Sunday, April 07, 2013

Hockey Winter Classic Virtually Guaranteed to Come to Dodger Stadium This Winter

Well... Color me shocked and surprised.  Check out what David Pagnotta at The Fourth Period writes:
The I's still need to be dotted and the T's still need to be crossed, but it's almost set in stone that we'll see an outdoor game in Los Angeles at Dodger Stadium next season.

According to a well placed source, the parties involved -- the NHL, the Kings, the stadium -- are still putting the finishing touches on the details, but it's "basically a done deal."
I didn't think the NHL was interested.  I remember NHL reps saying that a West Coast game was unworkable because of a time schedule and even recall Bettman (the NHL Commissioner) laughing at the idea.  Now, the greatest gimmick to sports since the introduction of bobbleheads is likely to be coming to the warmer confines of Dodger Stadium.

Woo Hoo!  If this turns out to be true then this is exciting news!

David Pagnotta writes:
For Los Angeles, it'll mark the first regular-season game to occur outdoors in a non-traditional hockey climate. The Kings' opponent is yet to be determined.

Dodger Stadium won't be the only outdoor game, aside from the Winter Classic. The NHL has been involved in endless discussions with the folks over at Yankee Stadium to stage a Rangers' home game in the facility. It's unclear how those conversations have progressed, as the NHL is also considering other alternative venues outside of New York, but their preference is The new House That Ruth Built.

There is some belief that the NHL will stage both outdoor games on the same day, possibly on Hockey Day in America, with the game in the East (likely NYC, around 1pm ET) kicking things off, followed by the game at Dodger Stadium (possibly starting at 1pm PT, 4pm ET).
I suspect we'll hear more about this during the hockey playoffs.  In the meantime, I suggest getting your jersey's ready for some outdoor hockey. 

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