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NHL to hold three outdoor games in 2019-20; All-Star Weekend in St. Louis

Flames, Jets to play in Saskatchewan; Cotton Bowl Stadium hosts Winter Classic; U.S. Air Force Academy gets Stadium Series @NHLdotcom

The Calgary Flames and Winnipeg Jets begin a slate of three regular-season outdoor NHL games in 2019-20 when the 2019 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic returns to the schedule Oct. 26.

The four events for the 2019-20 season were announced by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman during the second intermission of the 2019 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Notre Dame Stadium.

In addition to the Heritage Classic, Commissioner Bettman announced the Dallas Stars will host the 2020 Winter Classic at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas on Jan. 1, the 2020 NHL All-Star Weekend will be at Enterprise Center in St. Louis on Jan. 24-26 and the Colorado Avalanche will host the NHL Stadium Series game at the United States Air Force Academy's Falcon Stadium in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on Feb. 15.

The Flames and Jets will play at Mosaic Stadium in Regina, Saskatchewan, in the fifth NHL Heritage Classic and first since 2016, when the Edmonton Oilers defeated the Jets 3-0 at Investors Group Field in Winnipeg on Oct. 23. The Flames defeated the Montreal Canadiens 4-0 in the second Heritage Classic at McMahon Stadium in Calgary on Feb. 20, 2011.

Video: BOS@CHI: Bettman on growth, future outdoor events

The inaugural Heritage Classic, and the first NHL regular-season game to be played outdoors, was at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton on Nov. 22, 2003, when the Canadiens defeated the Oilers 4-3.

"There's been a great deal of interest in the Regina market over the years," Commissioner Bettman said, "and they have very much wanted to host a game."

St. Louis will host its third NHL All-Star Game (1970, 1988 at St. Louis Arena) and first at Enterprise Center, home of the St. Louis Blues. NHL All-Star Weekend will include the All-Star Skills competition along with hockey-themed events, entertainment and activities.

"St. Louis was a great host for us for the Winter Classic we recently had there (2017 at Busch Stadium), and in the final analysis, the total circumstances, including the substantial renovation that they've done of Enterprise Center made it the right time to go back," Commissioner Bettman said. "We have no doubt it will be a huge success."

The 2020 Winter Classic will be the first outdoor game for the Stars.  

"Growing up, January 1st was a big day because it was the Cotton Bowl, the Rose Bowl and the Orange Bowl. And I loved the Cotton Bowl," NHL executive vice president and chief content officer Steve Mayer said. "So how do we thematically bring the Cotton Bowl back to January 1st? These are the kind of things that we'll do to honor that great stadium and what we think is one of the great sports traditions."

This will be the second time the Avalanche host a Stadium Series. The Avalanche lost 5-3 to the Detroit Red Wings at Coors Field in Denver on Feb. 27, 2016. It's also the second time the NHL has brought a regular-season outdoor game to a U.S. service academy. The Washington Capitals defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-2 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, on March 3, 2018.

"Dallas is a place that's known for their big events, and we experienced it first hand when we came last summer with the NHL Draft. Got an opportunity to work with the Stars organization. Got an opportunity to work with the Dallas Sports Commission. The event went so, so well.

Commissioner Bettman said the opponents for the Stars and Avalanche would be determined in the next few weeks, but said it's unlikely the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks, who played Tuesday, would be involved.

"I don't think as general matter, you use a team two years in a row," Commissioner Bettman said.

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