Due to the strong success of its annual Winter Classic outdoor games the National Hockey League has decided to expand the number of outdoor games during the upcoming season. One of the most fascinating matchups will be a Dodger Stadium game between the Los Angeles Kings and the Anaheim Ducks. The game, set for January 25, 2014 will be part of a larger two-week celebration of hockey at Dodgers Stadium. The six outdoor games scheduled, in addition to the annual Winter Classic, will be part of the larger Hockey Day in America event.
When the rumors first circulated that Dodger Stadium would feature a game star Kings defenseman Drew Doughy was initially skeptical of how the LA climate would be able to support an outdoor ice surface.
According to Doughty, via LA Kings Insider:
“I don’t understand how that would work,” Doughty told reporters. “Isn’t it too hot?
According to experts the NHL will utilize technology first used during an outdoor game in Las Vegas. The Kings also played in the Vegas game in 1991 and despite temperatures that reached 85 degrees the ice held up. The game will be played at night to mitigate temperature issues. Over the past several years the league has perfected the technology behind their portable refrigeration equipment they use for the outdoor games. The average nightly low for January 25th in LA is 49 degrees so ice conditions should not be much of an issue. The game will be played prior to the NHL going on break for the Winter Olympics, so LA hockey fans will be treated to the rivalry game with all the top stars like Jonathon Quick, Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Doughty.
The game at Dodger Stadium will be followed by a handful of additional matchups across the country over the following month, including two games at Yankee Stadium and a very compelling Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Chicago Blackhawks game at Soldier Field in Chicago. The two Yankee Stadium games will feature New York based teams during the week leading up to next year’s Super Bowl. The game at Dodger Stadium will reportedly be able to seat as many as 70,000 people and should be one of the hottest tickets in town for local fans of hockey, as well as hockey fans traveling in from around the country.
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