While most of us are baking in the summer heat, how about a preview of what’s to come in the fall and winter?
The first hint of the 2022-23 American Hockey League schedule came out on Wednesday afternoon, as the league announced home opener dates for all 32 teams, including the Syracuse Crunch. Take it away, Daniel Walcott!
On Thursday, the full slate was released. For the first time since the Pacific Division joined the league in 2015-16, all teams will play an even number of games—72 to be exact—which means no more points percentage math!
Syracuse will open their 24th season—and 11th as the AHL affiliate of the Lightning—on the road on Friday, October 14th, as they visit division rival Cleveland for two games. After a stop in Rochester on the 21st, the Crunch will open their home schedule on Saturday, October 22nd, against the Amerks.
A few highlights on the calendar:
Friday/Saturday, October 14-15: Opening weekend on the road against Cleveland.
Saturday, October 22nd: First home contest against Rochester.
Wednesday, December 21st: First match-up against Laval since the Rocket eliminated the Crunch in the Calder Cup playoffs.
Wednesday, December 28th: First trip to Laval.
Friday, January 6th-Sunday, January 8th: The first of only four 3 in 3 weekends of the season. Syracuse will host Belleville on Friday and Rochester on Sunday, then head south to Hershey on Sunday afternoon.
Monday, January 16th: The lone Monday game on the agenda, as Syracuse hosts Utica in a special 1:00 PM matinee.
Sunday, March 26th: Syracuse has just one Sunday home game, a 5 PM start against Utica.
Friday, April 14th: Last road regular season game in Laval.
Saturday, April 15th: Syracuse will close out the regular season at home against Utica.
We’re ready to Crunch the competition. pic.twitter.com/YiFol7813d— Syracuse Crunch (@SyracuseCrunch) July 21, 2022
Syracuse will face off against a total of 14 opponents during the regular season, all in the Eastern Conference. Naturally, their most frequent foes are Utica (14 games) and Rochester (12 games), followed by Laval (8), Belleville (6), and Toronto (6). The Crunch have four games apiece against Cleveland, Charlotte, Providence, and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. To round out the list, Syracuse plays two each against Springfield, Bridgeport, Hershey, Lehigh Valley, and Hartford.
Have Weekend Plans?
Syracuse’s schedule is very weekend-heavy, with 25 Friday games and 24 Saturday games. They play on Sunday just 7 times, 6 of those on the road. The Crunch will also play on Wednesday 15 times.
Short Business Trips
One note that stands out with this schedule is the lack of an extended road trip. The longest stretch the team is away from the War Memorial is 3 games, which happens on 7 different occasions. Syracuse’s longest homestand is 5 games, from December 9th-21st.
You can find the full Crunch schedule here.