When does the NHL season start for 2021-22? TV channel, live streams for season-opening games

Justin Bieber’s 2021 song “Hold On,” which may or may not have been directed at hockey fans — specifically Maple Leafs’ fans — included the lyrics: “I need you to hold on, heaven is a place not too far away.”

Well, hockey fans — and Leafs’ fans, too — hockey is back.

The NHL’s 2021-22 season is here and there are nine months of action ahead culminating with the Stanley Cup being handed out in June. While everything returns back to the pre-COVID-19 days (full 82-game schedule! play everyone! cross-border and coast-to-coast travel!), there are a few new things. One of the biggest is the league’s 32nd franchise, the Seattle Kraken, finally set to hit the ice and join the Pacific Division. Additionally, the Coyotes shift to the Central.

Here’s everything you need to know about the NHL’s 2021-22 season openers and home openers, including the start date and TV schedules for all 32 teams.

MORE: Watch the 2021-22 NHL season on ESPN+

When does the 2021-22 NHL season start?

Just 97 days since the Lightning lifted the Stanley Cup, the NHL — and the team — are back on the ice. The defending champs will kick off the season with a tilt against the Penguins. Originally, Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby was not expected to play in the opener; however, while his status is still unknown, he did practice with the team on Saturday for the first time since undergoing left wrist surgery in September. Evgeni Malkin will definitely miss the game — and the first two months of the season — due to offseason knee surgery.

The night-capper will see the Kraken play in their first-ever regular-season game when they head to Vegas to take on the Golden Knights. 

NHL TV schedule for 2021-22 opening night

NHL 2021-22: Top 10 defensemen | Top 10 goalies | Top 10 forwards | Top 25 under 25

Note: 1000+ NHL games are available on ESPN+ in the United States

NHL 2021-22 season-opening game schedule

Here’s a list of the season openers for all 32 teams, as well as start times and TV channels.

(All times are Eastern)

ODDS, PREDICTIONS: Stanley Cup | Calder | Vezina | Norris | Hart 

NHL 2021-22 home-opening game schedule

Here’s a list of the home openers for all 32 teams, as well as start times and TV channels.

(All times are Eastern)

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