Monumental - The Washington Capitals will host the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2018 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series on March 3, 2018 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md., the NHL announced today.
“We look forward to welcoming the Toronto Maple Leafs and their fans to beautiful Annapolis next March for the first-ever outdoor hockey game at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium,” Capitals majority owner Ted Leonsis said. “Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium will be a unique and historic setting for fans from all across our region to experience what promises to be a great hockey game. We are honored to have the opportunity to play at one of the very best institutions our region, and our country, have to offer – the United States Naval Academy.”
“Our gratitude to the NHL and their administration for allowing us to host this special event and tribute to the military, and most especially the Naval Academy,” U.S. Naval Academy Director of Athletics, Chet Gladchuk said. “Conducting this matchup in Annapolis will allow us to bring together our midshipmen, many from the Fleet, and the local community to enjoy a day of exciting action and add another chapter in the annals of our stadium’s history.”
Some people have been saying that the Winter Classic and the additional other outdoor games have kind of lost their luster in recent years. The Winter Classic itself, the New Years Day game, still draws big because they promote the hell out of it and have it on when there isn’t much else to watch. But the “Coors Stadium Series” just randomly pops in out of nowhere. I’m pretty sure this last season I was just flipping channels and stumbled upon an outdoor game in Los Angeles, completely out of nowhere on a random Saturday night.
But now the NHL is changing it up, and will make the Stadium Series must-watch. Having outdoor games at Military academies across the country is such a brilliant idea. They’re starting at the Naval Academy, they will for sure have one at West Point probably with the Rangers, a game at Air Force out in in Colorado with the Avs, and who knows, maybe they’ll get crazy and find a way to play in Hawaii on an aircraft carrier or something.
The entire weekend in Annapolis for the first game is for sure going to be a must-attend weekend. The friendly Toronto folk coming down, the USA vs Canada slant on the game, and all the men and women of the armed forces going nuts at the game. Fantastic idea by the NHL, and hopefully the Caps make America proud and move to 3-0 in outdoor games.