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Would it be possible to have a Winter Classic in Raleigh?

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08-04-2012, 01:08 PM
  #1
Carolinas Identity
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Would it be possible to have a Winter Classic in Raleigh?

Something I've always wondered.

It's routinley below freezing in December and January, tho not usually by a lot. Carter-Finley seats almost 58,000 and I don't think the ice thing would be too much of an issue. There's always stretches in the 20's and we do average 6 inches of snow a year and freezing rain and sleet are not uncommon, plus we we do have the technology if all else fails.

I know the Winter Classic is supposed to be a Northern thing, but I think this could be an interesting idea for the league.

2015, NHL Winter Classic: Predators @ Hurricanes. 58,000 people crowding Carter-Finley on a 20 degree day with light snowfall. They could do it up college style and have half the stadium Crimson and Black, and the other half Navy and Gold. I think that'd as good a draw, if not better than the All-Star game. And what better way to for the league to proove hockey is working in the south, than a sold out football stadium turned into a hockey rink?

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08-04-2012, 01:13 PM
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lol, no

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08-04-2012, 01:16 PM
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If they can make lush, real grass golf courses grow out of the desert in Saudi Arabia, then they can make ice in a state that usually gets it that time of year anyway.

Contrary to poular belief, we don't have non-stop sunshine, 120 degree weather and palm trees


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08-04-2012, 01:22 PM
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lol, no
Unfortunately this was my exact reaction.

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08-04-2012, 01:31 PM
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Boom Boom Anton
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No.

While it isn't 120 and palm trees, we get snow only a couple of times a year and you could just as easily get a 50+ degree day as a 20 degree. The average high temperature in Raleigh in January is 51 degrees. The average in February is 55 degrees. Given the thing would have to be scheduled well in advance, the chances of having decent hockey weather is pretty slim.

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08-04-2012, 01:32 PM
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I very much doubt that Raleigh will ever host a Winter Classic. But I don't know if it's out of the question for the Canes to ever play in one. Especially if by some miracle they ever get the Whalers rights back I could see them playing one in Boston. Or if the Buffalo rivalry heated up again, or if they ever decide to try one in Washington.

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08-04-2012, 01:33 PM
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lol no, and not for lack of possibly suitable weather or location (Carter-Finley's right ****ing next to the RBC Center). Much better chance we see the Canes as an opponent (.01% vs 0%) for the winter classic.

I'd be willing to bet that the NHL is going to run the same set of teams into the ****ing ground the same way they do with their marketing. The CrosbyMalkins, Ovechkin, Philly, Rangers, Boston, Detroit, Chicago... possibly including Buffalo in there if they ever become decent again. Even Minnesota, who should be ****ing ideal for this, has no chance in hell unless they flat out *****slap the west this year and keep that core intact. Our only chance is if Canes-Caps becomes something of a rivalry now that both teams are good (on paper) and we plucked Semin from them. That one will be up in DC.

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08-04-2012, 01:38 PM
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You should post this on the main board. I bet lots of people would love the idea.

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08-04-2012, 01:52 PM
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The Hurricanes best chance of playing in a winter classic is if they become a consistent playoff team and get to be the visiting team up north somewhere. Personally I'd love a Minnesota-Carolina classic.

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08-04-2012, 02:21 PM
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Personally I'd love a Minnesota-Carolina classic.
ooooo, yes!

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08-04-2012, 02:23 PM
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Yep. When we're moved to Quebec in 2015.

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08-04-2012, 02:29 PM
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lol no

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08-04-2012, 02:52 PM
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Meh, it's possible in the sense that they could pull it off, but the NHL would never go for it. It was like pulling teeth to get the All-Star game here, and this seems like a far bigger challenge, logistically speaking.

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08-04-2012, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boom Boom Anton View Post
No.

While it isn't 120 and palm trees, we get snow only a couple of times a year and you could just as easily get a 50+ degree day as a 20 degree. The average high temperature in Raleigh in January is 51 degrees. The average in February is 55 degrees. Given the thing would have to be scheduled well in advance, the chances of having decent hockey weather is pretty slim.
As others have pointed out, it's more impractical in that we're not the type of market the NHL would want to give a WC to. Weather's not the concern - hell, if the NHL could stage an outdoor preseason game in Las Vegas, I think an outdoor game n Raleigh in July wouldn't be too much of an issue (unless, of course, we got rain. Rain, not warmer weather, is the enemy of the WC)


Last edited by DaveG: 08-04-2012 at 04:04 PM. Reason: naw dude
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08-04-2012, 03:48 PM
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You should post this on the main board. I bet lots of people would love the idea.
Click Me

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08-04-2012, 03:48 PM
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Once they realize that putting the same 6 teams (Pens, Boston, Philly, Caps, Red Wings, Blackhawks) in the WC over and over is going to run the event into the ground, I think they will open it up to more "story based" matchups than just pure ratings bonanza's (like actual rivalry's- wasn't Pens-Caps the highest rated regular season game ever?).

For example, lets say Skinner scores 50 (something that I think he is capable of, even in this low scoring NHL) and leads the high octane Hurricanes into the playoffs. Let's say our new found rivalry with the Bruins goes somewhere in the regular season and then they meet in the playoffs. That's a great story right there- a young, offensive minded team versus a veteran, defensive, gritty team. And they both happen to hate each other.

If Carolina can become a contender and create an identity for itself, I could see it happening, especially with Carter-Finely right next to PNC. But too much would have to go our way for it to be anywhere close to realistic.

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08-04-2012, 08:13 PM
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I believe it was 2009 when January had 19 days over 65 degrees. I can't see the weather even having a chance of cooperating...

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08-05-2012, 01:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plan The Parade View Post
Once they realize that putting the same 6 teams (Pens, Boston, Philly, Caps, Red Wings, Blackhawks) in the WC over and over is going to run the event into the ground, I think they will open it up to more "story based" matchups than just pure ratings bonanza's (like actual rivalry's- wasn't Pens-Caps the highest rated regular season game ever?).
1) "Pure ratings bonanzas" are the reason the event exists.

2) With the exception of the pilot attempt, every other matchup has been more "story-based" than any conceivable Canes-vs-X matchup. Unless the Canes become the first post-Oilers dynasty AND develop an arch-rivalry on the Pens/Caps level, there is nothing we could bring to the table to match the multi-generational hate and long playoff histories of the other matchups.

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08-05-2012, 03:17 AM
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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
1) "Pure ratings bonanzas" are the reason the event exists.
Then what is the difference between the WC and any other Monday night NBC game that seems to (as a requirement) feature at least one of the 6 teams I mentioned? Oh, right, it's played outside.

I agree with the point that the clear and only purpose of the WC is to get ratings. But unless they start to pick their matchups with more than just media markets in mind, the gimmick (and TV ratings) will become very stale very quickly.

The two WC's that broke 4 million viewers were Pens-Caps (which was the highest viewed WC) and Blackhawks-Detroit. You had the "Crosby vs. Ovechkin" in one, and the "Renewal of a rivalry" in another. The others, while (much) better than 'Canes-Thrashers, didn't bring anything close to that level.



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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
2) With the exception of the pilot attempt, every other matchup has been more "story-based" than any conceivable Canes-vs-X matchup.
Agree.

The reason I brought up the story angle is because if the cards fall the right way (and just to be clear, I'm talking about Skinner and the 'Canes taking the League by storm and the establishment of a rivalry that goes places, an extremely tall task), then the 'Canes can be brought up in the discussion.



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Unless the Canes become the first post-Oilers dynasty AND develop an arch-rivalry on the Pens/Caps level, there is nothing we could bring to the table to match the multi-generational hate and long playoff histories of the other matchups.
When the casual viewer (and honestly the average hockey fan) is not extensively aware of said playoff histories, I don't see how it makes a difference.

But I agree with your other points. Except the first post-Oilers dynasty was the Red Wings. Just look at their amazing draft record.

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08-05-2012, 05:36 AM
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As others have pointed out, it's more impractical in that we're not the type of market the NHL would want to give a WC to. Weather's not the concern - hell, if the NHL could stage an outdoor preseason game in Las Vegas, I think an outdoor game n Raleigh in July wouldn't be too much of an issue (unless, of course, we got rain. Rain, not warmer weather, is the enemy of the WC)
I think you and others are missing the point on the weather. It's not that there couldn't be technology to make it work if it was 55 and sunny. (Although even with technology, if it was 55 and sunny, the ice would suck and it would be far less than optimal. And as you said, rain would be a nightmare). The cold weather and snow are itself directly intertwined the WC. When the NHL first came up with the WC, it conjured up visions of fans with hats, scarves, warm coats...with players with hats on their helmets, trying to stay warm on the bench, seeing their breath......Uncertainty of snow falling on the rink, etc.. It is using that to get ratings.

Moving it to a location that has warm weather IMO, takes almost all of the marketing appeal of a winter classic regardless of which teams are playing in it and would turn it into more of a novelty IMO.

I grew up playing on an outdoor rink in the north. Every few days, the town would flood it and my brother and I would have to get out there and shovel if off after a snowfall if we wanted to play. Games were on outdoor rinks and some rinks had no boards, only snowbanks. Warm indoor rinks and NHL games are a far cry from where I played as a kid (and likely many NHL'rs as well). Even though it is starting to lose it's appeal some, IMO, the NHL is marketing it as players going back and playing in elements that reminded them (and fans) of their youth.

Of course, the NHL is doing this to solely to make more money, improve ratings, and try to get more fans viewing the game.

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08-05-2012, 06:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Plan The Parade View Post
Then what is the difference between the WC and any other Monday night NBC game that seems to (as a requirement) feature at least one of the 6 teams I mentioned? Oh, right, it's played outside.
And you think they'll change that approach with the Winter Classic instead of the weekly game?

Quote:
But unless they start to pick their matchups with more than just media markets in mind, the gimmick (and TV ratings) will become very stale very quickly.
They have always had more than media markets in mind. Otherwise it wouldn't have taken 5 years to get the Rangers in there.

Quote:
The two WC's that broke 4 million viewers were Pens-Caps (which was the highest viewed WC) and Blackhawks-Detroit. You had the "Crosby vs. Ovechkin" in one, and the "Renewal of a rivalry" in another. The others, while (much) better than 'Canes-Thrashers, didn't bring anything close to that level.
Pens/Caps was played in prime time. Otherwise it would have been comparable to the two that bookended it.

Basically, Wings/Hawks set the ratings bar when the novelty was at its peak. That doesn't reinforce the idea that the branding and ratings will improve by introducing flavor-of-the-year teams from smaller hockey markets.


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When the casual viewer (and honestly the average hockey fan) is not extensively aware of said playoff histories, I don't see how it makes a difference.
The casual viewer is aware of Wings/Hawks, Bruins/Flyers, Pens/Caps and Rangers/Flyers being high profile matchups.

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08-05-2012, 09:19 AM
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I don't know...the Hawks went through that period of suckitude that lasted like 8 years extending to before the lockout and peoples' renewed interest in the NHL after the lockout. They made the playoffs for the first time since 2002 and won a round for the first time in over 10 years.

Bruins/Flyers really isn't/wasn't a huge rivalry, and the comeback didn't even happen until later that year, and the Rangers/Flyers is another older rivalry where one of the teams sucked for a long period of time. Only the Pens/Caps with Crosby/Ovechkin was a real rivalry to the casual viewer.

It's always largely been about media markets.

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08-05-2012, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by What the Faulk View Post
I don't know...the Hawks went through that period of suckitude that lasted like 8 years extending to before the lockout and peoples' renewed interest in the NHL after the lockout. They made the playoffs for the first time since 2002 and won a round for the first time in over 10 years.
Hawks/Wings is the biggest all-American hockey rivalry. It was an obvious choice for the first "big time" Classic.

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Bruins/Flyers really isn't/wasn't a huge rivalry
Of course it is! Started in the 1970s and has been a healthy ~#3 on each team's list ever since. Bearing in mind that their #1s are blood feuds.

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Rangers/Flyers is another older rivalry where one of the teams sucked for a long period of time.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flyers–Rangers_rivalry

Even as the smallest WC rivalry to date, it's on a completely different scale than anything the Hurricanes have experienced. I wouldn't want to be a visiting fan at a Flyers/Rangers game, even during an "off" season.


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Only the Pens/Caps with Crosby/Ovechkin was a real rivalry to the casual viewer.
The opposite is closer to true.

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It's always largely been about media markets.
And maybe what needs to be stated explicitly is that the large media markets are also the oldest, most developed, with the largest fanbases and biggest rivalries. For practical purposes, there is nothing that a team like the Hurricanes could do to jump ahead of those teams as a marquee attraction.

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08-05-2012, 12:02 PM
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They could one if it was a street hockey game..

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08-05-2012, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
And maybe what needs to be stated explicitly is that the large media markets are also the oldest, most developed, with the largest fanbases and biggest rivalries. For practical purposes, there is nothing that a team like the Hurricanes could do to jump ahead of those teams as a marquee attraction.
Not true. We could acquire Sidney Crosby in a trade.

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