The long-awaited 2008-2009 National Hockey League Schedule has arrived.
Contrary to last season, the Devils will open the season at home at the Prudential Center against the New York Islanders on October 10th before traveling to take on the defending Eastern Conference Champion Pittsburgh Penguins the next day.
The new scheduling matrix will see each team play six games against every team in their own division (24 games), four games against the non-division teams within its conference (40 games), plus 18 non-Conference games, including at least one game against each club in the other conference (15 games) and three home-and-home series against non-Conference teams.
The Devils will play two games against the Blackhawks, the Stars, and the Kings.
Skimming the final two months of the season, a noticeable difference from seasons past is the infrequency of divisional games in the final two months. Of the final 20 games in the regular season, only five will be against divisional opponents; March 1 and 23 vs. the Flyers, March 7 vs. the Islanders, March 30, vs. the Rangers and April 1 against the Pens.
Other games that stand out on the 82-game schedule are:
Mon. Oct. 13 @ Rangers (first game against the Blueshirts)
Wed. Oct. 22 vs. Stars (first meeting with Sean Avery's Stars)
Sat. Nov. 8 @ Red Wings (Cup Champions)
Thurs. Feb. 26 vs. Avalanche (2001 Cup Rematch)
Mon. Mar. 30 vs. Rangers (final regular season game against the Rangers)
Sat. Apr. 11 vs. Hurricanes (final regular season home game)
For those keeping score for the home games:
2 Monday night
5 Tuesday night
7 Wednesday night
4 Thursday night
10 Friday night
5 Saturday night
2 Saturday matinee
2 Sunday night
3 Sunday matinee
Can't wait for the pre-season to begin in September!
For the full 2008-2009 team schedule, check out newjerseydevils.com