The conclusion of the outdoor run of games is upon us with the New York Rangers taking on the New York Islanders tonight at historic Yankee Stadium. So tonight for the sake of the Islanders fans who didn’t watch yesterday we get to hear all the same drawn out stories about Yankee Stadium and the history of the Yankees and the Bronx ball park.
With many reports, primarily coming out of New York about poor ice conditions, is it time the National Hockey League packs up its plans for the out door games – or is it something that teams just need to prepare and be ready for?
In 2008 when this started in Buffalo it was an annual event, two teams got to skate out doors in a novelty affair showcasing retro jerseys and playing a game that has meaning in the standings out doors in the elements like back when they were kids. This year we had a Winter Classic, three Stadium Series games and a Heritage Classic.
With the lockout eating up money last year – you knew the NHL would do something this year to increase their revenue streams, and what better way to do it then filling four games with 50,000 plus fans and having the ability to sell nine new jerseys at 300+ dollars a pop. I think it is safe to say the league made up for all the lost revenue from the last lockout and then some with the Stadium Series.
With reports of bad ice in New York and the novelty officially warn off the game – should the NHL continue the Stadium Series, revert back to just the Winter and Heritage Classics – or scrap the idea of outdoor games all together after Washington gets their chance next year?
Just like the shootout and hybrid icing, this is one gimmick that will likely stand the test of time in the NHL.