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Blackhawks announce 2016-2017 regular-season schedule

The Blackhawks will open their 2016-17 regular-season against the St. Louis Blues at the United Center.

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Blackhawks will host the St. Louis Blues on Oct. 12 to open their 2016-2017 regular-season schedule, the team announced Tuesday.

The Hawks and Blues also meet in the 2017 Winter Classic on Jan. 2 at Busch Stadium. It will be the Hawks' league-leading fifth outdoor game and fourth in as many years. For the Blues it is their first outdoor game. The Hawks have posted a 1-3 record in outdoor games with their lone win a 5-1 rout of Pittsburgh at a snowy Soldier Field in 2014.

The Blackhawks are 5-1 in home openers at the United Center dating back to 2010. Their lone loss was this past season to the New York Rangers, 3-2, after raising their 2014-15 Stanley Cup banner to the rafters.

Chicago will visits Nashville to play the Predators in their home opener Oct. 14 at Bridgestone Arena.

The Hawks will play 22 of their 41 home games on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday with their longest road trip of the season being Nov. 15 through 26, a seven-game swing for the annual Circus Trip. After a six-game ice-show trip the Hawks will receive a bye week from Feb. 12-17.

Under the NHL's current schedule format, the Hawks will play the other six teams within their division for a total of 29 games. The Hawks play five games each against Colorado, Dallas, Nashville, St. Louis and Winnipeg. They'll face Minnesota four times.

Chicago will play the remaining seven Western Conference teams three times each for a total of 21 games. The Hawks will meet each Eastern Conference team once at home and once on the road for a total of 32 out-of-conference games.

The Blackhawks will meet the defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins on March 1 at the United Center and March 29 in Pittsburgh.

The complete television broadcast schedule will be released at a later date.

Additionally, the Hawks announced its six-game preseason schedule, which includes three home contests: Pittsburgh Penguins (Sept. 28), St. Louis (Oct. 1) and Detroit Red Wings (Oct. 4). Chicago will also play three road games: Pittsburgh (Sept. 30), Detroit (Oct. 2) and St. Louis (Oct. 8).

The preseason slate will showcase lots of prospects has 11 current Hawks will be playing in the World Cup of Hockey, which goes from Sept. 17 to Oct. 1 in Toronto.