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Kings and Ducks open the 2018-19 regular season with a road-heavy slate

The Kings and Ducks should aim to make the most of their first matchup next season because they won’t see each other for quite a while after that.

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The rivalry, among the best in the NHL, begins with a Nov. 6 game at Staples Center, but the teams won’t play again until March 10 and face each other four times instead of five because of the scheduling matrix.

The NHL schedule released Thursday otherwise varied little from the recent past as the Kings and Ducks start the season and go through the winter with a heavy slate of road games.

The Ducks play seven of their first 11 on the road, and will play 10 of 11 games away from home from Jan. 13 to Feb. 9, split up by the All-Star break Jan. 25-28.

The Kings play six of their first 11 games on the road and have a Dec. 8 game against the Vegas Golden Knights, the first of four games between the teams in a 25-day span, capped by a New Year’s Day game at T-Mobile Arena.

That rivalry jump-started when the Kings were swept by the expansion Golden Knights in the first round of the playoffs in April. The series ends with the regular-season finale at Staples Center on April 6.

Other notable dates include the Kings against the New York Islanders on Feb. 2 at the Nassau Coliseum, the Islanders’ home venue from 1972 to 2015 that is being used for selected dates while a new arena is being built.

The Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals visit the Ducks and Kings on Feb.17-18, respectively.

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