If you’re going to avoid midweek games — and the Sound Tigers do, particularly now that they run the building, like the Bubonic Plague — you push games to the weekend. The result this year of having one Wednesday-night home game is a team-record 16 three-in-threes.
We have seen some weird things in the third game in three days — it’s a conditioning test, but they’re human beings — but it’s rarely a great thing for a team. Was a little curious what the Sound Tigers were going to be up against in that third game.
Actually, in 14 of the 16, the opponent will be finishing three in three as well. The dates that follow are the Sundays to end the three games:
(1) Oct. 19 vs. Springfield. The Sound Tigers come in from Albany; The Falcons come in from Springfield. The travel’s more in Bridgeport’s favor when you consider Springfield starts in Syracuse on Friday, while Bridgeport’s at home.
(2) Nov. 16 vs. Springfield. Bridgeport doesn’t leave the state and plays at home Saturday, while Springfield is at Providence and Worcester before coming here.
(3) Nov. 23 at Albany. Three on the road for Bridgeport, though the first two are Springfield and Hartford. Albany comes in from a Saturday in Binghamton.
(4) Nov. 30 vs. Providence. The Bruins start Friday in Maine and come here with a stop Saturday in Worcester. Bridgeport’s in Manchester on Friday but then home Saturday.
(5) Dec. 7 vs. Lehigh Valley. Convenient, convergent weekend. Both start in Pennsylvania on Friday (Bridgeport at Hershey, the Phantoms at the Penguins). Then they meet Saturday in Allentown.
(6) Dec. 21 vs. Worcester. When I first saw the schedule, my notes got profane here. Bridgeport spends two nights at Norfolk, then comes home for the Sharks at 3 in the afternoon. (Can you charter a plane cheaply?) Worcester won’t be rested, exactly, going at Manchester-at Portland-here, but can’t imagine that’ll be a barnburner.
(7) Jan. 4 vs. Albany. They play the night before, too; Albany’s home on Friday, while Bridgeport’s in Providence, so that’s a slight travel edge for the Sound Tigers.
(8) Jan. 11 at Hartford. The Sound Tigers come in to cap a weekend that goes from Maine to Albany to the capital. The Pack is home Friday and as close as you can get, Springfield, Saturday.
(9) Jan. 18 vs. Syracuse. Another Rematch Sunday. The Crunch start their weekend in Binghamton, while Bridgeport begins its in Providence. Again, edge Bridgeport.
(10) Feb. 8 vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. The first of those two three-in-threes where the opponent isn’t facing the same thing. It’s the Penguins both times, and coincidentally, both times the Pens are coming from Hershey. This time Bridgeport’s in Syracuse on Friday but home Saturday.
(11) Feb. 15 vs. Hershey. The Bears go Friday in Albany and Saturday at home. That’s no fun. Bridgeport comes back from a little New England tour, Providence to Manchester to home.
(12) March 1 vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. Bridgeport has its oddball back-to-back in Springfield this weekend, while the Pens, again, have Friday off before a Hershey trip.
(13) March 22 vs. Binghamton. Before the Senators’ lone trip in, they go home/Wilkes-Barre/here. Bridgeport’s nearby, Springfield/home/home.
(14) March 29 vs. Hershey. Bears at Manchester for two. Sound Tigers at Syracuse and Binghamton. Bus-weary by now? Probably.
(15) April 12 vs. Manchester. They play April 11 in Bridgeport, too. Travel edge to the Monarchs, though, who are home Friday while Bridgeport’s in Syracuse.
(16) April 19 vs. Hartford. They start with each other in Hartford on Friday. But while the Pack goes to Albany in between, Bridgeport goes to… Syracuse.
On the flip side, I count three times on a quick scan that Bridgeport will face a team at the end of a three-in-three while the Sound Tigers themselves will only be finishing a back-to-back. They’ll get the first one out of the way quickly: St. John’s opens Oct. 10 in Providence before coming here for Bridgeport’s opening weekend. A couple of more come later. There’s a little balance on Feb. 22, when Norfolk will be coming from two games in Worcester, while Bridgeport, with Feb. 20 off, has to go to Hershey on Feb. 21. It’ll be a little tougher on March 15 for Syracuse, which is home on March 13 and at Albany on March 14. The Sound Tigers will be at their individual homes on March 13 with a home game March 14.
UConn and Notre Dame are scheduled for a 2 p.m. faceoff on Jan. 18. It would be absolutely fantastic if Bridgeport and Syracuse joined them for warmup at 2:30 or so. But that’s not going to happen. Howard Saffan says the plan is to move UConn-ND to noon and have one admission for both games. At the moment, UConn’s schedule still has the game at 2.
If the Jan. 24 faceoff time of 7:30 popped to you, too, Saffan said there’s a (non-sports) event in the building earlier in the day and they wanted a little extra leeway, just in case.
No Thanksgiving Friday game: Saffan said they think Black Friday has cut into their business that day, so they want to try it on Saturday instead.
Meanwhile Providence had a handful of announcements, including the logical renewal of the affiliation agreement.