BUFFALO (LGS) — The National Hockey League released their 2007-2008 regular season schedule Tuesday afternoon and we now know the Buffalo Sabres will start their 38th NHL campaign with a home-and-home series against the New York Islanders.
The Sabres will raise their 2006-2007 Presidents' Trophy and Northeast Division Championship banners on Friday, October 5th at 7:30pm against the Islanders. The two teams will then travel to Long Island for a Saturday night matchup starting at 7:00pm.
The variable pricing designations, as well as box office pricing for individual home games will be released at a later date. All Friday night home games will start at 7:30pm. All other home games will begin at 7:00pm, unless otherwise designated.
The highly-discussed outdoor game at Ralph Wilson Stadium has not yet been officially announced but various NHL sources believe the league will do whatever it takes to make that game a reality when the Pittsburgh Penguins come into town on New Year's Day for a 1:00pm faceoff.
HSBC Arena will be invaded by Leafs' Nation early this year as the Sabres' first matchup against the Leafs will be at home on Monday, October 15th. As usual, the Sabres will play their Northeast Division rivals eight times each (four home and four away). Buffalo will face their other Eastern Conference opponents from the Altantic and Southeast Divisions four times each (two home and two away).
This year the Sabres will host the Western Conference's Central Division meaning two Buffalo natives — St. Louis Blues' Lee Stempniak and Chicago Blackhawks' Patrick Kane — will make their first professional trips back home. The Sabres will visit the West Coast this season as Buffalo will be away at each of the Western Conference's Pacific Division teams.
Former co-captain Daniel Briere will make his first trip back to Buffalo when the Sabres host the Philadelphia Flyers on December 21st while Chris Drury and his New York Rangers will debut in Buffalo on February 23rd.
The Atlanta Thrashers and Philips Arena will host the 2008 NHL All-Star Weekend with the 56th NHL All-Star Game taking place on Sunday, January 27th.
The NHL's 90th anniversary season begins in London, England — the birthplace of Lord Stanley's Cup — with a two-game series between the reigning champion Anaheim Ducks and the Los Angeles Kings on September 29th and 30th.
The 2008 Stanley Cup playoffs will begin on Wednesday, April 9th and will conclude no later than Monday, June 9th.
National television broadcast schedules and full pre-season schedules will be released in the near future.
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