Chicago Blackhawks forward Dennis Rasmussen kept a diary of his experiences at the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. The Blackhawks lost to the St. Louis Blues 4-1 on Monday in the 21st outdoor regular-season game and the third of four this season.
In his final installment, Rasmussen talks about how excited he was to play in the game, his mindset heading into the game amid the uncertainty on the weather and the bitter disappointment of losing.
The day had a lot of excitement before the game. You're more pumped than usual. You're taking warmups without a helmet and you're just cruising around there, it brings back some memories.
It's a fun event. I thought it was even more special than when I played my first outdoor game at the Stadium Series in Minnesota last year. I don't know if it was the atmosphere here or what it was.
I know a lot of people were worried about the weather today, but I didn't really think about that. I knew it was going to be a little bit of rain at least, and if we played later it probably would be the same. So I was ready for it and kind of had a mindset going into the game that I was going to play simple and chip a lot of pucks, because I felt that would be the most effective game today.
I think we started the game really well, we had a lot of zone time and were playing really good. We had more scoring chances than they did early on in the game.
Then, when Patrik Berglund scored their first goal in the second period, I don't know if we were sitting back a little bit but they took over a little bit and scored on their chances. We didn't.
We've lost a few games lately and obviously we have to start playing a little bit better. I thought our starts the last couple of games have been bad, but our start today was way better than it was before.
I wouldn't say we're frustrated, but you go into the game with the mindset to try to win every game, and that's what we have to do going forward.
We have to play desperate and try to get the next win.
But I'm really disappointed right now. It was such a big game, and you lose it.
It would have been really fun and really cool to win it.