This year's Winter Classic game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Buffalo Sabres was just amazing. Nothing optimized hockey more than a stadium full of hockey fans watching two teams play in a light snowstorm.
To top that, there was even overtime and a shootout—and who else but the face of the NHL, Sidney Crosby, sneaking the puck through the five-hole past Ryan Miller.
The NHL has already decided who and where the next Winter Classic game will feature. Now there are rumors going around that the 2010 Winter Classic will take place in the new Yankee Stadium.
But since that has not been finalized, let me say these two teams are perfect to play each other—Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.
These two teams hate one another. On top of this, the fans hate one another also.
I hate Philadelphia sports teams and players with a passion. I was raised in western Pennsylvania, and was brought up in the colors of Black and Gold, not orange and black, or green and white, or even red and white. Be a real city, Philly and have your teams match!
No way in any circumstance will I pull for a Philadelphia team or player—no matter what. There are a lot of people on both sides of the state that will agree with me on this one as well.
Now, for the venue—Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. What would be more amazing to see than a stadium filled with 108,000 people screaming and yelling—not for a college team, but for a state's bragging rights in ice hockey. Throw some snow flurries in there, and some shirtless drunk people, and you have yourself a great day of hockey.
On top of all of this, look at the implications of this game. Philadelphia and Pittsburgh will be both vying for a top spot on the Eastern Conference this upcoming season, which could turn this game into a very important contest for both of them.
Along with this, you have both sides of the state coming together almost in the middle of Pennsylvania to play this game. It would feel like a battle, with both armies are meeting in the middle to fight.
Just thinking about this game—even if it never happens—still gets me excited. It is just the perfect game, and the perfect location for these two teams to come together and play. Just like last year's Winter Classic, I am willing to bet that this one would not disappoint either.