against conference opponents with 18 coming against division foes.
Washington travels to Tampa Bay on Saturday, January 19 to kick off the season with a battle against the Southeastern Division-rival Lightning at 7 p.m. ET.
Tuesday, January 22 marks the first time that the raucous Verizon Center crowd will get to cheer on the home team when the Capitals host the Winnipeg Jets at 7 p.m. ET.
If the team has any rust due to the layoff, it will have to work it out quickly. The first week is packed with four games, including a trip to visit the defending Eastern Conference champs, the New Jersey Devils on January 25.
Due to the condensed schedule, the Capitals will have eight different times where back-to-back games occur. Four of those will happen in the month of March.
Fans won't have to wait long to see their beloved Caps take on hated rivals Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. The Flyers visit DC on Friday, February 1st and the Penguins come in for a Super Bowl Sunday tilt on February 3.
Washington will see both teams three times during the year.
Five games are slated to be shown to a national television audience by the NHL Network. Washington will appear twice as part of NBC's NHL Game of the Week against Pittsburgh on February 3 and the New York Rangers on March 10.