Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 04/07/13 at 01:32 PM ET
from Craig Custance of ESPN,
NHL COO John Collins said the league is in high level discussions with the NHL's Board of Governors, interested teams and the NHLPA about expanding the U.S. outdoor game schedule beyond the Winter Classic as soon as next season. In 2011, the league hosted both the Winter Classic and Heritage Classic, but the Heritage has traditionally been between two Canadian teams.
"It's not necessarily a new conversation," Collins said on Sunday. "We've been looking at this and talking about it for a while. I think now, we're looking at it real hard."
The motivation for more American outdoor games is simple. The Winter Classic is a huge success each year for the NHL in driving interest and revenue for the game. There's no shortage of interested cities in hosting the game and Collins said expanding the outdoor idea is an opportunity for the league to get an outdoor game in markets that might not work nationally for the Winter Classic game and also for markets that recently hosted the game, opening up the possibility of a quicker return of outdoor hockey to cities like Boston, Chicago and Pittsburgh.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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