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Travis

2012 Winter Classic, Jan 2.

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That the first and fourth NHL Winter Classics were more entertaining than the second and third is either a tribute to the Sidney Crosby(notes) or the virtues of outdoor hockey inside NFL stadia.

According to Darren Dreger of TSN, neither will be a factor for the 2012 Winter Classic, as it appears like the Philadelphia Flyers will host the New York Rangers — but not in the home of the Eagles:

The NHL hasn't officially signed off on the location, largely because of building availability in Philadelphia. The NHL would love to host the outdoor game at Lincoln Financial Field, but the NFL's schedule is making the football stadium virtually impossible, so Citizens Bank Park, the home of the Philadelphia Phillies, will likely be the venue of choice.

Nothing official yet from the League or the participants. Like Leahy wrote last month, The Linc was out because of the NFL schedule — assuming they actually have a season — and the necessary time the NHL needs to prep for the event.

Dreger mentions the joy of watching John Tortorella on "HBO 24/7", and that'd be an undeniable benefit to this matchup. (As would the Best Supporting Actor Emmy nomination with Larry Brooks' name on it.)

But does this Classic do it for you?

The downers for this matchup, besides seeing the Flyers for the second time in three years, are the sexier options we've all imagined for both teams. Flyers vs. Pittsburgh Penguins at Penn State. Rangers vs. fill-in-the-blank at Yankee Stadium. Instead, it's Eastern Conference (again) teams from the Northeast (again) in a venue that's second to the football stadium next door in desirability.

But hey, it's New York vs. Philly — it's going to be a good time.

LINK.

It was also just reported in SportsCenter.

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How was the Detroit-Chicago one less entertaining than one and four? I barely remember this year.

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How was the Detroit-Chicago one less entertaining than one and four? I barely remember this year.

Right? I feel like sometimes people just know it was supposed to be exciting so they say it was. It was a slushy mess of a game that they continually tried to inject excitement into.

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Really? The Flyers again? The Winter Classic is 4 years old and we are already back-to-back repeat teams? Guess I'm not surprised that the NHL is incompetent.

Jasper84 and WMUsiv1 like this

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Better options than going back to an already used team: Boston-Montreal. Rangers-Toronto. Heck, let's drawn a western team in: Colorado-Dallas, both of which have pretty large TV audiences, I believe.

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Uh, 4 out of the 5 total Winter Classics have involved either the Flyers or Penguins. It must be something about ratings...some numbers crap that only Bettman cares about...wow how boring, probably won't even watch it. Does this league have 30 teams or 5?

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Ugh. So typical.

BTW This year's Winter Classic SUCKED. 24/7 was cool but the actual game was boring as hell other than the Malkin goal.

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I really would argue for Montreal or Toronto getting it, but it seems that they'll just have a separate one every year ("Heritage Classic") as no one in the US is going to watch a Canadian team and they will make tons of money off of it in Canada anyways.

I also initially don't really like the same teams getting it year after year. I don't know, seems like it could be one of those things like the Thanksgiving Day games in the NFL. I can't really make up my mind actually. Kind of really do find it lame that twice there's been teams that have already played.

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I'll be skipping this years game too.

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For me, the Winter Classic is all about the weather. Game 1 had a blizzard and Game 4 had the high temps and melted ice - that made those games unique and different -- worth watching regardless of which teams were playing. If the weather is perfect and ice is perfect, then it is just another game -- not nearly as interesting. If it doesn't have the Wings, it better have some ugly weather conditions.

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The thing I don't understand is if this is all about ratings, why don't they just pit the #1 and #2 teams in market share against each other each and every year?

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You guys are missing the big picture. Comcast just bought NBC. Winter Classic is on NBC. Now comes the tricky part, who owns the flyers????!

zata40 likes this

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I like the matchup personally the rangers are a good pick anyway, maybe could've been Toronto or something to give a Canadian team a chance, but philly is good too. I think people on here just like to complain.. I mean Colorado vs. Dallas?, I don't think that would quite draw the viewership that the nhl is looking for. Ratings/ money will always win out over fairness .

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Lame.

Rangers/Devils or Rangers/Isles would have been much more interesting. Not to mention the already-mentioned fact of teams being repeated already. With Philly and Pittsburgh getting them like this, it truly should just be called the Pennsylvania Outdoor Classic. <_<

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Lol. Not that we should talk, but last I checked, the Rangers limped into the playoffs and got beat in 5 in round 1, and the Flyers got railed by Boston in 4 after struggling with the 7th seeded Sabres in 7 games.

But yeah, let's go with two Eastern Conference teams again, one of which just had a WC two years ago...

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The downers for this matchup, besides seeing the Flyers for the second time in three years, are the sexier options we've all imagined for both teams. Flyers vs. Pittsburgh Penguins at Penn State.

Hahahaha, I know what they're getting at - that they would've wanted a Battle of PA match-up if both teams hadn't already had turns - but the funny part is that it sounds like something the NHL would do despite their past appearances.

Blah. I care about this one even less than last year's. And what the heck is the point of putting in the Rangers if you're not going to have it at Yankee Stadium? That's pretty much the ONLY reason to have the Rangers in a WC at all - the location! Of course, it's not the same ol' Yankee Stadium anyway, but still, at least you've got a semblance of tradition there. Why not save them until you can get the date you want at the place you want? It's not like they're having some kind of surge in popularity that makes it necessary for them to be in it this year.

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Bettman hates Canada (Winnipeg anyone?) and won't have a Toronto vs Detroit or New York vs Montreal game.

Has nothing to do with Bettman as Canada has their very own outdoor game and they won't navigate outside of that. I have no problem with it being this way as Canada seems to sort of shield themselves off from this kind of thing. All that said, I'd love a Toronto vs. Detroit classic in Detroit or Michigan Stadium.

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Why January 2nd?

Very confusing to me... What if the NFL is still striking too?

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You guys are missing the big picture. Comcast just bought NBC. Winter Classic is on NBC. Now comes the tricky part, who owns the flyers????!

Bingo! At the very least it is shady.

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