The NHL will be heading outside on New Year’s Day again to kick off 2019. The league is set to open another calendar year with their annual outdoor Winter Classic game, and here is what you need to know about this year’s event.
Where is the game?
This year’s game is being held at Notre Dame Stadium in on the school’s campus in Indiana. It’s the first time that the home of the Fighting Irish has hosted an outdoor hockey game, and it’s the first time that the game is not being played in the host team’s state. It’s expected to be the second-most attended Winter Classic ever, as seating capacity at Notre Dame Stadium is listed at 77,622.
Pro tip: Arrive early
7 a.m. ET — Parking lots open
11 a.m. ET — Gates open
1 p.m. ET — #WinterClassic
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) December 31, 2018
Who is playing?
It will be a rematch of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final, as the Chicago Blackhawks will host the Boston Bruins in their first meeting of the season.
The Blackhawks have had a tumultuous season to this point. At 15-20-6, they currently sit second-to-last in the Central division and have the second-worst points percentage in the entire NHL. They fired coach Joel Quenneville, who led the team to three Stanley Cup titles in a six-year span, earlier this season following a slow start. Now with Jeremy Colliton behind the bench, the Blackhawks — led by Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Duncan Keith — are looking to salvage what’s left of this season. They’ll head into the Winter Classic riding a two-game winning streak.
Meanwhile, the Bruins battled a ton of key injuries in the early going but are trying to keep pace in a very tough Atlantic division led by the Lightning and Maple Leafs. They currently sit fourth in the division, behind Tampa, Toronto and Buffalo.
This will be the 11th Winter Classic in NHL history. These two teams are no stranger to the event, as it will be the Blackhawks’ fourth time participating and the Bruins’ third time.
The Blackhawks have historically had a tough time with the outdoor games, going 0-3 in their previous three Winter Classic matchups. They lost to the Detroit Red Wingsin the second-ever Winter Classic at Wrigley Field in 2009, then to the Capitals at Nationals Park in 2015 and the Blues at Busch Stadium in 2017.
This is the first time that the Bruins have been the visiting team in the Classic. They previously hosted it twice; once at Fenway Park in 2010 (they beat the Flyers in OT) and once at Gillette Stadium in 2016 (they were blown out by the Canadiens).
What will they be wearing?
As is tradition, both teams will be wearing special alternate uniforms for the occasion. Both teams will be going with a throwback look from the 1930s. The Bruins will have a modified throwback to the club’s uniforms from that era, while Chicago will go black and white to pay homage to the franchise’s look from 1934, the year they won their first Stanley Cup.
The coaching staffs from each team will also be outfitted with some pretty sweet specialty threads.
— Nirva Milord (@NHLnlm) December 30, 2018
These are the jackets the @NHLBlackhawks and @NHLBruins coaching staffs will wear for the #winterclassic. A limited number of them will be available for purchase.
How do I watch?
Date: Tuesday, Jan. 1
Time: 1 p.m. ET
Location: Notre Dame Stadium — Notre Dame, Indiana
Stream: fuboTV (try for free)