Earlier in the year, the NHL announced that the Washington Capitals will face off against the Chicago Blackhawks at a place to be determined in the Washington D.C. area for the start of the 2015 Stadium Series. With a couple of choices on the table it is still undetermined which site will be the best to host a hockey game. Weather shouldn’t be an issue in January, so taking that into account won’t matter.
The stadium series kicked off a couple of years ago, when the Buffalo Sabres hosted the Pittsburgh Penguins in a game that took place in Ralph Wilson Stadium, home of the Buffalo Bills. In recent years, the Stadium Series games has been featured in such places as the new Yankee Stadium, Boston’s Fenway Park, Wrigley Field and at Dodger Stadium, last year.
This will be the second year that a game will also be held in California. Last year the Anaheim Ducks beat the L.A. Kings 3-0 at Dodger Stadium. This year the league has announced that a second game will be played in the stadium series and will take place at the new San Fransisco 49ers stadium, Levi Stadium that is being built in Santa Clara. The game will take place on February 21st of next year. The game will feature the L.A. Kings against the San Jose Sharks.
With an influx of stadium series games, is the NHL using their somewhat new approach to bring in fans and money, being overused? Having the same teams year in and year out that are constantly on national TV a good approach as well. Yes it is hockey outdoors. I am looking at the long term possibilities to bring in more fans and money rather than use up the resources and commodity level early and have nothing later.
Keep the stadium series and move it to 2 games a year, one being the East and one being the West. Pick two teams on a rotating basis with a minimum year set in between before either one of those teams can play in it again. Keep it as a rivalry set series. This is a way that all teams and fans get to experience the game and the excitement. I don’t want to see the Pittsburgh Penguins or the Boston Bruins playing in games back to back to back each and every year, especially if the Caps are not and I am sure it goes for every other fan who supports their team. This provides options for everyone. It is hockey outdoors, the fans will come.