NHL schedule notes: League will release schedule 'immediately' after players ratify CBA

Bruce Bennett

Gary Bettman says the league will release new slate after the players ratify; Pens-Flyers to open the season on television; the Kings' banner raising will likely not be on national television

As we get closer and closer to the release of the NHL's 2013 schedule and television schedule, Puck the Media will intermittently post updates, scuttlebutt and other rumors on what it will entail.

• During a press conference announcing the ratification of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement at the Board of Governors meeting, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman revealed that the 2013 NHL schedule will be released "immediately" once the players ratify the CBA themselves. No further word given on a television schedule, but you have to imagine it will come soon after, since there are likely only to be seven days between the schedule release and the start of the season. The players' ratification of the CBA is expected to happen on Saturday.

• It isn't necessarily official, but the sports director of WPXI (NBC in Pittsburgh) is reporting that the Penguins will open the season on NBC. The long-standing rumor is that it will be against the Flyers. A fine choice, as Pens-Flyers games routinely have drawn the biggest audiences for the NHL since the lockout.

• The Los Angeles Kings will likely make their home opener (and 2012 Stanley Cup banner raising) a locals-only affair. Helene Elliott reported earlier today that the Kings will open on Jan. 19 against the Chicago Blackhawks, in a 7 p.m. ET start. The game will be televised locally on Fox Sports West, but unless NBC Sports Network makes some moves on its Jan. 19 schedule (they have a college basketball tripleheader from 3-9 p.m. ET) or the broadcast is picked up by NHL Network, it will go untelevised nationally. The banner raising of the Stanley Cup winner has typically been kept to the regional networks and/or NHL Network, but VERSUS made a big production out of the Bruins' celebration last year.

• Other than that game, what we know about the NHL's opening day/night is largely Canada centric, though more and more news continues to trickle in, aside from the aforementioned Pens-Flyers tilt. According to Elliotte Friedman of CBC, Hockey Night in Canada will have a tripleheader, featuring the Senators and Jets at 3 p.m. ET, the Maple Leafs and Canadiens at 7 p.m. ET and Flames and Oilers at 10 p.m. ET. Also, the Blues will take on the Red Wings and the Wild will host the Avalanche. Additionally, it appears the Blue Jackets will visit the Predators on opening night, and Anaheim is visiting Vancouver. Lastly, a big one, the Bruins will host the Rangers at TD Garden.

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