Hockey Canada badly misjudged the hockey fans in Montreal

Auston Matthews  (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

MONTREAL – A few random thoughts as your correspondent packs up and heads back to Toronto for the medal round of the World Junior Championship:

* The next time our friends at Hockey Canada and TSN remind us how important this tournament is to Canada’s hockey identity and cultural fabric – and that should happen in say, the next 30 seconds or so – it might be relevant to point out that only one in 10 Canadians actually watched Canada’s preliminary-round games on television and, in Montreal at least, that patriotism has definitive limit. Read more

Blackhawks’ Crawford, Raanta show off Winter Classic masks

(via Chase Agnello-Dean/Chicago Blackhawks)

For lovers of goalie masks, Christmas came a little bit later. On Tuesday, Chicago Blackhawks goaltenders Corey Crawford and Antti Raanta gave fans a first look at their masks for the upcoming Winter Classic.

Both masks pay a bit of an homage to the Blackhawks history, while also incorporating parts of Chicago or thematic nods to the Winter Classic itself. Read more

Braden Holtby pays tribute to Olaf Kolzig with Winter Classic mask

Jared Clinton
Holtby Mask featured

No goaltender is more synonymous with the Washington Capitals than Olaf Kolzig, and for the Winter Classic, present day Capitals netminder Braden Holtby will pay tribute to ‘Olie the Goalie’ with a special mask.

Holtby’s mask for the outdoor game may not bear any marks that specifically mention Kolzig, but the design is actually very similar to that one which Kolzig wore during the ‘90s. Read more

Winter Classic rendering shows Nationals Park rocking the red

Jared Clinton
Washington Winter Classic render

With the Winter Classic more than a week away, we can already get our first glimpse of the scene at Nationals Park thanks to an architectural rendering provided by the NHL.

The rendering, which was released yesterday afternoon, shows the home of MLB’s Washington Nationals with the game already in full swing, with what some would consider ideal weather: light snow fall and what appears to be perfect temperatures. Read more

Kings unveil new Stadium Series jersey…but about those pants…

Adam Proteau
Kings Stadium Series jersey (image via L.A. Kings)

The Los Angeles Kings unveiled their new Stadium Series jersey Tuesday night – and while it’s up for debate whether they’re a fashion crime or not, the hockey pants that go along with them need to be imprisoned for life.

The sweaters themselves – which will debut at California’s Levi Stadium when the Sharks host the Kings in an outdoor game Feb. 21 – aren’t eyesores, even if the actual design takes some getting used to:

L.A. Kings Stadium Series jerseys hang in the team store. (image via L.A. Kings)

(image via L.A. Kings)

However, the overall look – specifically, the white pants that match the bottom part of the jersey – just looks wrong. I’m not going to say they appear diaper-like, but they do smack of Cooperalls, and that’s reason enough to demand a redesign: Read more

First look at San Jose Sharks’ Stadium Series jersey

Jared Clinton
San Jose Sharks' Joe Thornton

Be it Winter Classic or Stadium Series, part of the hype surrounding the outdoor events is the unveiling of new jerseys. Months ahead of the February tilt before San Jose and Los Angeles, it appears we have our first look at the Sharks new threads.

The photo, which first appeared on the aptly named hockey aesthetics blog Icethetics, shows a three-color look that we’ve never seen from the Sharks. With little history to draw from, the Sharks didn’t have many options when it came to throwback jerseys so this is a nice compromise. Read more

The greater outdoors: 10 locales we’d love to see host an outdoor game

Jared Clinton
Outdoor game

Earlier this week, commissioner Gary Bettman said that an outdoor game is on its way to Minnesota. The ‘State of Hockey’ is well deserving of the attraction, but there are other cities that should be on the NHL’s radar.

In recent years, we’ve seen games in Chicago, Vancouver, New York, Detroit, and even Los Angeles. There will be outdoor tilts in Washington and San Jose this season, and Winnipeg is coming up in 2016. But who has been left out and which cities would we like to see get a chance at hosting a Stadium Series or Winter Classic? Read more