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Red Wings to host Winter Classic in 2013/14?

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Red Wings in talks with NHL to host outdoor game within next two seasons | MLive.com

I like it. I think it would be better at the Big House. The Red Wings would definitely be able to sell it out, IMO. The largest NHL attendance figure is from the Sabres/Pens winter classic in 2008 at Ralph Wilson (71,217). Obviously the largest attendance number for any hockey game is the Big Chill at the Big House (104,173 certified)...I think a Wings game in the Big House could outdraw that. I'd love to see it.

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I don't think the Wings nor the league nor NBC want to pay the university and so I think it will be at Copa. Either way, I am soooooooooooooo bleeping going! I went to the Big Chill and had a blast. I'll be buying my tickets the day they come out, assuming it actually does come here though!

Edited by Mr.TaterSalad

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It would almost certainly be at Comerica Park, since it is owned by the owner of the Detroit Red Wings.

They'll play whoever is the top rival or marquee team after the 2012 or 2013 seasons end. The Blackhawks are a good candidate. So are the Penguins.

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Wrigley and Fenway have proved that football fields are a much better option for the fans in attendance. I would still go if it was at Comerica, but some seats would be FAR away from the action.

Who would they play? Lets rule out some teams out. Lets remember the NHL has come at this with a "rivalry game" angle every year so far.

No central division teams (Already played Chicago, no draw for CBJ or NSH....MAYBE St.Louis but doubtful.)

The rivalry with Colorado is dead, and nobody else from the Northwest seems like a logical fit. Rule out Edmonton, Calgary, Minny, and Van.

Same with the Pacific, no real interesting opponents for Detroit there (LA, PHX, DAL, SJ, ANA)

Pittsburgh has played in 2 games, rule them out. Same with NYR and Philly, since they are playing this year. NJ and NYI would equal low ratings at the moment.

Nothing in the southeast with CAR, Winnipeg, FLA, TB, and Washington has played already

That leaves the northeast. Nobody will want to see the Sens or Sabres. Montreal is an original 6 team and would be interesting. Maybe a possibility there. Boston has played at Fenway, but no real current rivarly.

Who does that leave?

The Toronto Maple Leafs.

(yes, I could have just said that, but this was more fun.)

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Toronto Maple Leafs @ Detroit Red Wings

Big House

8:00 pm

January 1st, 2014

Eh?

First night game outside, largest attendence in hockey history, etc.

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That would be incredible. Toronto and Chicago I feel are the only two viable opponents for the Wings. They're both close enough to get some "away team" ticket sales even though I don't think it would be needed to sell out.

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It will not be a Canadian team. NBC owns the Winter Classic rights and doesn't air Canadian teams as it is on the network. Add onto that, Canada has their own game, the Heritage Classic.

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Pleaaasseeeeee play at the big house. I'd love to walk down from my dorm room to see the Wings play.

EDIT: Well actually I'd be at home at the time. But whatever, I still want it to happen.

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Why would Illitch call Brandon to use his stadium, when Illitch has a nice stadium of his own?

Why don't people do a little bit of research before they write a article for once? Its like the CEO of McDonald's asking Burger King for help.

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Was at the game at Wrigley a couple years ago and would love to see the Wings play in the game again. While the Big House would be a better venue and hold a huge crowd, playing at Comerica makes more sense since Illitch owns the stadium. I doubt they would play the Blackhawks again so hopefully it would be an Original Six team or a team with some rivalry. Pittsburgh would be great but they have been in it enough.

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It will not be a Canadian team. NBC owns the Winter Classic rights and doesn't air Canadian teams as it is on the network. Add onto that, Canada has their own game, the Heritage Classic.

I know NBC has the rights, but CBC still broadcasts the Winter Classic every year (and they do a MUCH better job of it)

The Heritage Classic resumed last year, the only other one was in Edmonton in 2003. Though this was cool for the Canadian fans, but it just doesn't come close to the Winter Classic, simply because it's not played on New Year's Day, and thus does not get the same amount of attention. Just because we have our own scaled down version, it doesn't mean that Canadian teams should be excluded.

Bettman is trying to sell the American teams, I get that. But a Leafs Wings matchup would have arguably the two best teams in terms of value, and overall fan base. the NHL would be stupid to ignore how good of a matchup this would be. I hate to admit it, but maybe just MAYBE the Leafs will be putting it together by this time as well, which would eliminate the argument that a doormat is playing in this game.

I will never count on the NHL to operate with the best interest of the fans in mind, because that rarely happens. But this years game has to be the end of these somewhat uninteresting Eastern conference matchups. We have seen Pittsburgh x2, Philly x2, Buffalo, Washington, and Boston from the East. I feel bad for Minnesota, they are the hockey capital of America, and they get no love due to the fact that the Wild are a crappy draw for the rest of the country. That city deserves a Winter Classic more than anyone, I really hope they get one sometime.

Edited by Kdoogie24

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It's just a very limited selection. I highly doubt any of the southern/western teams even WANT to play outside on January 1st. San Jose, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Dallas, Tampa Bay, Florida, etc. are not going to want to play in the Winter Classic ever.

Why not Winnipeg if they want new teams? They might improve by then a little bit...

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If a Winter Classic is held in Michigan, there will be heavy pressure by the NHL to hold it in the Big House... CoPa would be easier and better for Illitch, but the Big House brings something new to the Winter Classic - an attendence record... They'd probably be able to beat the certified record set by the UM-MSU game, making it not only a new NHL record (by over 40,000) but also a World Record.

CoPa would be like every other Winter Classic... Doing the same thing over and over would eventually get boring.

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It's just a very limited selection. I highly doubt any of the southern/western teams even WANT to play outside on January 1st. San Jose, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Dallas, Tampa Bay, Florida, etc. are not going to want to play in the Winter Classic ever.

Why not Winnipeg if they want new teams? They might improve by then a little bit...

For the TV ratings and payday alone, I think they would want to play in the Classic. The thing is, does NBC want them in it? I think Detroit/San Jose could be a very interesting match-up given the heated series the two teams have had lately.

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I can't see any possibility of the game being played at Michigan Stadium even though that would be great exposure for the league and a good story line. Ilitch would be leaving a ton of money on the table by not playing at Comerica when you figure in concessions and all the parking they own around the stadium. Even if he worked out a deal with the school over money, the school owns so little parking around the Big House that it wouldn't make sense for him. I also can't see the school allowing the Wings to break their world attendance record in their building.

Plus, by having it downtown the NHL can put on a winter festival like was done for the Super Bowl and there are hundreds more hotel rooms within a mile radius of the stadium. Is just makes more sense logistically and financially for the team and the league to play it downtown.

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Would the whole Ilitch thing be at play with regard to Comerica Park vs. another venue? I've always thought the Winter Classic was a league run event, like the playoffs, and the teams involved, especially the home team, are compensated for their trouble. They are normally giving up a home game and the revenues that go along with it. This is about a TV event for the league and for NBC and if Ilitch puts up too big of a fight over the venue then they may tell him to take a hike. Teams are fighting to be involved in this both as a home team and a visiting team so I think at that point the league and network hold all the cards. If they want it at Michigan Stadium or somewhere else, it will be done.

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After I posted that I started thinking that it's an NHL run production. I still believe Michigan won't allow their record to be broken by the NHL at their place and downtown is the best option if the league wants to make it fan-friendly for those who might not go to the game.

Now would MSU step in and offer their place if the NHL wants a football stadium? Or would UM agree to host, but cap the tickets sold in order to keep the record. I think the record means an awful lot to UM.

Edited by dadair6

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that's a good point. And MSU has the experience already of hosting an outdoor game. I also think the lure of Michigan stadium for the league would be the attendance and if they can't have that then it wouldn't matter. Perhaps what's being negotiated is Ilitch giving up his take on tickets or whatever in of the other benefits, like parking/concessions, and that makes the lower attendance figure acceptable to the league. I definately would perefer Comerica Park over a football stadium because I think it makes it more unique. I'd also be more likely to attend. Heck, leave the rink up and let people at that year's Tigerfest skate on it.

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that's a good point. And MSU has the experience already of hosting an outdoor game. I also think the lure of Michigan stadium for the league would be the attendance and if they can't have that then it wouldn't matter. Perhaps what's being negotiated is Ilitch giving up his take on tickets or whatever in of the other benefits, like parking/concessions, and that makes the lower attendance figure acceptable to the league. I definately would perefer Comerica Park over a football stadium because I think it makes it more unique. I'd also be more likely to attend. Heck, leave the rink up and let people at that year's Tigerfest skate on it.

When Fenway hosted, there were at least a few high profile Highschool hockey games played on the ice before Jan 1st. not sure if Pittsburgh hosted any last year due to the weather.

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Michigan Stadium is owned by the University and on University land and I believe that means - NO BEER OR ALCOHOL. So that's probably out.

Also, as posted earlier, why would Illitch take a money-making opportunity out of his own pocket when he OWNS his stadium?

And no way is Michigan gonna stage an event on January 1st, when their football team is likely to be playing in a bowl game somewhere on that day....they would do nothing to distract from the attention of the football team.

Toronto would be a great opponent since they don't have an outdoor stadium of their own to play in. We'd get 30,000 people from Canada alone.

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I highly doubt any of the southern/western teams even WANT to play outside on January 1st. San Jose, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Dallas, Tampa Bay, Florida, etc. are not going to want to play in the Winter Classic ever.

Oh, that's right-- hockey is only cold in the north! I totally forgot that the Panthers play on a sheet of hot ice!

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I would not be shocked to see Wings Pens. Its still the biggest single game draw for tv viewers im sure in the US

The only way Pittsburgh is involved in anymore Winter Classics is if Crosby plays. His latest setback isn't good news for the leauge's promotional department. I think an Original Six matchup is the leader in the clubhouse right now.

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