Coyotes open season at home vs. Rangers on Oct. 3

GLENDALE, Ariz. – The Phoenix Coyotes will open the 2013-14 season at home on Thursday, Oct. 3, against the New York Rangers.

The season opener at Arena will be followed by the team’s longest road trip of the season — a five-game, nine-day swing that sends them to play against the San Jose, the New York Islanders, Detroit, Philadelphia and Carolina.

As part of the NHL’s Olympic break, the Coyotes will be off from Feb. 9-26.

The NHL’s scheduling format will see the Coyotes play five games each against Pacific Division rivals Anaheim, Calgary, Edmonton, Los Angeles and Vancouver. The Coyotes will also meet San Jose four times for a total of 29 contests within the newly aligned division. They will face the remaining seven Western Conference teams three times each and will play home and away games against each of the 16 Eastern Conference teams.

The scheduling format means that for the first time ever, the Coyotes will play every Original Six team at Arena: Boston (March 22), Chicago (Nov. 30 and Feb. 7), Detroit (Oct. 19), Montreal (March 6), New York Rangers (Oct. 3) and Toronto (Jan. 20).

Alexander Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals will visit Arena on Nov. 9, while Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and the Pittsburgh Penguins will play in Glendale on Feb. 1.

December sees the Coyotes on the road for nine games and at home for only four, but they follow that with 10 home games and five on the road in January.

The Coyotes’ longest homestand in 2013-14 is six games (Dec. 31 through Jan. 11) and will feature Edmonton (Dec. 31), Columbus (Jan. 2), Philadelphia (Jan. 4), Calgary (Jan. 7), Minnesota (Jan. 9) and Anaheim (Jan. 11). They also will have a five-game home stand from Jan. 28-Feb. 7.

The Coyotes will close out the regular season playing five of their last eight games at home, including the regular season finale against Dallas on Sunday, April 13.

The starting times will be 7 p.m. for weekday home games and 6 p.m. for weekend home games, with a pair of exceptions: 6 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 20, vs. Toronto, and 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 15, vs. Calgary.

The Coyotes play two of their seven preseason games at home: Sept. 15 vs. Los Angeles and Sept. 27 vs. San Jose.

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