2016 Winter Classic To Be Played At Gillette Stadium

Tom Kelly, Writer

This past Saturday, National Hockey League commissioner Gary Bettman announced the full slate of outdoor games to be played in 2016.  In total, he announced three games, but the most significant was the announcement that the 2016 Winter Classic will be the Boston Bruins playing against their hated rivals the Montreal Canadiens at Gillette Stadium.

The Bruins will become the first team in the classic’s short, less than a decade-old history to host the spectacle twice.  The first of course being in 2010 when the Bruins hosted the Philadelphia Flyers at Fenway Park.  The story is completely different on the other side as the Habs have never played in a Winter Classic.  They have only played in the Heritage Classic, which is an outdoor game played in Canada by only Canadian teams.

During his press conference on Saturday, Bettman glorified the two teams and rivalry by saying “Those two teams (The Bruins and Canadiens) have played each other more than they’ve played any other opponents in their respective history, the renewal of the rivalry on New Years Day should be memorable.”

“Memorable” Bettman?  How does epic, intense, amazing, and just plain awesome sound?  As you probably guessed, I’m in in favor of this news and just flat out excited that the classic is coming back to New England.  The game at Fenway Park against the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010 was a great experience being both fun to watch and intense. (Given the fact that there was a big two points on the line)  Also the fact that the Bruins won the game 2-1 in overtime off a Marco Sturm goal made it great experience too.  So, take all the positive qualities of the game in 2010 (Exciting, intense, fun to watch, etc) and add the most storied and hate-filled rivalry in the history of North American Professional sports.  Then the question becomes, how could you not be excited?

Just a couple more things…

The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens have played each other 900 times in their history, including 34 playoff series in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  Montreal has won 25 of those, including last year’s second round upset against the bruins. (That nearly killed me)  It seems only fitting to take this historic rivalry to the one place it hasn’t gone: outside.

Are you excited for the 2016 Winter Classic?


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