Women’s hockey has gotten a big boost over the past season with the birth of the NWHL and the continued success of the CWHL, but the women’s game is set to get big exposure with a matchup on one of hockey’s biggest stages.
According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the NWHL and CWHL will play an interleague contest as part of the events leading up to the Winter Classic between the Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.
“As part of the outdoor game festivities in Boston between the Canadiens and Bruins, two women’s team will play the day before outdoors,” Friedman said Saturday. “Les Canadiennes from the Canadian Women’s Hockey League and the Boston Pride of the National Women’s Hockey League — the two leagues will each have a representative playing head-to-head before the alumni game.” Read more
Less than a decade after hosting the 2011 World Junior Championship, the tournament is set to head back to Buffalo.
According to multiple reports, USA Hockey is prepared to announce Buffalo as the host city for the 2018 world juniors, but there will also be an added wrinkle to the tournament. According to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, the competition will also feature an outdoor game pitting Team USA against Canada. TSN’s Frank Seravalli reported that tournament organizers are expecting a sold out crowd of roughly 71,000 to be in attendance for the contest.
The outdoor game will be hosted at Ralph Wilson Stadium, which was the backdrop for the NHL’s inaugural Winter Classic game in 2008. Read more
The Winter Classic alumni game between the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens is going to be a star-studded affair, but the contest between former members of the Chicago Blackhawks and combination of Minnesota North Stars and Wild promises to have just as much star power.
Both the Blackhawks and Wild announced their alumni teams Tuesday, and the rosters include some all-time greats from the Blackhawks, Wild and North Stars organizations. Nearly 50 alumni will be taking part in the event, including arguably three of the greatest American born players of all-time.
For the Minnesota alumni, longtime Dallas Star Mike Modano, who was drafted first overall by the North Stars in 1988, will be taking part in the game, and he’ll suit up across from fellow American born stars Chris Chelios and Jeremy Roenick, both of whom had some of their best years as members of the Blackhawks. Read more
One of the winningest coaches and biggest personalities in Bruins history is set to step back behind the bench for Boston at the Winter Classic. Sportsnet’s Don Cherry, the host of Saturday night staple Coach’s Corner, has been named as one of the coaches for the outdoor event’s Dec. 31 alumni game.
Cherry, 81, will be joined by a number of former Bruins players and coaches, some of whom he coached during his days in Beantown. The roster will also include another media member, as NBC’s Mike Milbury, who spent two seasons as a bench boss in Boston, will join Cherry behind the bench as a coach. Derek Sanderson, Stan Jonathan, Don Marcotte, Tom McVie and Lyndon Byers will also step behind the bench, with John Bucyk and Eddie Sandford serving as honorary coaches.
As for the players on the club, Bruins president Cam Neely and GM Don Sweeney will be stepping out onto the ice as members of the alumni team. Another legendary Bruin will also be skating with the club, as Ray Bourque will don his No. 77 for the alumni contest. Read more
Hearing news of John Collins’ departure as NHL chief operating officer may not raise the eyebrow of every casual fan prepping a backyard rink. But it should. Especially since Collins, the league’s third in command, is the brain behind the Winter Classic.
Collins, who turns 54 this week, has been with the NHL since 2006. He took over as COO in 2008. He was the driving force for only the Winter Classic, but also the wildly successful HBO 24/7 series, which he shepherded along with producer Ross Greenburg. Collins is largely responsible for the Stadium Series and the league’s national television deals in Canada and the U.S. The league has grown significantly in popularity under his’ guidance.
When Colorado and Detroit square off at Denver’s Coors Field for their 2016 Stadium Series game, the Avalanche will be skating out in a jersey never before worn by the franchise.
Unlike previous teams who have taken the ice in “throwback” or “heritage” jerseys for the outdoor contests, the Avalanche will be wearing a first-of-its-kind primary logo and the jersey design will look more modern than anything the club has worn in its 20 years in the Rockies. The new jersey was modelled by captain Gabriel Landeskog at an event Monday.
The new jersey, which is a primarily white sweater with blue, silver and burgundy striping on the sleeves, features the brand new shoulder patch logo that the Avalanche introduced earlier this off-season as the main logo. Read more
As part of promoting the AHL’s expansion to California, the league is planning to have its first warm-weather outdoor regular season contest.
The league announced Wednesday that the Stockton Heat and Bakersfield Condors, two of the new AHL clubs that help make up the Pacific Division, will take part in an outdoor game on Dec. 18 at Raley Field in West Sacramento, Calif. The game will be part of the Golden State Hockey Rush.
“This event will be a special showcase for our Pacific Division in its inaugural season,” said AHL president David Andrews. “We look forward to this celebration of hockey outdoors and to sharing the experience with the terrific hockey fans in Northern California.” Read more
Fans itching to get a look at what the Stadium Series jerseys might be when the Colorado Avalanche and Detroit Red Wings face off in Denver this season got a preview from an unlikely source.
In a Reebok catalog promoting new merchandise for the upcoming season, the logos for both the Avalanche and Red Wings for the Stadium Series contest adorned two sweaters.
Graphic designer Conrad Burry first posted the image to Twitter, which has since been picked up by hockey design blogs such as SportsLogos.net and Icethetics.info. Read more