While it may not have been on the level of twisted genius as Rod Blagojevich Prison Uniform Night, the ECHL Las Vegas Wranglers’ Indoor Winter Classic was a nice wet raspberry in the face of the NHL for cancelling its annual outdoor game due to the lockout.
The championship trophy given out on New Year’s Day was very much in keeping with that theme:
The Wranglers defeated the Ontario Reign, 3-2, to win the “Indoor Winter Classic championship” on home ice, which you see team captain Mike Madill holding here. The trophy The trophy features an upper shelf that has two U.S. dollar signs and a glittery-scarf-wearing bobble head doll of the team’s mascot, The Duke. The entire award is wrapped in a chain that is padlocked, and cost under $29 to create.
(We assume this being a Vegas Winter Classic, the winners also receive free buffet vouchers and comp tickets to a Louis Anderson show.)
So how was this game held indoors anything like a Winter Classic?
Well, the doors of Orleans Arena were left open, with a high temperature on Jan. 1 of 47 degrees in Vegas.
But it doesn’t feel like a true Winter Classic without some snow, right? Leave that to the Wranglers:
Hey, who needs 115,000 fans outside at the Big House when you can have 3,000 signing “Sweet Caroline” under a flurry of fake snow inside a Las Vegas rink?
Incidentally, the New York Islanders were considering an Indoor Winter Classic as a stealthy way to clear asbestos flakes from the rafters of Nassau Coliseum ...