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Capitals will play host to 2015 Winter Classic

Sep 21, 2013, 10:28 AM EDT

Capitals Winter Classic

It turns out all the speculation was true for the Washington Capitals.

Team owner Ted Leonsis announced at the team’s Capitals Convention that they will be hosting the Winter Classic in Washington, D.C. on January 1, 2015. Leonsis says he’s happy to reward his fans with a great event.

“We are extremely excited to host the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic and bring this great event to the D.C. area,” Leonsis said. “Our great fan base deserves to experience the magnificence of an outdoor game. We are thrilled to once again be part of this great event.”

A venue and an opponent for the event are still needed, but it’s believed Nationals Park in Washington is at the front of the line. FedEx Field and RFK Stadium could also be possibilities.

As for the opponent, it’s believed the Philadelphia Flyers and Boston Bruins are the favorites to face the Capitals, but that will be determined at a later date.

The last we saw of the Capitals in the Winter Classic was back in 2011 in Pittsburgh at Heinz Field against the Penguins. That day was overshadowed by not just warm weather and rain but also by the concussion suffered by Pens captain Sidney Crosby.

  1. pxland - Sep 21, 2013 at 10:42 AM

    So glad they spread this thing around.

  2. petey39 - Sep 21, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    Way to go NHL. Hopefully the year after that will be pens and flyers (sarcasm). Are there only 8 teams in the NHL?

  3. zdeb93 - Sep 21, 2013 at 10:54 AM

    Is it just me or does Ovechkin look way too tan in this pic?

  4. avfanforlife - Sep 21, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    Maybe Chicago or Detroit deserve a chance to play. Everyone knows how hot it is in Denver on Jan 1st, so that rules out AV’s at Coors Field.

  5. jrocknstuff - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:06 AM

    Man you guys sure complain a lot. I’m gonna try to do something a bit different, like try to predict the opponent. Odds on favorite is Crosby again because that gets the ratings, but I’m hoping for something a bit different. I actually want to see a younger team, maybe something along the lines of Tavares? I think Caps/Isles would be pretty damn cool. Of course, can they still be called the Isles playing in Brooklyn?

    • illbringdabeers - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      Brooklyn is on Long Island so yes they can

      • jhuck92 - Sep 21, 2013 at 7:30 PM

        Both of the “New York” Jets and Giants play in New Jersey, so I guess location doesn’t matter. It’s football, yes, but it’s still relevant.

    • stakex - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:20 AM

      It might be cool for the Caps to play the Islanders, but its not going to happen. Islander fans don’t even want to go and watch the Islanders, so the league would never use them for their showpiece event that’s all about ratings.

    • pxland - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:26 AM

      Guide us. Show us how to be better….

  6. stakex - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    Yes, the NHL seems to be using the same teams in the Winter Classic year after year. There is a reason for that however, and its the same reason that the games on NBC almost always feature the same 8-10 teams…. ratings. The WC teams have all been big market teams that also have national appeal.

    Remember that the WC is a big money maker for the NHL, and its never going to be about fairness… its going to be about which teams can make the league (and players) the most money. That might suck for smaller, or less popular markets, but that’s the capitalistic world we live in.

    As for who the Caps will play, I personally think it should be the Rangers. Yea I’m a Rangers fan so I’m bias on the issue, but lets face it…. with the Caps and Rangers meeting almost every year in the playoffs lately, they are pretty big rivals right now. Another Ovechkin/Crosby showdown wouldn’t be a bad idea either now that Ovi has found his game. The Flyers or Boston playing the Caps just seems kinda blah.

  7. 13datsyuk13 - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:30 AM

    Montreal and Boston in Montreal?

  8. frankenklein9009 - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:33 AM

    Denver would love to see one of these and we got the fan base to go with it. As for an opponent Detroit did just switch to the Atlantic… Maybe we see them get one though it wouldn’t surprise me if they held off so they could host the next one.

  9. jrocknstuff - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Islanders fans don’t want to go to the Colliseum to watch them. That place is an absolute disaster. They’ll show up once they move to Brooklyn, they’re good fans. Especially now that they finally have a decent product on the ice.

    I never realized Brooklyn was part of Long Island. But Long Island isn’t part of the borough of Brooklyn, correct? That would only be Kings County?

    • illbringdabeers - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:42 AM

      No, you’re right. (I think Brooklyn is the only thing in Kings County if I’m not mistaken, but I could be incorrect)

    • martysbetter - Sep 21, 2013 at 12:55 PM

      Technically Brooklyn isn’t really a part of Long Island, its just on the same landmass….which is an island.

  10. illbringdabeers - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    The Lightening Vs. The Panthers @ Sun Life Stadium !!!!!

    • Ross Hollebon - Sep 21, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      or in Manilla. The “Thrilla” part II

      • barkar942 - Sep 21, 2013 at 12:56 PM

        Not the Thrilla. This is hockey. Ice is involved. Call it “The Chilla”!

  11. martysbetter - Sep 21, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    I would love to see one of these with Toronto vs Montreal or another Canadian rivalry, personally.

    • barkar942 - Sep 21, 2013 at 12:57 PM

      It is called The Heritage Classic in February.

      • martysbetter - Sep 21, 2013 at 1:03 PM

        True, I’d like to see a 24/7 and all that for it though – I’ve always wondered what the atmosphere is like in markets where hockey is the #1 sport.

  12. longcutskolvikes - Sep 21, 2013 at 12:57 PM

    Let me qualify this statement by letting you know that I am a Habs fan from Minnesota. It’s total BS the Western Conference isn’t getting the Winter Classic in 2015.

  13. pmonte3122 - Sep 21, 2013 at 3:44 PM

    It’s nice to know another team is getting a shot

  14. rgledz - Sep 21, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    What a load. There are so many other viable venues for this event and they continuously give it to east coast teams and constantly have to worry about the temp. Ratings is a weak excuse. If this game was in Minnesota or Chicago, Hawks vs. Wild, it would be a ratings blockbuster with two huge hockey markets involved. Then you have a team that’s actually won a Cup in the last few years and an up and coming team. Rather than the same old Ovi vs. Crosby garbage. Chances are Sid will be hurt before the damn game even happens and the Caps will be so far below .500 it won’t even matter. Nice job NHL.

    • illashell - Sep 21, 2013 at 6:56 PM

      There hasn’t been any ‘Ovi vs. Crosby garbage’ in quite a while. Also, it’s explicitly stated in the article that the Bruins and Flyers are the teams believed to be involved in this.

  15. jimw81 - Sep 21, 2013 at 7:48 PM

    bad choice. Better yet, this is dumb move on nhl part. the jackpot is penguins vs flyers in happy valley. the two logical places to play the game is at fedex stadium or camden yards. i can’t see them letting nhl use it to play the game.

    • jimw81 - Sep 21, 2013 at 7:55 PM

      this rivalry is so intense i think it can steal viewers from college bowl games and people would watch.caps can’t draw flies. NHL is making a very bad mistake.

  16. 28giroux28 - Sep 22, 2013 at 1:33 AM

    Just a thought about it always being the same teams. The NFL’s Thanksgiving Day games always feature the Lions, Cowboys and Packers in some fashion, vs. some other team. As an event that serves for the sole purpose of popularizing the game to more casual fans, having a shortlist of teams is probably a good thing, Although I would love to see one in Minny….

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