Big Lead Sports Bar

3/28/2010

BURGH WINTER CLASSIC PUSH CONTINUES



A sight like this at Heinz Field could be a reality in 2011, thanks to a continued push from the Penguins to host the NHL's annual New Year's Day showcase.

A report on Sunday said that Pittsburgh city officials are pushing hard for the city to be chosen as the host, and that the Steelers are amenable to playing the game at Heinz Field, even though it would require some tweaking to their end-of-the-season schedule. The Steelers could not play home games on the final two Sundays of the regular season so that the ice surface could be constructed, meaning they would likely play a Thursday night home game on December 23.

PNC Park sounds like it has been ruled out as a destination for the game, due to its capacity of 38,496, which is far below Heinz Field's 65,050 and would therefore limit the amount of revenue that could be generated. Of course, I'm not sure officials have taken into consideration how many of PNC Park's $8 beers would be sold on that day to cover the difference, but that's their loss.

The Pens' opponent for the '11 Classic would likely be the Washington Capitals, giving Sidney Crosby another prominent stage in which to top Alex Ovechkin, with the Stanley Cup Playoffs and Olympics having already been crossed off that list. Caps coach Bruce Boudreau would rather see the game be played in the D.C. area, and to show Boudreau's stroke with the league, the game will still likely be played in Pittsburgh.

Yes, I'm a little weary of the Ovechkin/Crosby/Malkin storyline being beaten solidly into the ground by the league, but I must admit, I'd be a total hypocrite and be the first in line for tickets if this game became a reality.

Report: Pens want Caps at Heinz Field [ESPN]

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5 comments:

jmarinara said...

I really hope they don't wear the blue jersey's again. Either wear the regular home jersey's or bust out the '91-'92 jersey's as the alternates.

As for Crosby v. Ovie . . . what other story line does the NHL have to push? Besides team rivalries, and even some of those are a stretch (Pens vs. Leafs? Sharks vs. Stars? spare us), they don't really have anything else.

The NHL is missing a golden opportunity to visually stun people with the PNC park view. And I frankly don't believe them about the capacity thing. They just had games in Fenway and Wrigley for goodness sake. Three possibilities 1) MLB said no because they aren't ready for PNC to be put at the same level of prestige as the "hallowed" Fenway and Wrigley. (unlikely) 2) NHL said no because they don't want to be associated with the Pirates (possible) 3) The Pirates said no because they're worried about their precious turf. (likely)

All of that said, this is another feather in the cap of Pittsburgh. Go Pens.

Jonny Van Mundegaarde said...

I've heard that this is indeed the last year of the blue third jerseys.

okel dokel said...

Supposedly the fact that Heinz Field holds 65,000 is the reason for the game being held there.

Steve said...

Hmmm, you think Mario had anything to do with this? The Pirates were pushing for the game but maybe the Pens aren't exactly happy with them right now and I doubt would help them accomplish anything beneficial. Suck on that Nutting. I would honestly be happier if they just opened the roof to the old igloo and played the game there on a snowy winter day instead of involving anything that has to do with the Pirates. F that embarrasment and the ship they sailed in on and if we concentrate real hard maybe they'll go away all together.

Besides, you'll be able to fit closer to 75,000 - 80,000 into Heinz for a hockey game and never get close to even 50,000 into PNC. Fact is; The NHL could care less about "stunning" people with a view of Pittsburgh if they could make more coin.

Maxwell.C said...

I'm not surprised many of you took this opportunity to bash the Pirates, but conspiracy theories aside, this comes down to tickets and capacity. Not to mention that Heinz can provide it's own view of the city (not nearly as good as PNC, but a view of the Point nonetheless).

Don, I think you got mixed up when stating the Pirates charge $8 a beer. That's more like Heinz and Mellon, while PNC actually has the cheapest beers in MLB ($0.23 per oz.). There's plenty of ways to take pot shots at the Buccos but unfortunately, beer prices are not one of them.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203440104574400704055332382.html