The 2009-2010 NHL season will begin just as it did last year in Stockholm, Sweden, at the Ericsson Globe Arena when the Detroit Red Wings
and St. Louis Blues
face off October 2-3. Tickets to both games, about 26,000 total, have sold out.
The Blues and Red Wings will begin their visit to Sweden with exhibition games as part of the NHL Premiere Challenge. St. Louis will face Linköping Hockey Club on September 29 and Detroit will play Färjestad BK on September 30. Tickets for both games will be released tomorrow, Tuesday, March 31.
There are Swedish players on both teams. Patrik Berglund
(Västerås) and Alexander Steen
(Frölunda) play for St. Louis, and Jonas Junlund, a prospect currently playing for Linköping, could be skating for the Blues by the start of the 2009-10 season. Henrik Zetterberg
(Timrå), Nicklas Lidström (Västerås) and Niklas Kronwall
(Djurgården) are amongst the Swedes that skate for Detroit.
"Two of the best Swedish teams will challenge the mythical NHL teams. It was an easy choice to place the games in Linköping and Karlstad," says Thomas Johansson of Live Nation.
"This is for real! Something that would have been an unobtainable dream 15 years ago has become a reality. It is a dream come true to have one of the best NHL teams playing in Linköping. The audience will have one of the best times seeing our own team challenge Detroit," says Mike Helber, Director of Linköpings Hockey Club.
"This is a unique opportunity for us to meet one of the world’s best hockey teams. It will create a huge hockey feeling and party in Karlstad," says Håkan Loob, Director of Färjestad BK.
The games are being presented via cooperation between the NHL, Live Nation, IMG, Färjestad BK and Linköpings Hockey Club.
GAMES IN SWEDEN
Linköping, Cloetta Center
Tuesday, September 29, Linköpings HC vs. St. Louis Blues
Karlstad, Löfbergs Lila Arena
Wednesday, September 30, Färjestads BK vs. Detroit Red Wings
Stockholm, Ericsson Globe
Game 1: Friday, October 2, Detroit Red Wings
vs. St. Louis Blues
Game 2: Saturday, October 3, St. Louis Blues
vs. Detroit Red Wings