An Ill-Conceived Impulse in Montreal Is Thwarted

Rest easy — when the Capitals visit Montreal on November 28, there’ll be no hokie facsimile of an outdoor hockey game hosted by one of North America’s worst football stadiums. Instead, Alexander Ovechkin and his teammates will have to settle for competing in one of the finest hockey rinks on the planet, Bell Centre. Tarik got to the bottom of this silly story earlier today. From the get-go, this was a brazen money grab ploy by the Habs (selling 70,000 seats for Ovi and the Caps as opposed to 20,000 in their home shrine). And it would have delivered none of the aesthetic charms we’ve come to associate with the Winter Classic. This idea was so bad you have to believe Commissioner Bettman had some role in it.

The bottom line: there’s a CFL tenant in Olympic Stadium (the roof of which once was open-air) whose season may well last into our Thanksgiving week, preventing the Habs from refashioning the football field into a makeshift hockey rink.

Montreal remains one of the most anticipated visits by out-of-town media, and Belle Centre among their favorite venues. A whole lot of hockey media are gratified by this turn of events. Caps’ fans, meanwhile, should look forward to their team enjoying their New Years Day under snowfall on NBC some day soon, and not settle for greed-guided schemes like Montreal’s.

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