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2009 NHL Winter Classic

The NHL has announced the location of the 2009 Winter Classic.

A pair of Original Six teams will square off outdoors as the Chicago Blackhawks host the Detroit Red Wings at Wrigley Field on New Year's Day 2009, a game to be broadcast by Hockey Night in Canada.

If the old Chicago Stadium was loud in its heyday, imagine what 42,000 screaming Hawks fans (rejuvenated by their off-season acquisitions) could sound like? I love the fact that it is two original six teams. I love the fact it is at the hallowed Wrigley Field. I love the fact that NBC has agreed to broadcast the game as well!

The game follows the successful 2008 edition at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo. Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins scored the deciding shootout goal in a 2-1 win over the Sabres on a snowy day in front of nearly 72,000 fans.

The game was watched on the CBC by the second-largest audience ever for an afternoon NHL game. It was also the most watched regular season game in the United States in over a decade.

(emphasis mine)

Can you imagine if the Hawks are contending for the Norris Central Division lead with the Wings - which seems likely for the first time in forever - the hype for this game could be astronomical.

Ty Conklin of Detroit could have the unique experience of taking part in all three recent outdoor NHL contests. He was a member of Edmonton and then Pittsburgh for the previous two games.


I'm really looking forward to this game. I wonder if both teams will wear classic uniforms? Seems likely I would say. I also think the novelty is going to wear off of these outdoor games eventually. But this one seems sure to impress.