One of the stranger loves in my life is hockey. I have never lived near an ice rink-- I did more roller skating as a kid than ice skating. The nearest one to my home growing up with the Goggin ice rink, 30 minutes away in Oxford, Ohio-- but the first time I went there was for a youth activity as a high school junior.
However, I picked up a love of hockey from an early age. . I remember Peter Puck from the old NBC broadcasts of hockey from the 70's. I enjoyed watching the Edmonton Oiler dynasties of the '80's on ESPN. And I became-- and remain-- a St. Louis Blues fan from listening to Dan Kelly doing the radio games from 1984 on. I have also been a huge fan of the New Year's Day Winter Classic-- where an outdoor stadium hosts a hockey game once a year. It is a must-view... if for any other reason than to see these huge, venerable stadiums filled with fans for outdoor hockey. Now, it is different. Starting next year, the NHL will host a series of outdoor games, including a game at Soldier Field in Chicago on March first. Other places will also host games-- including Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, and Vancouver's BC Place. I have two minds on this issue. One is it may take some luster from the Winter Classic on New Year's Day. The other is... get me tickets... March first, 2014 at 8 pm at Soldier Field in Chicago. I want to go!! Yes, it will take some allure away from hockey's biggest regular season day-- the Winter Classic on New Year's-- but in the end, it will bring new fans to the NHL... which is never a bad thing.
That's my take...I'm Tom Lee.