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Red Wings to Open 2009-10 Season in Sweden


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#1 YzerFan19

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Posted February 19, 2009 - 11:46 AM

The National Hockey League officially announced today that the Detroit Red Wings will open the 2009-10 regular season in Stockholm, Sweden.

The Red Wings will face the St. Louis Blues in a pair of games at Ericsson Globe Arena on October 2 and 3.

Stockholm hosted two matches between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Ottawa Senators last fall while Prague, Czech Republic, hosted the New York Rangers and the Tampa Bay Lighting. In 2007 the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks met in London.

Helsinki, Finland, will host it's first NHL Premiere event as the Chicago Blackhawks and Florida Panthers will meet there on the same dates.

"The NHL Premiere games are a signature event for the League, our players and our fans," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement. "Playing regular-season games overseas is an excellent way to further engage the passionate NHL fan base in Europe and encourage the growth of the game of hockey."

"We've got a great fan base over there and it would be wonderful to play there," Swede Henrik Zetterberg said. "The Cup was almost two weeks in Sweden, so Red Wings are big in Sweden, so I think they will be really happy if we can come there."

"It's something I'm really excited about and looking forward to," Wings' captain Nicklas Lidstrom said. "Same with my teammates, too, they're all looking forward to it, too, to get a chance to play overseas. I was hoping it was going to happen sooner or later, and I'm happy about the opportunity to play back home."

#2 Mathieu_Datsyuk132351

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Posted February 19, 2009 - 03:43 PM

That's cool. :) It will probably be at really weird times though, I'm guessing.

I'm shocked, also! It seemed for awhile there the Red Wings got no love(which they really don't compared to Pittsburgh and other places ;D). But then came the Winter Classic and now this! :c

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#3 YzerFan19

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Posted February 19, 2009 - 05:14 PM

There's a part of me that doesn't like it but that's because I don't really like any "event" game that the majority of Wings fans are excluded from.

The Winter Classic was the big one for me because the Wings wanted to host their own and they got sent to Chicago instead. With this, at least it's reaching out to a market where there is no "home" team, so it's not picking one team over another.

#4 Britishwingsfan

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Posted February 19, 2009 - 05:18 PM

So it's finally official then. Apparently Ken Holland said if they did play in Europe, then Sweden was the only option, which makes sense. I'm just looking up the viabilty of going, I know someone who might be moving to Sweden. Provided I sort out my stupid passport problems. Don't ask.

#5 Pobster

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Posted February 23, 2009 - 04:54 AM

I'm going to try and get tickets for the game in Stockholm... I want to go when it's Detroit 'home ice' the games say Detroit vs St Louis and St Louis vs Detroit, which one means Detroit will be 'at home'?? I don't know if it's the same as the UK!

Thanks!

#6 YzerFan19

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Posted February 23, 2009 - 08:15 AM

To me, "Detroit vs. St. Louis" would be the home game. I don't know what ordering convention they used but the one I use is to do "home team vs. road team" or "road team @ home team."




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