LAVAL, QC — It’s been an offseason full of change for the Laval Rocket, but it’s time to look forward to the new season and break down the schedule!
Home Opener: October 14, 2022
The Rocket open their season at home against the Belleville Senators. Rocket fans are very familiar with the Senators — the two teams have played one another more than any other opponent in regular-season matchups over the last two seasons.
They enjoy a back-and-forth style of play against one another, and every game seems to turn into a grudge match. These two young teams have carved out an exciting rivalry in the North Division, and there may be no better way to open a season than against your greatest foe. It’s sure to be an exciting home opener, at the very least.
Last Game of the Regular Season: April 14, 2023
The Rocket will close out the regular season on the road in a building where they have enjoyed some success: Upstate Medical University Arena. They’re ending the regular season on hostile ice against the Syracuse Crunch.
The matchups against our North Division rivals are going to be exciting 💪
Which team are you looking forward to seeing at @Place_Bell?
— Rocket de Laval (@RocketLaval) July 28, 2022
Longest Home Stand: Six games — October 26 – November 5, 2022
- October 26: Belleville Senators
- October 28: Rochester Americans
- October 29: Rochester Americans
- November 2: Toronto Marlies
- November 4: Toronto Marlies
- November 5: Lehigh Valley Phantoms
The Rocket are familiar enough with the Senators and Americans but don’t see the Phantoms very often. The back-to-back against the Americans should be easy enough for the Rocket — it’s the same team for two games, and they spent last season facing off against Rochester in their quest for North Division dominance. The back-to-back against the Marlies and the Phantoms will be a little more exciting; two nights, two different teams that have to travel to play in a barn that is nothing short of an energy boost for the team that calls it home. The Phantoms have some travel they have to deal with on top of the back-to-back situation they’ll also find themselves on the tail-end of, while Laval deals with Toronto at Place Bell, Lehigh Valley squares off against Belleville at CAA Arena.
Longest Road Trip: Five games, twice — November 25 – December 4, 2022, and February 17 – 25, 2022
- November 25: Belleville Senators
- November 26: Belleville Senators
- November 30: Utica Comets
- December 3: Abbotsford Canucks
- December 4: Abbotsford Canucks
This trip will take the Rocket the furthest from home — all the way out to Abbotsford, British Columbia! Luckily, there’s a good amount of breathing room between the earlier games on the east side of the continent before the back-to-back against the Canucks.
- February 17: Belleville Senators
- February 18: Belleville Senators
- February 20: Belleville Senators
- February 24: Rochester Americans
- February 25: Toronto Marlies
The Rocket narrowly avoid a three-in-three scenario against the Senators but still face two back-to-backs in those five games. The good news for Rocket fans is that this road trip is all on the east side of the continent — that makes it easier for fans to catch games without traveling to the other side of North America.
Three-in-three: November 11 – November 13, 2022
Three different teams, three days, all on the road:
- November 11: Utica Comets
- November 12: Lehigh Valley Phantoms
- November 13: Hershey Bears
There’s only one of the fabled three-in-three sets for the Rocket in the coming season. They have a total of 20 back-to-back sets throughout 72 games.
- October 19: The Rocket take on the Springfield Thunderbirds — the team that eliminated the Rocket from the Calder Cup Playoffs last season
- October 21: The Rocket go to Wilkes-Barre/ Scranton and are likely to face their former captain, Xavier Ouellet — Ouellet signed with the Pittsburgh Penguins as a free agent earlier this month
- October 28: The Rocket and the Rochester Americans meet up for the first time since Laval eliminated Rochester from the playoffs
- November 5: Louie Belpedio and the Lehigh Valley Phantom come to town for the first time since Belpedio signed with the Philidelphia Flyers as a free agent earlier this month
- November 16: The Abbotsford Canucks stop by for their first meeting with Madison Bowey since he signed with the Montreal Canadiens as a free agent earlier this month
- December 21: The Rocket travel to Syracuse to take on the Crunch for the first time since eliminating them from the Calder Cup Playoffs; Anthony Richard faces off against his former team for the first time since signing with the Montreal Canadiens as a free agent earlier this month
- December 23: Should Ouellet be a member of the Lehigh Valley roster, he’ll play his first game back at Place Bell since leaving the Rocket
Notable Dates: February 5 – 6, 2022
The Rocket will finally be hosting the American Hockey League All-Star Classic! It’s been years in the making, having been postponed multiple times due to COVID-19 regulations in Canada and the league’s own precautions.
When the AHL announced that Laval was the host for the next ASC in 2021, the Rocket were a fledgling team searching to find their footing in the AHL. They’ve come a long way since then — they earned their place in the postseason, went on a solid playoff run, and made a name for themselves in the league. No matter what their season looks like leading up to the ASC, the Rocket have finally made it to their glorious moment in the spotlight!
Le Rocket sur la route en 2022-23 🚀✈️🚌
The Rocket on the road in 22-23
— Rocket de Laval (@RocketLaval) July 27, 2022
Laval’s 2022-23 lineup will look very different from the one they closed last season with. As rookie camp and the National Hockey League’s preseason draw closer and wrap up, a clearer picture of precisely what that See explanation for proper use is going to look like will emerge. For now — at least — we can start to ask the hockey gods, “Is it October yet?”
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