Kraken to play NHL Winter Classic at Seattle’s T-Mobile Park in 2024

Jan 2, 2023, 12:20 PM
Kraken winter classic T-Mobile Park...
A general view of T-Mobile Park during a Seattle Mariners game against the Houston Astros on April 15, 2022. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Outdoor hockey is coming to Seattle next year after the NHL announced Monday that the Seattle Kraken will play the Vegas Golden Knights in the 2024 Discover NHL Winter Classic at T-Mobile Park.

T-Mobile Park will be the 14th different venue and eighth baseball stadium to host the NHL’s premier regular-season event since it started in 2008.

Seattle Kraken fans celebrate historic start of hockey season

The Mariners stadium’s retractable roof will allow the NHL to build the rink and set the stage on the field. The goal will be to play the game with the roof open.

The game in Seattle will pit the two most recent NHL expansion teams against each other.

“We’re thrilled, and I think the storylines, Seattle against Vegas, speak for itself,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said.

The Kraken will become the 29th NHL team to participate in a regular-season outdoor game. It will be the second appearance for the Golden Knights, who played the Colorado Avalanche in the 2021 NHL Outdoors at Lake Tahoe on Feb. 20, 2021.

Seattle will be the first Pacific Division team to host the Winter Classic, which has never been played west of the central time zone.

The Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames, Los Angeles Kings, Vancouver Canucks, and San Jose Sharks have hosted outdoor games, but none were dubbed the Winter Classic. The Oilers, Flames, and Canucks hosted Heritage Classic games; the Kings and Sharks hosted Stadium Series games.

According to Wikipedia, the first outdoor game on record to feature an NHL team was on February 2, 1954, in Marquette, Mich. The Detroit Red Wings played an exhibition game in 21 degrees Fahrenheit weather, against the Marquette Pirates, a team made up of composed of inmates at Michigan’s Marquette Branch Prison.

The game, and the Pirates club, were allegedly organized as a way for Red Wings manager Jack Adams to make good with two convicted mafia members incarcerated at the prison. By the end of the first period alone, the Red Wings had amassed an 18–0 score against the prisoners. They gave up on keeping score after that.

The game is set to be held Jan. 1, 2024.

The game will be broadcast exclusively on TNT in the United States and on Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada. A time will be announced at a later date.

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