NHL games outdoors? Hmmmmmmm

I was running through a Google Search and just “accidently” ran across this while searching for something else. I find this rather interesting. What do you think?
NHL May Hold Outdoor Game

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Filed at 5:03 p.m. ET

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — NHL hockey might turn a little bit colder.

The NHL is evaluating a proposal that could see the Edmonton Oilers play the Calgary Flames in an outdoor game in 2004.

League spokesman Frank Brown said the NHL is considering the idea of staging the game in 60,000-seat Commonwealth Stadium, but it is still far from becoming a reality.

“There’s no possible way that we are in anything more than an evaluation process right now,” Brown said. “There are a lot of things to be considered.”

Edmonton Mayor Bill Smith said the proposal has received tentative approval from both the league and the players’ association and the city is now in the process of working out a lease with the Oilers.

Smith said it could turn out to be a six-year event, with one game held in November each year.

The Oilers would be responsible for the logistics, including setting up the ice surface at the football stadium, Smith said.

If approved, the outdoor game would be a first for the modern NHL but not for hockey.

Last October, Michigan State played Michigan in a college game that drew a record 74,554 spectators to Michigan State’s football stadium.

The 3-3 tie was played in windy conditions with the temperature slightly above freezing.

In 1991, the Los Angeles Kings played the New York Rangers in an exhibition game outside Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. The first outdoor game in NHL history took place in evening temperatures in the mid-80s.

Weather will be a big consideration in allowing the game in Edmonton, Brown said. Commonwealth Stadium — home to the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos — can be blustery in late fall, and the temperature is below freezing most nights.

The stadium has been home to several high-profile sporting events, including the world track and field championships and the FIFA under-19 women’s soccer championship.

The CFL’s Grey Cup will be held there in November.


11 Responses to NHL games outdoors? Hmmmmmmm

  1. habs_88_4life says:

    I think it would be awesome and set attendance records for most people to watch a NHL game

  2. DG says:

    This is one is pleasently intriguing. If held outdoors, the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames could almost triple attendance and reap the benefits that would incur. I’m curious as to what precedent this would set as well: would other teams start doing this as well? Think about it: if the game is successful, other teams may think to themselves “look how much money we could make too”. Every team would stage the game just to make money, and, though it may be a stretch, outdoor rinks may one day replace indoor rinks. Hey, with modern technology, it is possible.

    -DG

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  3. Bigman says:

    it holds 60 000 and we got a total ticket count of about 47 000 but thats – the tournament passes the largest ever for a womens soccer event!!! communwealth also im not sure if u memtioned it but it held the 2001 world championchips in atheletics and had a fine turn out( i didnt read the entire article but i wanted to comment)!!! and i hope edm can get the all star game here in 2005-2007 also maybe to be held at communwealth stadium

    thx

    ma=x

  4. Forsberg21 says:

    You ran across this ina google search? How could you miss it on all the main web sites(ESPN, NHL,TSN) for the past 3 or 4 days. Anyways would be interesting to see a regular season game that counts on untested ice. I would definitly watch it.

  5. Synergy27 says:

    Just as a novelty, hell, why not? But as for indoor rinks being replaced one day, it will never happen. Hockey and Basketball are played indoors because of the relatively small size of the playing surface (as compared to football, soccer, baseball). Sure fans would be willing to sit in the last row of a stadium to witness a one time only outdoor hockey game, but filling a stadium 41 times a year would be impossible. The game is just not big enough (dimensionally).

  6. Rushing says:

    UH……..I guess you haven’t thought about “tennis” courts? They are “outside” and completely surrounded by the stands. At the same time, the Hockey Ice is “bigger” than a tennis court which would make the number of fans or “more stands” surrounding it.

    A tennis court size is about 60′ x 120′ while the hocky floor is 200′ x 85′ so……….even if you add a little extra feet on the sides of the tennis court you still have a bigger hockey stadium.

  7. cecilturtle says:

    Going to school at New Hampshire College now called Southern New Hampshire University I saw quite a few outdoor games. As a fan I’ll tell you I froze my ass off! But when I played on the outdoor rink the cold made no difference. I don’t think there would be a home field advantage if a team played all their home games outside. Maybe if a warm weather team came to play their? But then again most if not all hockey players are from cold weather areas. The fans though would be extreamly uncomfortable in the middle of winter. I don’t see any reason for a team to play outside for an entire season. As for a game or 2 during the season… I don’t know. Whats the point? You might get more people to come to the game, but what if there is bad weather? You could put a roof over the Ice or even have heated seats. But then what is the point of even playing outside?

    Cecil Turtle

  8. gprodent says:

    Well I remember seeing a picture of that college game held last year, and the closest spectator was like 100 feet from the edge of the rink. People buy those tickets in arenas to get up front and see the action up close. Yeah they had record attendence for that college game too, but they probably sold the tickets dirt cheap. Think the NHL will do that? I very seriously doubt it. All in all I think it’s just a gimmick, a novelty. I’d be suprised if it was somewhat successful.

  9. Rushing says:

    Football goes on in weather when it’s down below zero. You see fans jumping up and down cheering and screaming in this could weather. The wild and crazy fans sometimes even have their shirts off.

  10. cecilturtle says:

    I am a season ticket holder for the NY Football Giants since they started playing in Giants Stadium. When it is cold and the swirling wind makes it feel like its -15 below 0, it really takes so much out of you. It is so tuff getting up for work on Monday… Especially if the Giants lose.

    Maybe for a game or two in the beginning of the regular season when the weather is not so bad in order to draw a larger crowd might work out ? But it might not be worth the risk of having bad weather for that game? Is it worth the risk of postponing the game or playing in bad weather? I have found, in hockey in particular, when one person on the team gets a cold or the flu the whole team gets sick because they all share the locker room “games & Practice” and recycled air on the airplane or bus. I really don’t see the point of playing outside when there is no need to.

    Cecil Turtle

  11. Stevieforpresident says:

    How about wings vs avs in Michigan Stadium??

    That would be sweet.

    just imagine 110,000 screaming fans going crazy for the wings!

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