With all the hype surrounding historic Fenway Park, the NHL lived up to the monster hype – and Fenway Parked delivered all it was supposed to be and more.
A fitting touch was the addition of honorary team captains Bobby Orr and Bobby Clarke. What would have been more awe inspiring and motivational for the fans was if they would have let them just walk out with the teams and skate the ice with them instead of by themselves.
Each Winter Classic has been special, Buffalo vs. Pittsburgh was the first; Chicage and Detroit was a goal-scoring affair for the enjoyment of the fan. Boston and Philadelphia was probably the most intense game played on New Years Day.
With each Winter Classic that has gone by – the game is missing something. While the NHL capitalizes on historic baseball parks, the record breaking crowds at Ralph Wilson Stadium will never be reached. The chill of watching the game has worn off – it now seems common place that there will be an outdoor game on New Years – and having fans right up on the glass pounding and making noise in key moments is something that is almost as part of the game as hitting and scoring.
Kudos to Boston and the NHL for putting on a great show – and thanks Philadelphia and Boston for a hell of a game.
Tags: Bobby Clarke Bobby Orr Boston Bruins Buffalo Sabres Chicago Blackhawks Detroit Red Wings Hockey NHL Outdoor Philadelphia Flyers Pittsburgh Penguins Rivalry Stanley Cup Stanley Cup Playoffs Winter Classic