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NHL Releases Panthers 2012-2013 Schedule: Florida Panthers Open With Tampa Bay Lightning

The NHL released the schedules for the 2012-13 season on Thursday and the defending Southeast Division champions know they have a hard wall to climb to repeat as division champions.

The Panthers open the 2012-13 season at home on Saturday, October 13 against the Tampa Bay Lightning. After the home opener, the Panthers play five of their next six games on the road, including a rematch with Tampa Bay and games against fellow division rivals Washington Capitals and Winnipeg Jets.

The Panthers get a six-game home stand from February 24 to March 10. But the Panthers also have five stretches during the season where they will play four or more games away from Miami. The Panthers close out the 2012-13 season on Saturday April 13 against the Pittsburgh Penguins at home.

For the complete Florida Panthers schedule, check the NHL's official website.

For more on the Panthers, visit Litter Box Cats. For the latest news and notes from around the league, check out SB Nation's NHL Hub.

Photographs by, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.