The American Hockey League released the full 2012-2013 schedule today so now it’s time to start planning some road trips and schedules around the upcoming season. The schedule still stinks and again there’s little variety, the Amerks play the same set of teams as last year. Someday the board of governors will recognize that fans want to see more of a variety to the schedule and see different teams. The biggest change is that Friday night home games have moved from a 7:35pm start to 7:05pm.
That start time seems to be the only lowlight of the schedule. The Amerks have played games on Friday nights at 7:35 for a very long time. Rob Kopaz told Kevin Oklobzija the following about the change:
1) Consistency to the schedule. Fans don’t need to try to remember if it’s 7:05 or 7:35.
2) It’s more family friendly. “If you want younger kids to come to games, starting earlier is better,” he said.
3) The team gets on the bus sooner and, thus, gets more rest before the Saturday road game. There will be 14 times the Amerks are home Friday and on the road Saturday (most are game-day bus trips to Syracuse, Hamilton, Toronto or Binghamton).
Read more at the link above. If it’s consistency they’re looking for they should have kept the 7:35 start time. It’s a start time that Amerks fans have always known of. A half hour isn’t that big of a deal whether it’s for a kid or a hockey team riding a bus. If you disagree with the start time make sure to let the team know. I’m not sure how a family where the parents work until 5pm will be able to eat dinner, pick up the kids and get to the arena for warmups. That’s a hustle!
Moving on from that here’s a break down the schedule by some numbers and a few highlights:
** Home Opener: Friday October 12th against the Syracuse Crunch. The Crunch have a new NHL affiliate this season, the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning prospects won the Calder Cup at the end of the 2011/2012 season playing for the Norfolk Admirals.
** Black Friday and Christmas games: These two games typically have the best attendance during the holiday season. November 23 vs Toronto and December 26th vs Lake Erie.
** Save some money from shopping during the holiday’s because the Amerks play four home games between Christmas and New Years day.
** New Years Eve Pregaming: An afternoon game on December 31st at 3:05pm looks to be a great way.
** The team will play six sets of three games in three nights, this is down from 10 during the 2011-2012 season. The last three weekends of the season in April will all be three game sets.
** The road game on February 22 against the Hamilton Bulldogs will be played in Montreal at the Bell Centre.
There’s only 14 different opponents out of 30 teams in the league and it’s the same opponents as last season:
- Hamilton (12 games)
- Toronto (10 games)
- Syracuse (10 games)
- Abbotsford (8 games)
- Binghamton (8 games)
- Lake Erie (6 games)
- Albany (4 games)
- Adirondack (4 games)
- WBS (2 games)
- Hershey (2 games)
- Grand Rapids (2 games)
- Houston (2 games)
- San Antonio (2 games)
- Texas (2 games)
- OKC (2 games)
Changes from last year:
- Abbotsford +4
- Hamilton +2
- Grand Rapids -4
- OKC -2
Games by day of the week:
- Sunday: 3 home, 5 away
- Monday: 2 home, 1 away
- Tuesday: 3 home, 3 away
- Wednesday: 6 home, 5 away
- Thursday: None home, 1 away
- Friday: 21 home, 4 away
- Saturday: 3 home, 19 away
- October: 8
- November: 10
- December: 13
- January: 9
- February: 12
- March: 15
- April: 9
For the complete schedule in pdf format click here: http://amerks.com/media/pdf/2012-13AmerksSchedule.pdf
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