Chirps from Center Ice

A fan blog about the AHL's Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins

2018-19 AHL Schedule Released

I guess we can start marking off July 11 as the date that the American Hockey League debuts it’s playing schedule for the coming year. A year to the day, they announced the 2017-18 schedule. Today, on July 11, they did the same.

We already know who the Penguins will open with, that news was announced yesterday (Springfield on Saturday, October 6) so it’s time to look at the other 75 games that make up the 76 game regular season schedule that the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins will be playing.

League release here, Penguins release here.

I always do a question and answer session with the schedule since I think it’s the best way to look at it despite the fact that it is the same thing over and over again. So here goes:

1) Alright, so I know when the home opener is and against who, and we already know who the Penguins play and how many times, but refresh my memory again anyway please.

No problem. Here it is again for you.

Opponent Home Road   Opponent Home Road
Binghamton 2 2 Milwaukee 1 1
Bridgeport 4 4 Providence 3 3
Charlotte 2 2 Rochester 1 1
Cleveland 2 2 Rockford 1 1
Grand Rapids 1 1 Springfield 3 3
Hartford 3 3 Syracuse 1 1
Hershey 6 6 Toronto 1 1
Lehigh Valley 6 6 Utica 1 1

As pointed out by John on Twitter, the Penguins do not play the Belleville Senators or the Laval Rocket this season. I didn’t pick up on that when the matrix was announced earlier this year.

2) Cleveland! They are new! When do we play the Monsters?

Four times as the above chart indicates. First match up is right out of the gate in Cleveland immediately following the home opener with Springfield on Thursday, October 11 and Saturday, October 13. The Monsters visit the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza on Friday, December 7 and again on Friday, February 1.

3) Grand Rapids, Milwaukee and Rockford are back for another year. When do we play these Western Conference teams?

Road trip to the Midwest begins with Rockford on February 6, Milwaukee on February 8 and then a stop off in Grand Rapids on February 9.

Grand Rapids is the first to stop into Wilkes-Barre for a Friday, January 4 game followed by Milwaukee the next night on January 5 and then Rockford is in on Sunday, February 24.

4) Longest road trip? Longest home stand?

Longest road trip is five games in a row in November, starting Sunday November 4 in Bridgeport, a three in three to Providence, Hartford then back to Providence the following weekend then a Wednesday game in Springfield on November 14.

Longest home stand is no longer than three games, which are scattered throughout the schedule.

5) How many three in threes?

6) We know how much you love Sunday home games (/sarcasm<font/off>) so how many times do we have to hear you complain about your Sunday afternoons being interrupted by traveling to the Mohegan Sun Arena?

Haha, funny. There are five Sunday home dates scattered throughout the season.

7) We want more charts…

Good, cause I have them, courtesy of the Penguins release. See below.

GAMES BY DAY OF THE WEEK   GAMES BY MONTH
Home Road Total   Home Road Total
Monday 1 1 2 October 4 4 8
Tuesday 0 2 2 November 6 8 14
Wednesday 5 7 12 December 6 8 14
Thursday 0 1 1 January 5 4 9
Friday 12 9 21 February 5 5 10
Saturday 15 12 27 March 9 5 14
Sunday 5 6 11 April 3 4 7

8) Are the Penguins playing any workday afternoon games?

These are known as kids games because they normally involve droves of school buses bringing school kids to a game to scream when the video board says to. For the longest time, the Penguins haven’t played in any school day games.

Well this year, they play in a sum total of three, all on the road. The first is a November 14 game in Springfield which concludes the five game road trip. That game starts at 10:35 in the morning. They play two more in Bridgeport; 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, January 23 and again on Tuesday, April 2 at 10:30 a.m. also.

The Penguins host the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in a 1:05 p.m. game on Monday, January 21 on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

9) All-Star Game this year is where again?

It’s in Springfield, Massachusetts this year and it’s going to be played on January 27 for the Skills Competition and January 28 for the All-Star Classic.

10) What’s the theme the Penguins are going with this year?

Well, it’s their 20th Season in the AHL. They have a logo for the occasion you may have seen. They didn’t really have a theme last year, so maybe they are doing away with them altogether because I didn’t see anything listed for this year either.

11) Are the Penguins playing in any special venues this year?

No.

12) Anything else I need to know?

The Penguins play their 1,500th regular season game on Saturday, October 27 in Hershey. Why in Hershey and not at home to commemorate the milestone baffles me, but that’s the brakes.

Charlotte trip is January 11 and 12th, a Friday / Saturday stop into the Queen City.

The defending Calder Cup Champion Toronto Marlies drop in for their only visit on St. Patrick’s Day which falls on a Sunday this season.

Syracuse makes their only stop by on Saturday March 9. Utica drops by on February 16. Rochester is in on January 18.

The Penguins are the home opponent for the Binghamton Devils on New Years Eve, with a 6:05 p.m. start time.

There are six days this season on which 30 of the league’s 31 teams are in action: Sat., Oct. 13; Sat., Dec. 8; Fri., Dec. 21; Sat., Dec. 22; Sat., Jan. 19; and Sat., Mar. 30. The Penguins play on all of those dates.

Two Friday’s off in October, none in November, one in December, January and February, two in March and none in April.

The Penguins get one Saturday off this season, February 23.

One weird quirk which was pointed out to me was the Saturday, December 8 home game with Bridgeport that starts at 3:05. Penguins are on the road in Hershey Sunday afternoon, but that game starts at 5:05 – and Bridgeport doesn’t play again until December 14. Penn State Football is long done at that time, so if you want to speculate as to what it could be that is accounting for the strange start, please let me know in the comments.

You can sync the entire Penguins schedule to your phone or other device by clicking here and selecting the platform which applies to you.

So there you have it. Now go back to summer and enjoy it, because it will be over before you know it.

Chirp here...

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