(Reuters) - The Chicago Blackhawks and Philadelphia Flyers will open the 2019-20 NHL regular season in the Czech Republic while the Buffalo Sabres and Tampa Bay Lightning play two games in Sweden in November, the league said on Thursday.
The trio of matchups are part of the 2019 NHL Global Series and mark the third consecutive year and eighth season overall that the National Hockey League (NHL) has traveled to Europe for regular-season games.
Chicago and Philadelphia will clash in Prague on Oct. 4 while Buffalo and Tampa Bay will face off in Stockholm on Nov. 8 and Nov. 9, the NHL said in a statement.
That brings the number of regular-season games played in Europe to 28.
Chicago and Philadelphia will also wrap up their training camps in Europe with the Blackhawks playing an exhibition in Germany on Sept. 29 against Eisbaren Berlin and Philadelphia in Switzerland on Sept. 30 to face Lausanne HC.
All four clubs have a number of international players on their rosters, including natives and nationals of the countries they are visiting.
Among the Swedish players going home will be defenceman Rasmus Dahlin, who was taken with the first overall pick by Buffalo in last year’s NHL Draft, and Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman, who was named the league’s top defenceman last year.
For Blackhawks forward Dominik Kahun, a German national born in the Czech Republic, it will be a chance to play in both those countries.
David Kampf of the Blackhawks along with Jakub Voracek, Radko Gudas and Michal Neuvirth of the Flyers will be playing in their home country of the Czech Republic.
Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto, editing by Ed Osmond