Saturday, June 11, 2011

Why One Outdoor Game Isn't That Bad

According to Pierre LeBrun of ESPN, there won't be a Heritage Classic for the 2011-12 season. Of course, the Heritage is the Canadian version of the Winter Classic; but in the grand scheme-- it's not the worst idea out there.

Last year, there was numerous amounts of outdoor games, which some take in stride-- but to someone like me, it seemed like a bit of overkill. I enjoy the gimmick of the outdoor hockey game and having been to one-- it's like nothing I've ever experienced. But at the same time, you have a limited amount of places to hold it; and the places you do hold it at sometimes don't have the best conditions-- even in winter.

Then you move to the Heritage Classic, which usually has two Canadian teams in it. There's only seven teams in Canada. Your pool is increasingly more shallow, and while you'll have the turnout all the time....seeing the same place over and over again for an outdoor game could lose it's luster. It's the same reason people hate seeing the same teams in the event every year, despite them making the ratings on TV jump.

It's not an entirely bad thing because you won't saturate the ideal of the game, while also increasing the hype and the push for the Heritage Classic to come back to the Canadian market. It was eight years from one Heritage Classic to another, so they can sustain the love for the outdoor game regardless of the time frame. It's instilled in the nature and really puts more of the spotlight on the Winter Classic, as it would be the only chance for the NHL to take it outdoors.

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