Photo by Michael Caples/MiHockey

MiHockey’s ‘Games to Watch’ list for the 2018-19 season

It’s October, which officially means that it’s hockey season.

In MiHockey’s annual ‘Games to Watch’ list, we offer up a highlighted list of some of the in-state battles we are certainly excited to see this upcoming season.

If you’re looking for great hockey to watch within the friendly confines of the Great Lakes State, here you go; we outline some of the top home games for all of Michigan’s top teams from the professional (NHL, AHL and ECHL), NCAA Division 1 and junior (USHL and OHL) ranks.

There are certainly more – there’s never enough hockey around here, right? – but if you were looking to fill up your calendar, here’s a good start.



Oct. 3 – Spirit vs. Firebirds

Oct. 4 – Blue Jackets vs. Red Wings (Zach Werenski and Co. take part in the Wings’ home opener)

Oct. 5 – Team USA (NTDP Under-17 Team) vs. Madison Capitols (First home game for NTDP U17s)

Oct. 6 – Vermont vs. Michigan (Wolverines’ opener)

Oct. 6 – University of Lethbridge vs. Western Michigan (Broncos’ opener)

Oct. 6 – Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team) vs. Ferris State (Bulldogs’ opener)

Oct. 7 – University of Windsor vs. Michigan State (Spartans’ opener)

Oct. 11 – Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings (John Tavares, Auston Matthews, Mike Babcock and the Leafs show up for the Wings’ second home game of the season)

Oct. 12 – Hershey Bears vs. Griffins (Home opener for the Wings’ AHL affiliate)

Oct. 12 – Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team) vs. Michigan

Oct. 12-13 – Northern Michigan vs. Michigan State

Oct. 12-13 – Minnesota Duluth vs. Michigan Tech (Hall of Fame Weekend, Huskies’ opener)

Oct. 12-13 – Nipissing University vs. Lake Superior State (Lakers’ home opener)

Oct. 12 – Western Michigan vs. Ferris State

Oct. 13 – Ferris State vs. Western Michigan

Oct. 13 – Minnesota vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team)

Oct. 13 – Chicago vs. Muskegon (Lumberjacks’ home opener)

Oct. 19 – Western Michigan vs. Michigan

Oct. 19 – Komets vs. K-Wings (Kalamazoo’s home opener)

Oct. 20 – Michigan vs. Western Michigan

Oct. 20 – Firebirds vs. Spirit

Oct. 22 – Hurricanes vs. Red Wings (Potential battle of the Svechnikov brothers, as Andrei – a former Muskegon Lumberjack – and Evgeny fight for roster spots)

Oct. 26 – Jets vs. Red Wings (the Michigan-centric Winnipeg Jets make the trip to Little Caesars Arena)

Oct. 26 – Muskegon vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-17 Team)

Oct. 26-27 – Bemidji State vs. Northern Michigan (Wildcats’ home opener)

Oct. 30 – Walleye vs. K-Wings (10:30 a.m. start time)


Nov. 1 – Muskegon vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team, 10:30 a.m. start)

Nov. 2 – Ferris State vs. Michigan State

Nov. 2-3 – Michigan vs. Lake Superior State

Nov. 3 – Oilers vs. Red Wings (Connor McDavid comes to Hockeytown)

Nov. 3 – Michigan State vs. Ferris State

Nov. 9 – Walleye vs. K-Wings

Nov. 9-10 – Notre Dame vs. Michigan

Nov. 9-10 – Michigan Tech vs. Ferris State

Nov. 14 – IceHogs vs. Griffins (Annual School Day Game, puck drops at 11 a.m.)

Nov. 14 – Spirit vs. Firebirds

Nov. 16-17 – Notre Dame vs. Michigan State

Nov. 21 – Bruins vs. Red Wings (Thanksgiving Eve game against Torey Krug and the Bruins)

Nov. 21 – Bowling Green vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team)

Nov. 23-24 – Northern Michigan vs. Lake Superior State

Nov. 24 – Sabres vs. Red Wings (Check out Rasmus Dahlin, Jack Eichel and the Sabres)

Nov. 30 – Michigan vs. Michigan State


Dec. 1 – Michigan State vs. Michigan

Dec. 7 – Michigan Tech vs. Northern Michigan

Dec. 7-8 – Minnesota vs. Michigan

Dec. 7-8 – Minnesota Duluth vs. Western Michigan

Dec. 8 – Maine vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team)

Dec. 8 – Northern Michigan vs. Michigan Tech

Dec. 14-15 – Ferris State vs. Northern Michigan

Dec. 15 – Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team) vs. Michigan State

Dec. 16 – Lake Superior State vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team)

Dec. 19 – Muskegon vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team, 10:30 a.m. puck drop)

Dec. 19 – Walleye vs. K-Wings

Dec. 30 – Firebirds vs. Spirit

Dec. 30-31 – Great Lakes Invitational at Little Caesars Arena (Michigan Tech, Michigan, Michigan State and Lake Superior State)

Dec. 31 – Panthers vs. Red Wings (New Year’s Eve at LCA)

Dec. 31 – IceHogs vs. Griffins (New Year’s Eve at Van Andel)


Jan. 1 – Holy Cross vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team)

Jan. 2 – Spirit vs. Firebirds

Jan. 4-5 – Ohio State vs. Michigan State

Jan. 6 – Capitals vs. Red Wings (The defending Stanley Cup champions come to town)

Jan. 8 – Merrimack vs. Michigan

Jan. 8 – Adrian College vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-18 Team)

Jan. 11-12 – Miami vs. Western Michigan

Jan. 19 – Admirals vs. Griffins (Start of Great Skate Winterfest)


Feb. 1 – Spirit vs. Firebirds

Feb. 1-2 – Lake Superior State vs. Ferris State

Feb. 2 – Firebirds vs. Spirit

Feb. 7 – Golden Knights vs. Red Wings (Because who doesn’t want to see Las Vegas?)

Feb. 8 – Michigan State vs. Michigan

Feb. 8-9 – Minnesota State vs. Michigan Tech (Winter Carnival)

Feb. 9 – Michigan vs. Michigan State (Duel in the D at LCA)

Feb. 13 – Firebirds vs. Spirit

Feb. 15-16 – Penn State vs. Michigan State

Feb. 15-16 – North Dakota vs. Western Michigan

Feb. 15-16 – Michigan Tech vs. Lake Superior State

Feb. 19 – Walleye vs. K-Wings

Feb. 20 – Blackhawks vs. Red Wings (The lone visit by the ‘Hawks in 2018-19)

Feb. 22 – Muskegon vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-17 Team)

Feb. 22-23 – Ohio State vs. Michigan

Feb. 22-23 – Lake Superior State vs. Northern Michigan

Feb. 24 – Sharks vs. Red Wings (Quite the blue line unit the Sharks have, you might want to see it in-person)

Feb. 27 – Walleye vs. K-Wings


March 1 – Northern Michigan vs. Michigan Tech

March 1-2 – Ferris State vs. Lake Superior State

March 2 – Michigan Tech vs. Northern Michigan

March 8 – Wild vs. Griffins (Eighth annual Purple Community Game for cancer research)

March 17 – Walleye vs. K-Wings (St. Patrick’s Day)

April (so far)

April 6 – Sabres vs. Red Wings (Regular-season wrap-up for the Wings)

April 11 – Muskegon vs. Team USA (NTDP Under-17 Team)

April 12 – Moose vs. Griffins (Grand Rapids’ home finale for the regular season)