May 11, 2017 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Rockford IceHogs
Rockford, Ill. - The Rockford IceHogs, in conjunction with the American Hockey League, announced on Thursday the opponent breakdown for the 2017-18 season. The IceHogs schedule will feature three new opponents at the BMO Harris Bank Center and a total of 13 different teams will make their way to Rockford.
The IceHogs will battle two teams from the AHL's Eastern Conference, marking the first time since the 2008-09 season that Rockford has clashed with a foe from the East. The home-and-home matchups include a pair of Pennsylvania-based teams in the Hershey Bears (Washington Capitals), the oldest franchise and charter member of the American Hockey League, and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (Pittsburgh Penguins).
The IceHogs have not faced an opponent from the Eastern Conference since going head-to-head with the Norfolk Admirals during the 2008-09 campaign. During the team's AHL era, Rockford has only played against two other Eastern Conference-based teams - the Manchester Monarchs and Providence Bruins.
For the third consecutive year, the IceHogs will take on a new team from the golden coast. Rockford and the Bakersfield Condors (Edmonton Oilers) will meet once at the BMO Harris Bank Center and once at the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield, Cal. The swing through California will also include a matchup against the San Jose Barracuda (San Jose Sharks), who the IceHogs last visited for San Jose's first-ever home game on Oct. 9, 2015, and the Ontario Reign (L.A. Kings).
In addition, the AHL announce the new divisional alignment and the Charlotte Checkers have moved to the league's Atlantic Division in the Eastern Conference. The AHL features three new teams in the Belleville Senators, Binghamton Devils, and Laval Rocket, all of which will play in the North Division. The new alignment for the 2017-18 season is:
EASTERN CONFERENCE Atlantic Division Bridgeport Sound Tigers Charlotte Checkers Hartford Wolf Pack Hershey Bears Lehigh Valley Phantoms Providence Bruins Springfield Thunderbirds Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
North Division Belleville Senators Binghamton Devils Laval Rocket Rochester Americans Syracuse Crunch Toronto Marlies Utica Comets
WESTERN CONFERENCE Central Division Chicago Wolves Cleveland Monsters Grand Rapids Griffins Iowa Wild Manitoba Moose Milwaukee Admirals Rockford IceHogs
Pacific Division Bakersfield Condors Ontario Reign San Antonio Rampage San Diego Gulls San Jose Barracuda Stockton Heat Texas Stars Tucson Roadrunners
The format for the 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs will be finalized by the Board of Governors at its Annual Meeting in Hilton Head Island, S.C., July 2-6, and the complete playing schedule for the 2017-18 regular season, which begins Oct. 6, will be announced this summer.