New Years Day has become part of of the newest NHL Tradition – The Winter Classic. I will admit I am a huge fan of this as the excitement and fanfare of the game make it truly unique and enjoyable to watch. Even if its two teams you dislike, if you’re a hockey fan you watch this game.
Well it was rumored to for 2011 that the game would be at the new Yankee Stadium between the NJ Devils and NY Rangers but that is not the case. The NHL is opening it up to a bid process similar to the Superbowl. This should provide for even more fanfare and for cities to get even more creative. The difference is while the NFL likes warm weather cities the NHL will be looking at cold weather cities.
However, I would like to see one major change to the Winter Classic. While it does occur early in the season and not at the halfway point I’d like to see it converted into the All-Star Game. Some argue that what makes the Winter Classic so great is the fact that the game counts and making it the All-Star game would take away some of the meaning.
I must argue that point because everyone who plays in the classic loves the experience and while some hitting might be taken away if its the All-Star game I think the passion and the play would be incredible. Just imagine if the skills competition was done outdoors, that would be great. Remember, a lot of these players started playing by skating on frozen ponds or backyard rinks so it would show off the real skill.
Bottom line however is that The Winter Classic is a huge success and as long as the NHL keeps the tradition it will remain a success and a great experience for players and fans.
And that’s … From My Mellin