The Washington Capitals are ready to hit the ice in October for the first time since 2019.
The NHL released its 2021-22 schedule on Thursday, which features a full 82-game schedule for all 32 teams. Each team will play 41 games at home and 41 on the road. Teams will not have to play within their division all season, as was the case through the 56-game campaign last season.
Washington begins its season on Oct. 13 when it hosts the New York Rangers at Capital One Arena. The Capitals will first face off against the rival Pittsburgh Penguins on Nov. 14. Washington will also see the Boston Bruins for the first time since Game 5 on Jan. 10 at home.
Their first major road trip will take place from Nov. 16-21 when they play the Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks before heading up the coast and facing off against the Seattle Kraken for the first time in franchise history. The Kraken will then head down to D.C. for another matchup with Washington on March 5.
There will be a 2022 NHL All-Star Weekend in Las Vegas, with NHL All-Star Skills taking place on Feb. 4 and the All-Star Game taking place on Feb. 5.
The NHL has agreed to add a break from Feb. 7-22 to accommodate potential NHL Player participation in the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games. However, no final agreement or decision has been made in regards to players participating in the Olympics, as that’s up t the NHL and NHLPA. If players do head to Beijing, the regular season will resume on Feb. 23.
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Washington’s longest time away from home will be in the home stretch of the regular season, from April 14-22. The Capitals will pay visits to the Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, Colorado Avalanche, Vegas Golden Knights and Arizona Coyotes before heading back to the District to play the Leafs on April 24.
Speaking of the Golden Knights, the Capitals get to see their Stanley Cup Final foes twice; once on Jan. 24 and again on April 22.
Washington will face the Rangers again to close out the regular season, but this time, it’ll be at Madison Square Garden on April 29.
Overall, it’s bound to be a thrilling season. Washington will have a lot to look forward to, from seeing Ilya Samsonov take over the reins in net to Alex Ovechkin returning (seriously guys, don’t panic) for yet another year. The full schedule can be found on the Capitals’ website.