Monday, December 31, 2018

2019 Winter Classic Preview

We're ringing in the New Year tonight and that means that the NHL is going outside tomorrow.

It's a couple of the usual teams playing in the Winter Classic, as the Blackhawks and Bruins will be meeting at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, IN, home of the Fighting Irish.  These two teams have been pretty well a constant in these outdoor match-ups, either one of them playing in a good portion of the outdoor games in the NHL's last 10 years of outdoor games.

The jerseys that each team are going to be wearing are looking fairly sharp, excellent throwbacks to the early days of these two sides, we'll be in for a visual treat.

More importantly, the question is, will be treated to a lot of points in the hockey pool?  Between the two NHL clubs, our 25-team hockey pool has 23 players selected, but not all of them are going to get to play.

Pool Team Chicago Boston
Benson Corey Crawford Zdeno Chara
Brenda Charlie McAvoy
Brian Alex DeBrincat
Henri Jokiharju
Derek B. Dominik Kahun
Eric Patrice Bergeron
Jesse Jonathan Toews Tuukka Rask
Mike Torey Krug
Neil Gustav Forsling David Krejci
Scott Cam Ward
Stacey M. Brent Seabrook Jake DeBrusk
David Pastrnak
Jaroslav Halak
Stuart Dylan Strome Brad Marchand
Patrick Kane
Tony Erik Gustafsson
Duncan Keith
Brandon Saad

On the Chicago side, Corey Crawford is out indefinitely with a concussion and defenseman Henri Jokiharju is away in Vancouver/Victoria playing in the World Juniors for Finland, so neither are playing in tomorrow's game.

For Boston, Brad Marchand is expected to play, coming off of an upper-body injury, so minus any setbacks, he should be there.  Charlie McAvoy's status will be dependent on whether or not he practices on Monday on the outdoor ice, he has been on the IR for the last couple of days, but is eligible to come off when he's ready to go.  He's day-to-day and questionable for tomorrow's game.

What does that leave us?  Well, Stacey M. leads all teams in the pool with three skaters and a goalie, while Stuart and Tony will each have three skaters on the ice for this game.  We don't know who the starting goalies are going to be just yet, so there's still some intrigue left here in the pool.

No money in the outdoor games again this year, which was too bad for Tony's team last season, as he walked away with the title with 8 points in the three games outdoors last season.  He's certainly got another good shot at it again with three players in this game and the Stadium Series later on in February, still to be played.

It's an 11am MT start tomorrow, so you should have more than enough time to sleep in and nurse those hangovers before the game starts. 

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