The Nashville Predators 17th season is creeping up on us. There are lots of dates that you need to put down on your calendar so you don’t miss out on what might be the most exciting Preds season to date. There are few significant rule changes—most notably the switch to 3-on-3 overtime, the expansion of video replay and introduction of the coach’s challenge, per NHL.com.
If you are like me I had to grab my “Social Director” and she had to get all of this in the works!
Thursday, Sept. 10th – Predators Rookie Camp Opens – This could be the best collection of players ever at the Preds Rookie Camp. F Kevin Fiala, highly regarded G Juuse Saros, 6 foot 5 D Jonathan-Ismael Diaby…the list goes on and on of interesting players that we may see this year or in the very near future. They will also play in a Rookie Tournament in Estero FL against the Washington Capitals, Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panters from Sept 12-15th.
Thursday, Sept. 17th – Predators Training Camp Opens – The veterans hit the ice in preparation for the season. As we reported in this article about who will make the third and fourth lines, there are a lot of players vying for just a few open spots on the team. They need to show their stuff right away. There are also several Preds with something to prove as we noted here.
Thursday, Sept. 20th -First Preseason Game- The Predators will host the Florida Panthers in the NHL’s first preseason game of the year. They will be the first of three games that day in the league. This will actually be a split squad doubleheader with the Panthers. They will also play Eastern Conference champ Tampa Bay and Columbus in home and homes to round out the preseason.
Thursday, Oct. 8th – Opening Night – The team opens their 82-game season at home against the Carolina Hurricanes, Coach Peter Laviolette’s former team. The teams split their two games last year.
Saturday, Oct. 10th – Connor McDavid and the Oilers – His only trip to Smashville this year. Presumably he won’t have the Calder Trophy wrapped up by then.
Thursday, Oct. 15th – Leagues Newest Stadium – On this night the Predators will play at the NHL’s newest stadium, the Barclays Center. The New York Islanders have moved about 30 miles west from Nassau Coliseum — where they’ve played since 1972 — to Brooklyn, New York. The Preds will be just the third team to play there.
Tuesday, Oct. 20th, Thursday, Oct 22nd, and Saturday, Oct. 24th – Big Week in Smashville – The only trip this year for both the Eastern Conference champion Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday and Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and newly acquired Phil Kessel and the Penguins on Saturday. Those games are sandwiched around a game on Thursday with the consensus Western Conference favorites, the Anaheim Ducks. Should be an exciting week!
Wednesday, Oct. 28th– First Game of the Season on NBCSN – We face the San Jose Sharks in the first of four games shown on the NBC Network. We only had one all of last year. The other three are against the Blues (12/29) and two against our favorite rival, the Chicago Blackhawks (1/19 & 2/25). This also starts a four game road trip out West during the CMA Awards in Nashville.
Tuesday, Dec. 8th and Thursday, Dec. 10th-Home and Home Against the Blackhawks – Tuesday in Chicago then back to Smashville on Thursday. This should be a good mid-season test to see where we stack up against the defending Stanley Cup Champs. The ‘Stone should be rocking on Thursday!
Saturday, Dec. 19th to Monday Dec. 28th-Interesting Home Stretch – Four games in a stretch where we actually play seven of eight at home that starts with that earlier Blackhawks game. This group of four includes two teams we aren’t real fond of: the Wild and the Redwings (circle that one) and the Canadiens and Rangers.
Friday, Jan 29th to Sunday, Jan. 31st – All-Star Weekend – We will light up the lights on Broadway and show the hockey world how to party in Smashville! There are plans for an outdoor skating rink, an NHL Fan Fair at the Music City Center and lots of indoor and outdoor concerts. The weekend also includes the NHL Fantasy Draft on Friday, the Skills Competion on Saturday and the big game on Sunday. It truly will be memorable.Gnash the Nashville Predators mascot. Mandatory Credit: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports
Tuesday, Feb 2nd to Saturday Feb. 20th – Long Homestand –Most of February is at home with two stretches of four and three home games around a quick two game road trip to Florida to face the Lightning and Panthers. It starts with an important game against the Blues and includes Barry Trotz’s return to Nashville with the Caps on Tuesday the 9th. All this before a three game Northern trip to Montreal, Toronto and the Blackhawks.
Saturday, Mar. 5th to Monday Mar. 14th – SEC Tournament – While the SEC is playing Basketball at the ‘Stone the Preds take a long trip that starts with the Avalanche (March 5), followed by visits to Winnipeg (March 8), Calgary (March 9), Vancouver (March 12) and Connor McDavid and Edmonton (March 14).
Saturday, Apr. 9th– Last Game of the REGULAR Season– We finish as Dallas after a three game homestand against Western teams, San Jose, Colorado and Arizona. Hopefully, we are just resting up in this final game as a tune up for a deep run in the playoffs!
What are you looking forward to this next season?
More from Predlines