Getting together for a reunion can sometimes be awkward, but for John LeClair, he can’t wait to team up with Eric Lindros one more time.
The former “Legion of Doom” linemates haven’t played together since the 1999-2000 season but in today’s Winter Class Alumni Game, LeClair tells Sarah Baicker of CSNPhilly.com that he can’t wait to lace ’em up one more time with his old friend.
“It’s going to be fun,” John LeClair said, of reuniting with Lindros. “It’s been a while since we played together. It’s a lot of good times and a lot of good memories. It’s great to see him. He’s a big part of Flyers history. He had a lot of great years. He did a lot of great things. He took us to a Stanley Cup in ’97. He was a big part of it.”
For as controversial as Lindros was through his career in Philly, he’s coming back to town like a conquering hero with the fans eager to go wild for him one more time. We can dream about seeing them lay the body and ripping things up today, but we’ll just have to rely on old highlights for that.
As we discussed earlier this afternoon, the NHL will indeed change the 2012 Winter Classic’s alumni game’s start time. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Sam Carchidi reports that the contest will begin at 3 p.m. ET instead of 1 p.m. ET on Saturday.
Weather.com’s forecast calls for mostly sunny weather with temperatures around 53 degrees around that time – which might actually be a bit warmer than it’s expected to be at 1 p.m. – but perhaps a couple extra hours will give crews enough time to sort the ice out. Versus will carry the alumni game.
Naturally, the bigger worry is how the weather will be on Monday. It’s expected to be considerably cooler, so the 2012 Winter Classic should go off without a hitch. Of course, weather doesn’t always follow the script, so we’ll keep an eye on forecasts as this weekend goes along.
The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Sam Carchidi reports that the 2012 Winter Classic’s alumni game’s start time of 1 pm ET might be moved back a few hours because of weather issues. Previous Winter Classic weather-related worries swirled around too much wind and other problems, but the start time for today’s media skate was reportedly moved because “the sun and warm temperatures were causing havoc on the ice.”
It’s about 50 degrees in Philly right now and it’s expected to be around 51 tomorrow around 1 pm ET tomorrow, so that report does have some merit. Carchidi reports that the NHL would likely make an announcement tonight if it’s determined that a change must be made.
For those who are worried about the same happening for the 2012 Winter Classic, Carchidi reports that it’s expected to be cooler on Monday (and Weather.com’s current forecast seems to agree). Naturally, that could change – Tuesday’s forecast calls for wind and a significant drop in temperature, for example – but the big event doesn’t seem threatened at this point.
I will now step away from my imaginary green screen and hopefully put my meteorological blogging on a lengthy hiatus.
Want to get your hands on the best 2012 Winter Classic tickets that are available? If you base that assessment on cost alone, the asking price for tickets on Terrace 330 are just $9,999 each on StubHub.com as of this writing.
As Dan Gelston’s interesting Associated Press piece shows, the Winter Classic has morphed into a spend-happy spectacle on the scale of marquee events like Wrestlemania, college bowl games and (some might even say) the Super Bowl. Even the alumni games are becoming big business; the most expensive secondary market tickets are at an even $10,000 right now.
(Stubhub estimates that those tickets would arrive on Dec. 30. No word on whether or not they’ll be delivered in a armored vehicle within an envelope made of pure gold.)
Early estimates indicate that about 175,000 fans will attend “open-air events” revolving around the Winter Classic, from college hockey games to public skates.
It all sounds like an overwhelming behemoth of an event, which naturally spawns the next question: which city will be next? That is still to be determined, but the word is that the NHL would eventually like to hash out such plans 14-15 months ahead of time as the Winter Classic evolves.
By then, Stubhub auctioneers might just ask for your mortgage.
Retro-inspired sweaters already add a nostalgic feel to Winter Classic games, but nothing brings the sentimentality quite like alumni games. Still, there’s always a sense of sadness when a fan favorite can’t make it (paging Wayne Gretzky). Luckily, Adam Rotter passes along comforting news: Mike Richter will play for the New York Rangers’ side in the upcoming 2012 Winter Classic alumni game.
There is a caveat, though: he won’t play as a goalie.
Sure, that’s a bummer, but his reasoning is sound. Richter had to hang up his pads because of concussion issues and has some concern about possible risks related to playing that position – even in a friendly contest. As Rotter says, “Any Mike Richter is better than no Mike Richter,” though.
Really, the saddest thing might be that Dan Blackburn will be one of the Rangers’ goalies (alongside John Vanbiesbrouck). In a fairer world, Blackburn would still be an active NHL goalie, instead.