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Rink taking shape

by Dan Rosen /
PITTSBURGH -- This is how well things are going here at Heinz Field:

Dan Craig sent his overnight crew back to the hotel at 2 o'clock this morning because they were so far ahead of schedule that he figured he could give them a normal night of sleep and have them back here by lunch.

Craig told me he's got about a half an inch of ice built already, so he's a third of the way to his mark before he brings out the white paint. He's planning on building an inch between now and Monday afternoon before painting white and getting in some lines and logos when that paint dries.

Craig will be doing an on-camera report for us later this afternoon, so make sure to look for that.

The leading man here is in a giddy mood today not only because of the way things are progressing on the ice, but his son, Mike Craig, is due to arrive tonight and join the crew for an overnight shift. Mike, who lives in British Columbia, has worked with his dad on all of the Winter Classics as well as three Olympics and several other events.

Off the ice there is still plenty going on here. I was just outside and could see what had to be close to 100 people in the stands place seat cushions on the seats here. The player benches are in place and right now they're laying out the armor decking in order to build erect the stage that will house the penalty boxes and scorers box.

Several members of the NHL family are expected to arrive today (provided they can get here due to the anticipated blizzard in New York), so the select few of us that have been here since Thursday are about to get some much-needed company from our close friends, including's own Shawn P. Roarke.

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl
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