The American Hockey League released their regular season schedule on July 11 — much earlier than in previous years.
The Toronto Marlies will remain in the North Division and will face three teams under different names for 2017-18:
- The Laval Rocket, now the affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens, will line up against Toronto on 12 occasions, with the two sides set to do battle in Laval for the first time on November 1.
- The Ottawa Senators’ new affiliate based in Belleville will also face the Marlies 12 times, with the first meeting scheduled for Saturday, November 25 at the ACC.
- Regular foes Syracuse Crunch and Rochester Americans will play the Marlies eight occasions apiece, while the Binghamton Devils (now New Jersey’s affiliate) will take on Toronto just six times.
The Charlotte Checkers have joined the Atlantic Division after being reassigned from the Western Conference and are slated for four meetings with the Marlies. The Bridgeport Sound Tigers, Hartford Wolf Pack, Hershey Bears, Lehigh Valley Phantoms, Providence Bruins, Springfield Thunderbirds and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins make up the rest of the Atlantic, with each team playing a home-and-away against those teams.
The only Western Conference team on Toronto’s schedule is the Manitoba Moose, who the Marlies will square off against four times.
There are no long homestands for Toronto during 2017-18, with the longest stretch on home ice just three games on four separate occasions. The best month to catch the team at Ricoh will be in March when nine games scheduled are at the Coliseum in 31 days.
The November Winter Fair road trip will encompass six games in 11 days, finishing with a back-to-back in Binghamton.
The Marlies are faced with the prospect of six three-in-three weekends and have been done few favours with the scheduling in that regard — 11 of the 18 games will be played away from the Ricoh. Two are entirely on the road and all involve some kind of travel. The season will finish with a pair of three in three’s, with all six games against divisional rivals.
Toronto will call the ACC home four times in 2017-18, including games on Boxing Day and Family Day. Belleville (twice), Hershey and Laval will provide the opposition, all in matinee encounters.
The Marlies kick off the season with a pair of weekend games against the Utica Comets at Ricoh Coliseum (October 7-8) and complete the schedule against Laval and Belleville (April 14-15) on home ice.