Tickets for the Nashville Predators’ first two home games only are on sale, franchise officials announced Saturday evening shortly after the NHL released its 48-game, post-lockout schedule.
Seats for the remaining 22 contests at Bridgestone Arena will be available at 10 a.m. Friday.
“With such a quick start and just 24 home games, we owe it to those season ticket holders, suite holders and partners to give them the time and opportunity to select all the games they want before going on sale to the general public,” chief executive officer Jeff Cogen said in a statement.
It is not as if urgency is needed beyond the first two games.
Nashville opens the season Saturday against Columbus (7 p.m.) and hosts St. Louis on Monday (5 p.m.).
After that the Predators play their next seven games on the road — a trip that begins Jan. 22, ends Feb. 5 and takes them to St. Louis twice. Including a Feb. 9 contest at Minnesota, eight of their first 11 are on the road.
The 48-game schedule was necessitated by the lockout, imposed by owners on Sept. 15 and not officially ended until Saturday after the NHL Players Association ratified terms of a new collective bargaining agreement. League owners signed off on the deal Wednesday.
The format has each team play two of its division rivals five times each and the other two four times apiece. The remainder consists of three games against every other team in the conference with no inter-conference contests.
Nashville plays five games each against Columbus and Chicago and four each against Detroit and St. Louis. It travels twice to each of the three California markets (Los Angeles, Anaheim and San Jose) but goes to Northwest Canada (Vancouver, Edmonton and Calgary) just once.
For the complete 2013 Nashville Predators' schedule, click here.