On Tuesday night, we shared news that Chicago’s Soldier Field would host two NCAA contests next February. Like any self-respected big city official, Chicago Park District CEO Michael Kelly is dreaming bigger, though. Kelly told Brian Hamilton that he hopes Solider Field will one day host a Winter Classic after losing out to Wrigley Field in 2009.
“Do I think this could pave the way to a future NHL (Winter Classic)? I certainly think so,” Kelly said. “I think we’re going to pack this place. I think this, at least for one day, will rival a Bears game. I could easily see 57,000, 62,000 people in this stadium going nuts.”
“I’d put us up against anybody in the country — one, as a hockey town; two, as the proper venue for hockey in Chicago.”
While the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins show that teams can appear in more than one Winter Classic, it hasn’t returned to the same venue twice just yet. With that in mind, Solider Field representatives might need to wait a little while before that dream comes true.
There’s little denying that it would be cool, even if they don’t have Wrigley’s ivy.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.