Wild’s 56-game schedule has a college vibe with 28 two-game series
Wild open Jan. 14 at Los Angeles; home opener is Jan. 22 vs. San Jose
After months of waiting for the puck to drop, the Minnesota Wild will officially be back on the ice starting with a Jan. 14 road game against the Los Angeles Kings.
That will serve as Opening Night of a condensed 56-game regular season in which the Wild will play in the NHL’s newly constructed West Coast division.
The schedule features eight games each against the teams in the Wild’s division this season: the Anaheim Ducks, Arizona Coyotes, Colorado Avalanche, Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks, St. Louis Blues and Vegas Golden Knights. This temporary realignment across the league was made necessary because of the ongoing closure of the U.S.-Canada border due to COVID concerns.
The schedule itself has some serious college vibes to it with a bunch of two-game series as the decided format. There will be 28 two-game series in total with most having a day of rest in between games to help teams recover.
For the Wild specifically, they open with a four-game road trip on the West Coast before their Jan. 22 home opener against the San Jose Sharks. That marks the start of a season-long six-game homestand for the Wild.
No start times have been announced. The league is still trying to coordinated logistics surrounding potential early start times to accommodate Midwest teams having to operate on West Coast time for most of this season.
The Wild also have a four-game stretch against the Avalanche early in the season and a four-game stretch against the Blues late in the season. Those series are likely to have some serious playoff implications — and those games surely will play out like a playoff series with the teams facing off for a week straight.
“We’ll be ready to go,” general manager Bill Guerin said. “We know it’s a different world we’re living in and working in right now, so we’re just going to have to roll with the punches.”