2018–19 NHL season
|2018–19 NHL season|
|League||National Hockey League|
|Duration||October 3, 2018 – June 2019|
|Number of games||82|
|Number of teams||31|
|Top draft pick||Rasmus Dahlin|
|Picked by||Buffalo Sabres|
The 2018–19 NHL season will be the 102nd season of operation (101st season of play) of the National Hockey League. 31 teams will be competing in an 82-game regular season. The regular season is scheduled to begin on October 3, 2018, and will end on April 6, 2019. The 2019 Stanley Cup playoffs will then begin a few days afterwards, with the Stanley Cup Finals held in late May to early June.
Collective Bargaining Agreement
The current collective bargaining agreement (CBA) is in its seventh season. The NHL can chose to opt out of the CBA on September 1, 2019, or the NHLPA can choose to opt out of the CBA on September 19, 2019.
No major rule changes have been implemented this season.
On ice ads in the rink corners
After testing them during the 2018 NHL China Games and the 2018 All-Star Game, starting this season all 31 NHL arenas will have new advertising spots on the ice in each of the four rink corners. The league estimates that during every game broadcast, each spot will have about at least 20 minutes of exposure, as well as appearances on highlight videos of goals and saves. Each team will be responsible for selling the new ad spaces on their respective rinks for preseason and regular season games, which could generate a total of up to eight figures of additional revenue for each club per season. The league will then take control of selling the new corner spots during the playoffs, aiming to attract global marketers due to the increased exposure of having every postseason game televised across Canada, the United States, and over 160 other countries.
On December 20, 2017, CBC Sports and Rogers Communications struck an agreement to renew Hockey Night in Canada through the end of Rogers's current broadcast contract. The two sides had previously reached an agreement to extend its original four-year agreement by an additional year.
The 2018 NHL Entry Draft was held June 22 and 23, 2018. The Buffalo Sabres, by virtue of winning the draft lottery on April 28, held the first overall selection, using it to select defenseman Rasmus Dahlin.
Preseason games in China
Two preseason games will be played in China. The Calgary Flames and Boston Bruins will play one game at the Shenzhen Universiade Sports Center in Shenzhen on September 15, 2018 and another game at Cadillac Arena in Beijing on September 19, 2018.
|Team||2017–18 coach||2018–19 coach||Story / Accomplishments|
|Calgary Flames||Glen Gulutzan||Bill Peters||Gulutzan was fired on April 17, following the Flames' failure to make the playoffs. In two seasons, the Flames went 82–68–14 under Gulutzan. The Flames made the playoffs in Gulutzan's first season with the team before missing out the following year. On April 23, Peters was named the Flames' new head coach. He had coached the Carolina Hurricanes the previous four seasons.|
|Carolina Hurricanes||Bill Peters||Rod Brind'Amour||Peters resigned on April 20, following the Hurricanes' failure to make the playoffs. Under Peters the Hurricanes went 137–138–53 and missed the playoffs in all four seasons. On May 8, Brind'Amour, who had spent the previous seven years as an assistant coach for the Hurricanes, was named the Hurricanes' new head coach.|
|Dallas Stars||Ken Hitchcock||Jim Montgomery||Hitchcock retired from coaching on April 13, following the Stars' failure to make the playoffs to become a consultant for the franchise. The Stars went 319–186–60–20 under Hitchcock, winning the Stanley Cup in 1999, going back the following season, and winning the Presidents' Trophy twice. On May 4, Montgomery was named the Stars' new head coach. He led the Denver Pioneers to win the 2017 NCAA championship.|
|New York Islanders||Doug Weight||Barry Trotz||Weight was relieved of his duties by the Islanders on June 5, a few weeks after the hiring of Lou Lamoriello as the president of hockey operations for the Islanders. The Islanders went 59–49–14 under Weight in his one-and-a-half seasons as head coach, never making the playoffs. Weight would remain with the Islanders. On June 21, Trotz was hired as head coach, and was previously the head coach of the Nashville Predators and Washington Capitals with whom he won the Stanley Cup in 2018.|
|New York Rangers||Alain Vigneault||David Quinn||Vigneault was fired by the New York Rangers on April 7, hours after the team's last regular season game after failing to make the playoffs for the first time in nearly a decade and the second time since the 2004–05 NHL lockout. The Rangers went 226–147–37 under Vigneault, going to the Finals in his first year as head coach and winning the Presidents' Trophy the following season. On May 23, Quinn was named the Rangers' new head coach. He previously served as the assistant coach for the Colorado Avalanche during the 2012–13 season.|
|Washington Capitals||Barry Trotz||Todd Reirden||Trotz resigned on June 18 amid speculation of a contract dispute that neither he nor the Capitals confirmed. In four seasons under Trotz, the Capitals went 205–89–34, won two Presidents' Trophies and won the 2018 Stanley Cup Finals. On June 29, Reirden was named head coach by the Capitals. Reirden, in his first NHL head coach position, had been an assistant with the Capitals for all four seasons under Trotz.|
Front office changes
|Team||2017–18 GM||2018–19 GM||Story / Accomplishments|
|Minnesota Wild||Chuck Fletcher||Paul Fenton||Fletcher was relieved of his duties by the Wild on April 23, shortly after their defeat in the first round of the playoffs. He had been the Wild's general manager since the start of the 2009–10 season. Fenton was hired as his replacement on May 21; he had previously held the same position with the American Hockey League's Milwaukee Admirals.|
|New York Islanders||Garth Snow||Lou Lamoriello||Snow was relieved of his duties by the Islanders on June 5, a few weeks after the hiring of Lou Lamoriello as the president of hockey operations for the Islanders. He had been the Islanders' general manager since the start of the 2006–07 season. Lamoriello replaced Snow as the Islanders' new general manager.|
|Team||2017–18 President||2018–19 President||Story / Accomplishments|
|Buffalo Sabres||Russ Brandon||Kim Pegula||Brandon, who served as team president while concurrently serving a similar position with the Buffalo Bills, resigned from both positions on May 1, 2018. He had spent three years as the Sabres' president. Pegula, the wife of owner Terrence Pegula, replaced Brandon in both positions, and became the only current female team president in the NHL.|
- The New York Islanders will move half of their home schedule back to their previous home, the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, after the Barclays Center proved to be unsuitable as a full-time NHL venue. The Islanders will continue to play the remaining half of their home schedule at the Barclays Center, an arrangement that will last until 2021, when Belmont Park Arena is scheduled to open.
- The St. Louis Blues' home arena was renamed from Scottrade Center to Enterprise Center on July 1, 2018.
- The Toronto Maple Leafs' home arena was renamed from the Air Canada Centre to Scotiabank Arena on July 1, 2018.
The regular season will begin on October 3, 2018, and will end on April 6, 2019. Each team will receive a five-day "bye week", all of which will take place in mid-January. The regular season schedule was released on June 21.
Three regular season games, branded as the NHL Global Series, will be played in Europe. The Edmonton Oilers will play against the New Jersey Devils at Scandinavium in Gothenburg, Sweden on October 6, 2018. The Florida Panthers and Winnipeg Jets will play two games at Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland on November 1 and 2, 2018.
- The Winter Classic will be held on January 1, 2019, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Indiana, and will feature the Chicago Blackhawks and the Boston Bruins.
- The NHL Stadium Series will be held on February 23, 2019, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and will feature the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Philadelphia Flyers.
The 2019 National Hockey League All-Star Game will be held in San Jose, California, at SAP Center, home of the San Jose Sharks, on January 26, 2019, the first time it will be held on a Saturday after many years of the All-Star game being played on a Sunday.
- The Anaheim Ducks will wear a new third jersey inspired by the uniforms from their years as the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim from 1993 to 2006.
- The Arizona Coyotes will wear the "Kachina" uniform as the team's new third jerseys. They previously used this design for road games from 1996 to 2003.
- The Carolina Hurricanes will wear a new black third jersey, which was inspired by the third uniform used from 2008 to 2017.
- The New Jersey Devils will wear third jerseys for the first time in franchise history with new white throwback uniforms similar to those worn from 1982 to 1992.
- The Philadelphia Flyers will wear black third jerseys, which were worn in the 2017 Stadium Series.
- The St. Louis Blues will wear third jerseys, which are based on the uniforms worn during the 2017 Winter Classic.
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The Flames and Bruins will clash Sept. 15 in Shenzhen and Sept. 19 in Beijing.
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- "Bruins To Play Blackhawks In 2019 Winter Classic At Notre Dame Stadium". November 18, 2017. Retrieved November 18, 2017.
- "2019 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series Announced". November 19, 2017. Retrieved November 19, 2017.
- "NHL moves up All-Star skills competition, game in 2019". Associated Press. ESPN. April 9, 2018. Retrieved April 10, 2018.
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- "Ducks Unveil 2018-19 Third Jersey for 25th Anniversary Season". NHL.com. July 21, 2018. Retrieved July 23, 2018.
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