As Memorial Cup hosts the Red Deer Rebels have known for a while where their 2015-16 season will end up.
On Wednesday they found out how it will begin.
The Rebels will open their 72-game Western Hockey League season with a home-and-home series with the Edmonton Oil Kings on Sept. 26 and 27, playing first at the Centrium on the Saturday at 7 p.m. and in Edmonton the next afternoon.
The Rebels wrap up their regular season on March 17 and 19 with another home-and-home series with the Oil Kings, playing in Edmonton on March 17 and at the Centrium on March 19.
There are a few interesting games to keep an eye on this year, in particular it is their turn in the rotation to host the American teams.
The Spokane Chiefs will be at the Centrium on Oct. 30, the Seattle Thunderbirds on Nov. 3, the Everett Silvertips on Jan. 23, the Tri-City Americans on Feb. 13 and the Portland Winterhawks on Feb. 26.
The Rebels will make their first big road trip to the West Coast Oct. 13-17 with games at the Kamloops Blazers, the Kelowna Rockets, the Victoria Royals and Vancouver Giants.
Three weeks later they make their first big road trip into Saskatchewan from Nov. 6-14 with games at the Prince Albert Raiders, the Saskatoon Blades, the Brandon Wheat Kings, the Regina Pats and the Moose Jaw Warriors.
The Rebels will break for Christmas following their Dec. 19 game at the Centrium against the Lethbridge Hurricanes and return to play on Dec. 27 at the Centrium with the first half of another home-and-home set with the Oil Kings, playing the next day at Rexall Place in Edmonton.
The Rebels pre-season schedule was released on Tuesday and will feature five games from Sept. 5-19 with two against the Edmonton Oil Kings, a road trip to Kennewick, Was., to play the Americans and Chiefs and will wrap up with a game in Stettler against the Medicine Hat Tigers.
The Memorial Cup is slated to run from May 19-26, featuring the league champions of the WHL, the Ontario Hockey League and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, plus the host Rebels, unless the Rebels win the WHL title and in that case the team they beat in the final will also qualify.