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Toronto Mayor pushes for Winter Classic

Jan 4, 2012, 2:21 PM EDT

Rob Ford

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford wants the Winter Classic to come to his city.

According to the Toronto Star, Ford is hoping the NHL’s signature outdoor game can be played between the Leafs and Habs at the federally-owned Downsview Park.

Downsview Park is a former military base that accommodated 800,000 people when Pope John Paul II visited in 2002. It also hosted a massive benefit rock concert in 2003, with approximately half a million in attendance to see acts like Justin Timberlake, The Guess Who, Rush, AC/DC, and The Rolling Stones.

Apropos of nothing, Ford was once kicked out of a Leafs game for getting wasted and yelling obscenities. Then he lied about it. Then he admitted it.

Don Cherry’s a big fan.

Related: Toronto wants to host Winter Classic

  1. solador78 - Jan 4, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    I’m surprised that Mayor Ford hasn’t somehow worked this angle into his Sopranos Waterfront development plan.

  2. sportsinhd - Jan 4, 2012 at 3:16 PM

    I would also like a pony, not going to happen.

    What the NHL should do is have two “Winter Classic” type games a year, one in Canada and one in the United States. Keep the American game near the 1st of January, and put the Canadian version on Boxing Day. It is a load of crap that only American cities are getting to host this.

    • davebabychreturns - Jan 4, 2012 at 3:32 PM

      They were doing exactly that, the Canadian version was called the “Heritage Classic” except it did not happen on Boxing Day and it got old, I guess.

    • elvispocomo - Jan 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

      It’s called the Heritage Classic when Canadian teams play each other (as mentioned) but there are fewer Canadian teams so it doesn’t make as much sense to host the Heritage Classic every year lke the Winter Classic is. The novelty would wear off if your team was playing in one every 3 years.

  3. nothanksimdriving123 - Jan 4, 2012 at 6:16 PM

    With Canada having just 7 NHL teams and not all of those cities having suitable outdoor facilities, holding the Heritage Classic every year does run the risk of losing the thrill. We should note that not all the NHL’s US cities are suitable for outdoor games, either. One possibility is having the Winter Classic in Canada, say, once every three years or so. Move it around, spread the joy. I’d like to see next year’s in Minneapolis at the new Twins ball park, perhaps hosting the Jets! Little chance of rain.
    Also, not that Mayor Ford is a dummy or anything, but if he favors something, examine it carefully for major flaws. Does Downsview Park have raised grandstands to seat 30,000 plus with a view of the rink?

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