It's been a little while since I posted here and I apologize for that. Things have been busy with work and family obligations. But that is changing and in the coming weeks and months I intend to be here multiple times each week again.
Yesterday I took my first real look at the schedule. Here are my thoughts:
What I like:
- 12 games against Wilkes-Barre...of course we already knew this but I still like it.
- Finishing the season with Norfolk and Syracuse instead of WB and Philly...should (I repeat SHOULD) be easier.
- Only 3 (technically 2) long road trips...in November they have a 4 game trip and March a 4 game trip. Another 4 game trip in January features 2 games in Manitoba so it is really only a 3 city stop.
What I don't like:
- Starting with a very tough lineup. 6 of the first 8 games are against Adirondack, Wilkes Barre, and Bingo....3 teams that could make the playoffs in the East division.
- Seems very back loaded. The season is 190 days long (10/3-4/10) and 24 of the games are in the final 46 days. Including 14 road games in that period.
- Finishing and (mostly) starting the season on the road. Sure the opening night game is in Hershey but the Bears get 10 of their first 15 on the road and they finish with 5 of 7 on the road.
- 15 3 in 3's and 6 4 in 5's including 4 in a row from 3/12-4/4.....14 games in 24 days.
- November 4-8 (first 4 in 5) all in New England. Trip covers 1050 miles and takes the Bears to Lowell, Portland, Manchester, and Providence before heading back to Hershey.
- 2/24 and ending 3/2 the Bears head to Cleveland for a 10:45am game, next night in Toronto (Thursday game), home for Bridgeport Saturday, Wilkes Barre on Sunday for 3:00 start, then to Bridgeport on Tuesday before heading home to Hershey. That trip will cover over 1500 miles when it is done.
- Right after that trip is done 3/12-3/21 the Bears will travel as many as 1700 miles. They start @ Adirondack on the 12th, @ Springfield on Saturday the 13th, @ Worcester on Sunday the 14th. Now assume they come home to Hershey before heading to Binghamton on Wednesday the 17th, then back home for Albany Friday the 19th, then on the road to Syracuse on Saturday the 20th, before finishing AT HOME against Adirondack on Sunday the 21st. BRUTAL STRETCH.
Not sure how the Bears schedule compares to the rest of the league but they will definitely face their fair share of adversity in regards to the schedule and travel.
Next week I will take a look at what the roster looks like now and what could happen prior to the start of the season on October 3.