NHL New Year’s Message to Flyers, Bruins: Go Play Outside at Lake Tahoe

Photo Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

It was 11 years ago today that the Flyers played in their first Winter Classic – against the Boston Bruins at Fenway Park.

It was the third of 30 NHL outdoor games that have taken place for NHL games over the last 12 seasons.

Today, in lieu of another Winter Classic, cancelled because of COVID-19, it was learned that the Flyers and Bruins are once again going outdoors – in about seven weeks – to play the 32nd outdoor game in the NHL since 2003.

The two teams will be part of a weekend outdoor hockey spectacular taking place at Lake Tahoe, Nevada.

According to a report from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet.ca, the Colorado Avalanche and Vegas Golden Knights will meet on Saturday, Feb. 20 and the Flyers and Bruins will play on Sunday, Feb. 21 at the famed Edgewood Tahoe Resort, home of the annual celebrity golf tournament.

This weekend set at Lake Tahoe, which should be a really cool setting, will not be played in front of fans because of the ongoing pandemic.

It will, however, offer the NHL an opportunity to try out new broadcast toys, such as drone cameras, and offer a real picturesque backdrop to the game of hockey, one that was sort of portrayed in the movie Mystery, Alaska.

According to the report, this is considered a one-off event for the NHL at this time, but if they find it to be successful, they may try to bring an occasional game to an off-beat location that offers an awesome, natural backdrop to the sport.

Other locations the league looked into for this event included Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada and Park City, Utah.

The weekend of outdoor hockey will replace a postponed Stadium Series game that was originally slated to be played that weekend at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, N.C., the home stadium of North Carolina State football, between the Carolina Hurricanes and an unannounced opponent.

The Hurricanes will still host a Stadium Series game in February, 2022.

For the Flyers, his would mark their fifth outdoor game in the past 10 seasons.

They lost the Winter Classic in Boston in 2010, 2-1 in overtime to the Bruins and followed that up with a Winter Classic loss (3-2) to the New York Rangers at Citizens Bank Park in 2012.

They dropped a Stadium Series game in 2017 to the Penguins (4-2) at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh before paying back the Pens with a 4-3 overtime win in a Stadium Series game at Lincoln Financial Field in 2019.

This season’s Winter Classic was originally scheduled to be played at Target Field in Minneapolis between the host Minnesota Wild and the St. Louis Blues. it has been rescheduled for New Year’s Day, 2022.

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