The American Hockey League has released the Checkers’ schedule for the 2019-20 season.

In addition to the usual array of schedule downloads, including printable and importable calendars, below are a few highlights and notes from the 76-game slate.

Season tickets, mini plans and group outings can be purchased now by calling (704) 342-4423. Individual game tickets will go on sale in September.

OPENING UP

As they have in all of their AHL seasons thus far, the Checkers will begin on the road, taking on Hartford and Springfield in the first weekend of October. They’ll return home shortly after, however, raising a Calder Cup banner on Friday, Oct. 11 against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

HOME SWEET HOME

Whereas last season saw Charlotte’s schedule heavily favoring home games early – the Checkers played 21 road games over the first three months and just 14 at home – this season’s slate is more even. Through those same first three months the Checkers will play an even shake of 16 games at home and 16 games on the road. The flip side to that is the end of the schedule, which has the Checkers away from home for 15 of the last 25 games over the final three months of the season.

THREE-IN-THREES

After having four instances in each of their last two campaigns, the Checkers’ have a lighter load of three-in-threes this season. The team will face two sets of three-games-in-three nights on the road in 2019-20, once to close out February and once a month later in March. The first instance sees them face Lehigh Valley twice before finishing off in Hershey, while the second instance has Charlotte playing Hartford, Bridgeport and Providence on consecutive nights.

Last season the Checkers went 7-5-0 in three-in-threes. They lost two of three in each of the first two instances, but turned it around with a Canadian sweep in their third instance and by taking two of three in the final one. All-in-all, the Checkers have won six of their last seven three-in-three games.

WE MEET AGAIN

As the defending Calder Cup champs, the Checkers will face several opponents who they defeated over the course of their title run. They’ll have to wait a bit to run into their first rematch, however, which is a trip to Hershey on Nov. 15 and 16, returning to the city where the Checkers punched their conference finals ticket. The Providence Bruins return to the Queen City on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 for the first meeting since the Checkers eliminated them in Game 5 of the opening round, while the first Eastern Conference Final rematch against Toronto doesn’t happen until the Marlies visit Charlotte on Jan. 18 and 19.

FAMILIAR FACE

The reigning AHL Coach of the Year and the bench boss for the Checkers’ Calder Cup victory, Mike Vellucci, returns to Charlotte for the first time with his new Penguins club on Jan. 24. This would mark the first time that the Checkers face a former head coach in the same role for another AHL team.

NORTH OF THE BORDER

The Checkers will only be crossing the border to Canada once this season, visiting the Marlies in Toronto for back-to-back contests on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1. Unlike last season, neither the Laval Rocket nor the Belleville Senators are on Charlotte’s slate.

HELLO CLEVELAND

With two fewer opponents on the schedule, the Checkers will be seeing a lot more of the Cleveland Monsters this season. After squaring off four times last season – the Monsters’ first in the Eastern Conference since being division rivals of the Checkers in the West – Charlotte and Cleveland will play eight times in 2019-20. That makes the Monsters the only out-of-division team that the Checkers will see more than four times.

IN THE ATLANTIC

Perennially one of the league’s toughest division’s, the Atlantic will once again make up the bulk of Charlotte’s schedule. The Checkers will play five of their seven division rivals eight times each – Hartford, Springfield, Lehigh Valley, Hershey and Providence – while Bridgeport and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton are on the slate just four times each.

The rest of Charlotte’s schedule is made up of six of the eight North Division teams. As has been the case the last two years, the Checkers won’t face any Western Conference teams during the regular season.
Nicholas Niedzielski
Author: Nicholas NiedzielskiEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Director of Communications Nicholas Niedzielski joined the Checkers in the summer of 2014. A Texas native, he previously worked for the AHL's Texas Stars.