Earlier this week, we received word that the Buffalo Sabres will play an exhibition game in Mannheim, Germany on October 4. That won’t be the only news regarding the 2011 Premiere Challenge’s exhibition schedule, as the league announced that the New York Rangers will face HC Sparta Prague on Thursday, September 29. The contest will take place at TESLA Arena in Prague, Czech Republic.
Vinny Prospal is the only Czech Republic native on the Rangers roster and he’ll be an unrestricted free agent, so it’s unclear if the Rangers will be able to win over the crowd with returning home heroes. (The Sabres won’t have that problem since they employ Mannheim, Germany native Jochen Hecht.)
This won’t be the Rangers’ only game in Europe, as they’re also set to begin the regular season overseas. They’ll play the first two games of their 2011-12 season at the Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, with an October 7 game against the Los Angeles Kings and an October 8 contest versus the Anaheim Ducks. Something tells me that Henrik Lundqvist will have a few people cheering for him in those games, by the way.