Tuesday, September 21, 2010

2010 NHL Preseason Schedule Heads Overseas

Tonight the puck drops on the NHL's 107 game preseason schedule. In addition to the handful of home games that season's ticketholders love paying for, 18 clubs will skate in 14 non-NHL cities in 9 countries matching up with 7 non-NHL teams en route. Here's a closer look at these out-of-town pairings and places.

Date: Teams --'-------- City
9/22: CHI v. TBL --'''''-- Winnipeg, MB
9/23: PHI v. TOR --''''-- London, ON
9/23: BOS v. FLA ---''''- Rochester, NY
9/28: BUF v. OTT --'''-'- Dundas, ON
9/29: CGY v. NYI --'''''''- Saskatoon, SK
10/2: MTL v. NYI --''''''- Quebec City, QC
10/2: COL v. LAK ---''''- Las Vegas, NV
10/2: SJS v. Adler ---''''- Mannheim, GER
10/2: BOS v. Belfast ---- Belfast, IRL
10/4: CAR v. St. Pete --- St. Petersburg, RUS
10/4: MIN v. Tampere -' Tampere, FIN
10/5: CLB v. Malmo --''- Malmo, SWE
10/5: BOS v. Liberec '--- Liberec, CZE
10/5: PHO v. Riga -''''''-- Riga, LAT

London, Saskatoon, and Las Vegas enjoy a repeat of last year's preseason matchups, with the Lightning and Islanders returning to Quebec City and Winnipeg, respectively. No coincident that the financially troubled twosome are back in leading markets for league expansion and relocation.

Interestingly, the team most likely to move is staying put in Phoenix for the preseason. Perhaps a trip north for the Coyotes might be a bit much for local fans to handle. Sadly, Hamilton was again omitted from the exhibition offering. One can't help but wonder if Bettman has forever banned NHL hockey from this town owing to Balsillie's aggressive bid.

The preseason schedule lasts for 14 days. The games start counting on October 7th when regular season play begins. Game on!