NEW YORK (July 16, 2008) – The Chicago Blackhawks will host the Detroit Red Wings at Wrigley Field in NHL Winter Classic 2009 on New Year’s Day. The 701st all-time meeting of the clubs – no NHL opponents have played more regular-season games against each other – will begin at the memorably unique venue at 1 p.m., ET/Noon CT.
NHL Winter Classic 2009 will be the second regular-season outdoor NHL game played in the United States (the Buffalo Sabres hosted the Pittsburgh Penguins at Ralph Wilson Stadium last New Year’s Day) and the third regular-season outdoor game in League history (the Edmonton Oilers hosted the Montreal Canadiens at Commonwealth Stadium Nov. 22, 2003). Several of the game’s brightest stars will be on display, including the young Blackhawks tandem of Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews and new addition All-Star defenseman Brian Campbell. The Stanley Cup champion Red Wings boast an All-Star roster that includes Henrik Zetterberg, Nicklas Lidstrom, Pavel Datsyuk, Chris Osgood and newly acquired Marian Hossa.
"The NHL is delighted to bring its most historic rivalry to one of the most historic venues in
sports," said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. "We thank Rocky Wirtz and John McDonough for their vision. We thank Mike Ilitch and the Red Wings for their cooperation. And we thank Mayor Daley, in advance, for the warm welcome we know the City of Chicago will extend to our newest tradition.
“We also acknowledge the interest and efforts of the New York Yankees and the City of New York throughout the NHL Winter Classic 2009 site selection process,” Commissioner Bettman said. “We look forward to continuing discussions regarding the possibility of playing a future Winter Classic game at the new Yankee Stadium."
NBC will provide live broadcast coverage of the game in the U.S. In Canada, CBC and RDS will televise the event live. NHL Radio will provide coverage for radio stations across North America and XM Satellite Radio, and NHL.com will provide extensive digital video coverage. More detail on the Winter Classic will be announced soon.