Flames will see Ovechkin

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:27 AM ET

Alexander the Great is coming to Calgary this season.

So are the completely rebuilt Tampa Bay Lightning -- if anyone is excited about the 2004 Stanley Cup finalists meeting again -- and all five of the Northeast Division squads.

The Flames unveiled their 2008-09 schedule yesterday, and the decrease in divisional games -- down from eight to six -- will allow for more clashes against Eastern Conference teams than in the past three years.

Also coming to Calgary this season are the New York Islanders and Florida Panthers.

Still, the slate is heavily weighted for rivalries to start and end.

For example, the Flames open with a home-and-home series against the Vancouver Canucks, in Vancouver Oct. 9 and then at the Saddledome two nights later.

That's followed with home clashes against Colorado and Edmonton before a road trip to face the Oilers.

The Battle of Alberta also concludes the campaign, April 10 in Edmonton and the next night at the Saddledome.

The Flames and Oilers will also square off at the Saddledome on New Year's Eve, part of a Christmastime schedule that includes home games against Anaheim, Ottawa and Minnesota.

Calgary and Edmonton also face each other as the final instalment of the Hockey Day in Canada triple-header Feb. 21.

Thanks to the Brier being held in the Saddledome in March, the Flames will embark on a seven-game road swing that starts March 3 in Ottawa and ends March 14 in Toronto, with stops also in Philadelphia, Carolina, Atlanta, New Jersey and Detroit.

The Flames will travel to New York to face the Rangers as part of an eastern road swing in December and visit Sidney Crosby and the rest of the Eastern Conference champion Pittsburgh Penguins during a second March trip.

Crosby's Penguins will be among the four teams featured as the league holds four games in Europe.

Pittsburgh will face Ottawa for a pair of games in Stockholm, Sweden, while the Rangers and Tampa Bay will meet twice in Prague, Czech Republic. As well, Detroit and Chicago will face off outside at Wrigley Field on New Year's Day.

Training camp will open in September.

The Flames will hold their summer prospects camp next week, beginning Monday, at the Saddledome.

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ALL TIMES MOUNTAIN

PRE-SEASON

Sept. 23 Florida, 7 p.m.

Sept. 24 Phoenix (at Winnipeg), 6:30 p.m.

Sept. 25 Phoenix, 7 p.m.

Sept. 26 Florida, 7 p.m.

Sept. 30 at Edmonton, 7 p.m.

Oct. 1 at Vancouver, 7 p.m.

Oct. 3 Edmonton, 7 p.m.

REGULAR SEASON

Oct. 9 at Vancouver, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 11 Vancouver, 8 p.m.

Oct. 14 Colorado, 7 p.m.

Oct. 17 Edmonton, 7 p.m.

Oct. 18 at Edmonton, 8 p.m.

Oct. 21 Washington, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 23 at Nashville, 7 p.m.

Oct. 25 at Phoenix, 7 p.m.

Oct. 28 Colorado, 7 p.m.

Oct. 30 Boston, 7 p.m.

Nov. 1 at Los Angeles, 7 p.m.

Nov. 2 at Anaheim, 5 p.m.

Nov. 4 Phoenix, 7 p.m.

Nov. 6 Nashville, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 8 at Columbus, 7 p.m.

Nov. 9 at Chicago, 6 p.m.

Nov. 11 Toronto, 7 p.m.

Nov. 13 at San Jose, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 18 Colorado, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 20 at Colorado, 7 p.m.

Nov. 22 Detroit, 8 p.m.

Nov. 25 Los Angeles, 7 p.m.

Nov. 27 at Vancouver, 7 p.m.

Nov. 29 Vancouver, 8 p.m.

Dec. 2 Dallas, 7 p.m.

Dec. 5 at St. Louis, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 7 at N.Y. Rangers, 7 p.m.

Dec. 9 at Montreal, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 10 at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 12 Florida, 7 p.m.

Dec. 16 at St. Louis 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 17 at Minnesota, 7 p.m.

Dec. 19 Chicago, 7 p.m.

Dec. 23 Anaheim, 7 p.m.

Dec. 27 Ottawa, 8 p.m.

Dec. 29 Minnesota, 7 p.m.

Dec. 31 Edmonton, 8 p.m.

Jan. 3 at Nashville, 2 p.m.

Jan. 4 at Chicago, 6 p.m.

Jan. 6 San Jose, 7 p.m.

Jan. 8 N.Y. Islanders, 7 p.m.

Jan. 13 St. Louis, 7:30 p.m.

Jan. 15 at San Jose, 7:30 p.m.

Jan. 17 Phoenix, 8 p.m.

Jan. 18 at Colorado, 6 p.m.

Jan. 21 Columbus, 8 p.m.

Jan. 28 Buffalo, 6 p.m.

Jan. 30 Nashville, 7 p.m.

Feb. 2 at Colorado, 7 p.m.

Feb. 3 at Dallas, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 5 Chicago, 7 p.m.

Feb. 7 Anaheim, 1 p.m.

Feb. 9 Montreal, 7 p.m.

Feb. 11 at Anaheim, 7 p.m.

Feb. 12 at Los Angeles, 7:30 p.m.

Feb. 14 at Phoenix, 8 p.m.

Feb. 17 Vancouver, 7 p.m.

Feb. 19 at Minnesota, 7 p.m.

Feb. 21 at Edmonton, 8 p.m.

Feb. 24 Columbus, 7 p.m.

Feb. 27 Minnesota, 7 p.m.

March 1 Tampa Bay, 6 p.m.

March 3 at Ottawa, 7:30 p.m.

March 5 at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.

March 6 at Carolina, 7 p.m.

March 8 at Atlanta, 3 p.m.

March 10 at New Jersey, 7 p.m.

March 12 at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.

March 14 at Toronto, 7 p.m.

March 18 Dallas, 7:30 p.m.

March 20 St. Louis, 7 p.m.

March 23 Detroit, 7 p.m.

March 25 at Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.

March 26 at Columbus, 7 p.m.

March 28 Minnesota, 8 p.m.

March 30 San Jose, 7 p.m.

Apr. 2 at Dallas, 7:30 p.m.

Apr. 3 at Minnesota, 7 p.m.

Apr. 6 Los Angeles, 7 p.m.

Apr. 7 at Vancouver, 7 p.m.

Apr. 10 at Edmonton, 7 p.m.

Apr. 11 Edmonton, 8 p.m.

All times subject to change


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