Looks like that Rangers-Flyers Winter Classic will happen


… on Jan. 2. at Citizen’s Bank Park.

Here is the story from my friend Chuck Gormley at the Camden Courier-Post:

Courier-Post Staff
Are you ready to sing “Take me out to the hockey game?”
The 2012 NHL Winter Classic is coming to Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia and is expected to match the Flyers against the New York Rangers, the Courier-Post learned late Thursday night.
The game is expected to be played on Monday, Jan. 2 and highlight a week of hockey activity that will include high school and college hockey games on the infield of the Phillies’ seven-year-old ballpark.
An announcement confirming Philadelphia as the site of next season’s Winter Classic is still weeks away but Flyers president Peter Luukko has been working with the NHL for years to land the midseason classic and said he believes it would be the perfect climax to New Year”s Day weekend.
“If we are chosen to host the NHL Winter Classic, with our fans and the excitement of New Year’s Eve, the atmosphere would be fabulous,” Luukko said. “It would be good for the city and good for the region if we”re lucky enough to host.”
The NHL was hoping to have the Flyers face the Rangers at 68,532-seat Lincoln Financial Field on Jan. 1, but the Eagles are hosting the Washington Redskins at 1 p.m. that day in their regular season finale.
According to an NHL source, Phillies president David Montgomery has given the league permission to construct a hockey rink on the infield of Citizens Bank Park, which seats 43,500 fans.
The Rangers are the only Original Six team from the NHL that has not participated in a Winter Classic, which has been a resounding success for the NHL since its inception in 2008.
The Rangers have lobbied to host a Winter Classic at Yankee Stadium, but college football’s annual Pinstripe Bowl is scheduled to be played there on each of the next four New Year’s Days.
It has not yet been determined whether the 2012 Winter Classic will take place during the afternoon or at night, but for the second straight year it will be accompanied by HBO”s 24/7, a weekly television special that takes cameras into the locker rooms, hotel rooms and private lives of the teams” players and coaches.
That would be a treat for NHL fans hoping to get a closer look at the boisterous and often profane coach of the Rangers, John Tortorella.
During the season, the Courier-Post asked Flyers coach Peter Laviolette his opinions on being involved in a second Winter Classic.
“Whatever is asked, I’d be up for, because it was a great event,” he said. “There was nothing that was bad about it, and if the talk of one was to come here and certain things have to be done, sign me up.”
Truth be told Laviolette would rather not be followed around by cameras, but would be willing to sacrifice some privacy for the excitement of hosting a Winter Classic.
“I would rather avoid a camera than jump in front of one,” Laviolette said. “But I can tell you this — man, I love that Winter Classic, and I sure would love to play in another one. For me that trumps all “ even my own queasiness.”
In the inaugural Classic, the Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Buffalo Sabres on a shootout goal by Sidney Crosby in snowy Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, N.Y. A record crowd of 71,217 fans witnessed that game.
The 2009 Winter Classic featured the Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks in Wrigley Field and drew the highest American television rating for an NHL game in 33 years.
The Flyers and Boston Bruins participated in the third Winter Classic in 2010 in Fenway Park, with the Bruins winning 2-1 in overtime. Last year, heavy rains postponed the Winter Classic until 8 p.m. and the showdown between Sidney Crosby and the Penguins and Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals was the most-watched Classic.

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  1. I have no problem with calling a guy overrated. But to call a guy gutless, like Marleau, is beyond stupidity. Stick to calling cheap shot artists like Cooke and Carcillo gutless. Not Marleau. Gutless Marleau with the Game 7 winner.

    YES!!!! Last year’s 3-0 collapse remains!!!!

  2. Good for San Jose. However, I don’t see them moving past Vancouver. They seem to get shaken so easily. Vancouver, while symptomatic in the first series, seemed to get past that.

  3. so, we’re finally going to be featured.
    kinda feel bad for
    Torts whose probably kicking things with his
    good leg
    when he realizes that he’ll be part of the
    24/7 show

  4. JimboWoodside on

    Ah, well – they tried……I have lots of respect for that Detroit team. They always come to play the game.

  5. but Jimbo
    how could detroit be any good
    when they have all those European players?

    (some people are idiots!)

  6. JimboWoodside on

    I like the way that the Detroit team does things – and they’ve kept their team *very* good for a long, long time now.

    It seems like the Wings always get great players, European or not! Look at Datsyuk – I only wish we could get a hold of a player like him.

  7. JimboWoodside on

    On another topic, just my two cents, but I have very little enthusiasm for a “Winter Classic” game as the visiting team – the game should be in *NEW YORK CITY*, not Philly…..we’re the Big Apple, they are the worms….

  8. Bill from Jersey on

    All I have to say is that Citizen’s Bank is a nice ballpark. Been there to see a Phillies game, and I don’t mind having to trek over the Walt Whitman to go see the Rangers in the Classic.

  9. that was just a fantastic game. kudos to both teams. have a feeling this was Lidstrom’s last game in the NHL. if it was, what a career. Pavel Datsyuk is insane. best player in the NHL. that shot was just sick. also i dont know what San Jose’s coach was telling each Red Wing player during the handshakes, but each conversation was relatively long, and for me, that’s class, and just good to see. fantastic series, i just wish NYR will reach this level sometime soon.

  10. Lev
    heard that sharks coach was a red wings assistant
    so there’s a history with players there.

  11. Red Wing Shark 3rd period was about the best hockey I’ve seen. Doc was right. Should be the best 5 of 9 games

  12. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " FOURR !!!"...says Greg L. on

    Ahhh Finally a winter classic im looking forward too. Its a historic game for us for sure. Rangers first ever “out side” game. Well back in the ’20’s ( the 1920’s) the Rangers probally did play a few games outside . But they never had camera back then so we really dont know . Google wasn’t invented yet…

  13. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Hey Jimbo – If “We are the big apple, they are the worms,” how come the worms got the game? Better marketing, better management lobby team, more pull with Buttman, what? What’s your excuse? (Besides whining about it.)

  14. JimboWoodside on

    Comcast owns the Flyers, owns Versus, and owns the NBC Network – what do you think swayed the NHL’s decision? If Dolan owned all those properties, they would be dancing to his tune.

  15. Where will the Philly ‘Sign Man’ post up all of his obnoxious signs? Maybe Avery and he can duel it out at competing goal seats. Insert Here ….

  16. Carp, I recorded all the games from the 94’ Cup run and I replayed that Game 7 goal by Mess over-and-over again and I will emphatically state that it was Adam Graves’ goal!!! Quick story; took my 6 year old daughter to Cronies to meet Gravy & donate to Toy For Tots. So, we sit down next to him and he’s all talkative and nice to me & my daughter. She loved him even though she was only 6. But I couldn’t help myself and said to him, “You know you scored that Cup winning goal, not Mess.” He ended our time together and said, “Next”. If looks could kill, I’d be a dead man!! True story.

  17. JimboWoodside on

    The Rangers actually played an outdoor exhibition game in 1991, against the LA Kings, in Las Vegas, of all places, and the Kings won, 5-2.

  18. Carp, in the previous thread you said no Yankee stadium? Why? Are the Yankees against it? I still don’t think Citi Field is a bad option. True, it’s not really NYC, but it’s easy access to all train lines and just a short distance(relatively) away from the city. Besides, I bet even a diehard Yankee fan would rather watch the Rangers at Citi Field than go to that cesspool on the butt-end of Pennsylvania.

    I do get your point about markets though. What a shame.

  19. Yankee Stadium is a no-go because of the Pinstripe Bowl. The NHL needs about a week or so lead time to get the rink built and perfected. The college football bowl game doesn’t give the NHL enough time.

    I know it would probably be a logistical nightmare, but how about Central Park? They lose out on attendance with temporary stands, but you would be in one of the most iconic settings in Midtown Manhattan – a Mystery, Alaska right in the middle of the Big Apple!

  20. Can anyone recommend a bar in/around Flushing that will be showing tomorrow night’s Lightning-Bruins game?

  21. “The Rangers are the only Original Six team from the NHL that has not participated in a Winter Classic, which has been a resounding success for the NHL since its inception in 2008.”
    Not exactly – no game with Leafs and Canadians as of yet.

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