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Report: Weekend in January might feature outdoor games at Dodger Stadium and Yankee Stadium

Apr 8, 2013, 9:51 AM EDT

The new Yankee Stadium is shown on March 31, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.
(March 31, 2009 - Source: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

On Sunday, NHL COO John Collins discussed the possibility of playing multiple outdoor games next season, including potentially one at Dodger Stadium.

A Kings representative confirmed that a Los Angeles outdoor game is “moving in the direction of happening,” according to LA Kings Insider. The rink would be operational for two weeks to allow for an alumni game and other contests. The actual NHL game would be played at night so that the sun wouldn’t be shining onto the ice.

That might just be part one in an ambitious weekend for the NHL though.

The game, which would also reportedly feature the Anaheim Ducks, would take place on Saturday Jan. 25, 2014. The NHL has interest in holding a second outdoor game the next day in New York, ideally in Yankee Stadium, according to the Los Angeles Times.

That’s all in addition to the Winter Classic, which will be between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs on Jan. 1, 2014.

The NHL does see a potential downside in holding too many outdoor games.

“There are people who say you’ll dilute what is a good, special thing,” Collins said in a Yahoo! report. “No one would be more concerned about not screwing up a good thing than we would be.”

At the same time there is, as NHL commissioner Gary Bettman put it, “tremendous interest” in outdoor games. There are plenty of cities and teams that want to host them, including those that have already gotten a turn.

“Putting aside its national impact, when you see what it does locally, it’s incredible,” Bettman said.

If these ambitions become a reality, then more cities will be able to experience that local impact.


Report: NHL exploring outdoor game at Dodger Stadium

  1. Helper Sports - Apr 8, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Playing an out door game in LA, is a joke. Hockey started on frozen lakes and ponds, not beaches and ocean. Not only could it make all NHL outdoor games less of an event; it could make the NHL more of a joke around the country. The NHL has too many issue as it is. Why add more.

  2. danaking - Apr 8, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    NHL policy: If it ain’t broke, fix it until it is.

    They’ll reach a point where these games aren’t special anymore. Pretty soon they’ll want to play one in Miller park or Safeco Field or Chase Ballpark, where, if the weather doesn’t cooperate, they can close the roof.

  3. broadstbully33 - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:16 AM

    Terrible idea. Winter classic will not be classic if you over due it.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Apr 8, 2013 at 1:21 PM

      No, this is wonderful, especially the proposed college game that week between NCAA powerhouses UCLA and USC! Oh, wait.

  4. quizguy66 - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:17 AM

    They should do 60 of these games every year – clearly having more of them will make them even more special, right? Heck do the whole season outdoors.


  5. govtminion - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:21 AM

    That’s right, Bettman, strangle that goose- who needs golden eggs anyway?

  6. yougotgirouxed - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:21 AM

    Playing an outdoor game in LA is dumb. Hockey doesn’t belong there in the first place. To me the Winter Classic is an homage to hockey’s roots and gives many players a chance to play outdoors for the first time since they were kids. The NBA wouldn’t have a game in January on a playground with chain nets to get the same point across. Bettman, dont screw up something that is great the way it is.

  7. east96st - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:40 AM

    Night time temps in LA in January can range from near freezing to 60 degrees with the daytime temps occasionally going over 80. If it’s cold out, no one in LA will go to the game because “it’s too cold”. If it’s warm that night, especially if the daytime temp went up over 70, the ice will be a mess. How, exactly, are they going to pull this off?

  8. jkay1818 - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    This reminds me of when the Kings played the Rangers in an exhibition game in Vegas. That’s exactly how a game in LA should be played, as an exhibition game.
    Would fans even go? Dodger fans leave the stadium by the 7th, so what? will the park clear out in the second period. Stupid idea, but tons of more deserving hockey cities that should get an outdoor game than LA. Cue the “blomfeld” elvis youtube post on how LA is so much more superior.

  9. kingsforever - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    For anyone that says “hockey doesn’t belong in LA” let me remind that it technically doesn’t even belong in the USA at all. But that’s where the NHL, the best hockey league in the world, is based. And they can choose to play an outdoor game wherever they want!

    Freeway face off games are the best! GKG! Ducks Suck!

  10. slickvb82 - Apr 8, 2013 at 12:19 PM

    I don’t like this at all, it will completely take away from the significance of the Winter Classic.

    GO WILD!!

  11. northstarnic - Apr 8, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    Nice to see that, for the most part, we can all finally agree on something. Just a horrible idea, especially the proposed slush fest in LA.

  12. gbar22 - Apr 8, 2013 at 1:07 PM

    Way too many. I like it because its a once a year thing and I like the idea of those cities getting it but in subsequent years. The NHL will screw it up if they play too many.

  13. capsfan19 - Apr 8, 2013 at 1:26 PM

    DC! Do one in washington!!

  14. shortsxit34 - Apr 8, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    I said this last time PHT had a post about an outdoor game in LA.

    As somebody who has lived in So. Cal my entire life, this is a horrible idea. I’m sure Kings fans (Blomfeld, you around?) will love this idea and see this as a chance to prove they are just as good as an Original Six fan base, and that hockey here is just as popular as up in Canada, but that simply isn’t the case.

    The Kings have a wonderful fan base that are trully diehard fans. The skill level of players coming out of Cali (and other non-traditional markets) is rising quickly with more and more players making the NHL. People that claim otherwise are ignorant of hockey in these markets.

    However, an outdoor game LA, or any other warm climate area, is just stupid. If Bettman wants to reward the Kings with an outdoor game, fine. But make them the visitors.

    It doesn’t matter that, supposedly, the ice making gear can handle the warm weather of a So. Cal night. It doesn’t matter if the ice would be perfect. Outdoor hockey does not belong here, (unless its roller hockey.) The Winter Classic is about hockey returning to its roots, to kids playing on a frozen pond, to moms having to drag their kids home at night to eat dinner while the kids cry, “just five more minutes.” We don’t have that here. Its not a matter of who has better fans or a better team. It’s geography.

    If the NHL wants to use it as a cash cow (and let’s face it, that’s the only reason we’re having this discussion), then go ahead. We can play some outdoor hockey on slush, with the beach and a sunset in the background, palmtrees surrounding the rink, fans wearing sunglasses and flip flops…hockey the way it was meant to be played.

    The thing that kills me the most is the people that would show up. Yes, there would be diehard fans, but mostly it would be bandwaggoners, movie stars, the rich and yuppy, people that want to go just to say they were a part. Not the true hockey fans that realize the significance of what the game is supposed to represent.

  15. shortsxit34 - Apr 8, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    Wow, that was a lot to write on a cell phone. Please forgive any grammatical errors.

  16. theagitator1691 - Apr 8, 2013 at 4:58 PM

    If those chumps in LA get an outdoor game the Coyotes better get one as well. That’s right outdoor hockey in the desert.

  17. jpanders - Apr 8, 2013 at 10:12 PM

    This will kill the winter classic. Without scarcity people will start to realize its just 1 of 82

  18. clefty1 - Apr 9, 2013 at 10:39 AM

    The idea of the Winter Classic is to have a game which hockey returns to its roots which is frozen lakes/ponds and snow not palm trees and the desert. One outdoor game per season is enough..

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