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Schedule Is Released: Hello Winnipeg!

Winnipeg The NHL released the 2011-12 schedule on Thursday.

Looks like a ton of fun for your Florida Panthers.

The Panthers open the season Oct. 8 against the Islanders with the home opener coming on Oct. 15 against the Lightning. Four of Florida's first five games are on the road.

Other highlights: 

-- Even though Michael Yormark promised angry season ticket holders that the Canadiens would not be the New Year's Eve opponent, they are.

The Rangers are here on Dec. 30 with Montreal in Sunrise the following night to complete a very difficult double-dip. But that should be back-to-back sellouts. And that's nice.

-- The Winnipeg/Manitoba/Atlanta Moose/Thrashers/Vikings make their first visit to Sunrise on Halloween. Florida visits the Frozen Tundra for the first time since the 90s on Nov. 10. The Panthers play at Toronto on Nov. 8.

-- The Blackhawks are here Nov. 3; Florida visits Chicago on Jan. 20 (and then back to Winnipeg on Jan. 21!)

-- The Thanksgiving Series: New Jersey (Monday), Rangers (Wednesday) and Lightning (Friday).

-- How's this for a road trip: Florida visits Tampa on Nov. 26, then goes to Carolina, Los Angeles and San Jose.

-- Nathan Horton and his Stanley Cup champion Bruins visit Sunrise for the first time on Jan. 16.

-- Here's the entire schedule:

SCHEDULE FOR Florida

Oct. 8 at N.Y. Islanders, 8:00 p.m.

Oct. 11 at Pittsburgh, 7:00 p.m.

Oct. 15 Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 17 at Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 18 at Washington, 7:00 p.m.

Oct. 20 Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 22 N.Y. Islanders, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 24 at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 27 at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 29 at Buffalo, 7:00 p.m.

Oct. 31 Winnipeg, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 3 Chicago, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 6 Tampa Bay, 5:00 p.m.

Nov. 8 at Toronto, 7:00 p.m.

Nov. 10 at Winnipeg, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 13 Philadelphia, 5:00 p.m.

Nov. 15 at Dallas, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 17 at St. Louis, 7:00 p.m.

Nov. 19 Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 21 New Jersey, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 23 N.Y. Rangers, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 25 Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 26 at Tampa Bay, 7:00 p.m.

Nov. 29 at Carolina, 7:00 p.m.

Dec. 1 at Los Angeles, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 3 at San Jose, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 5 Washington, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 8 at Boston, 7:00 p.m.

Dec. 9 at Buffalo, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 11 at N.Y. Rangers, 7:00 p.m

.Dec. 13 New Jersey, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 16 Calgary, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 18 Carolina, 5:00 p.m.

Dec. 20 Phoenix, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 22 at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 23 at Boston, 7:00 p.m.

Dec. 27 Toronto, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 30 N.Y. Rangers, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 31 Montreal, 6:00 p.m.

Jan. 5 at N.Y. Rangers, 7:00 p.m.

Jan. 6 at New Jersey, 7:00 p.m.

Jan. 9 Vancouver, 7:30 p.m.J

an. 13 Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.

Jan. 16 Boston, 7:30 p.m.

Jan. 18 at Colorado, 7:00 p.m.

Jan. 20 at Chicago, 7:30 p.m.

Jan. 21 at Winnipeg, 7:00 p.m.

Jan. 24 Philadelphia, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 1 Washington, 8:00 p.m.

Feb. 3 Winnipeg, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 4 at Tampa Bay, 7:00 p.m.

Feb. 7 at Washington, 7:00 p.m.

Feb. 9 Los Angeles, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 11 at New Jersey, 1:00 p.m.

Feb. 12 at N.Y. Islanders, 3:00 p.m.

Feb. 15 Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 17 Washington, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 19 Anaheim, 6:00 p.m.

Feb. 23 Minnesota, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 25 at Carolina, 7:00 p.m.

Feb. 26 Montreal, 5:00 p.m.

Feb. 28 at Toronto, 7:00 p.m.

Mar. 1 at Winnipeg, 7:30 p.m.

Mar. 3 Nashville, 7:30 p.m.

Mar. 4 Ottawa, 6:00 p.m.

Mar. 8 at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m

.Mar. 9 at Pittsburgh, 7:00 p.m.

Mar. 11 Carolina, 5:00 p.m.

Mar. 13 Toronto, 7:30 p.m.

Mar. 15 Boston, 7:30 p.m.

Mar. 17 Buffalo, 7:30 p.m

Mar. 20 at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m.

Mar. 21 at Carolina, 7:00 p.m.

Mar. 23 Edmonton, 7:30 p.m.

Mar. 25 N.Y. Islanders, 5:00 p.m.

Mar. 27 at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.

Mar. 29 at Minnesota, 7:00 p.m.

Mar. 30 at Columbus, 7:00 p.m.

Apr. 1 at Detroit, 4:00 p.m.

Apr. 3 Winnipeg, 7:30 p.m.

Apr. 5 at Washington, 7:00 p.m.

Apr. 7 Carolina, 7:30 p.m.

Comments

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Yormark lied to STH's again? Is anyone really suprised

Ugh. It's June and Yormark is at it already!

Love the Canadiens on New Year's Eve every year! Even as a Panthers die-hard, those games are my favorite of the season. Great crowd, holiday atmosphere. Who cares if the Canadiens have won two years in a row? Both games were close -- last year went to OT and 2009 went 5-4 -- so keep them coming!

How come Yourmark does all the speaking for the Panthers? Doesn't the hockey team have their own GM. Dall Tallon? OR is he a mute, like everyone else at Bank Atlantic Center?

The Montreal games on New Year's Eve are only fun for Die Hard Panthers fans if the Panthers WIN. Otherwise, it's like a prison rape. You're surrounded by thousands of hooligans who have no respect for you, and they cheer every time something bad happens to you. It's sickening. On the other hand, if the Panthers actually manage to win one of these games (who am I kidding?), it will be the ultimate way to ring in the New Year (sending 15,000 whining foreigners out into the night to look for buffets so they won't have to tip).

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