The Winnipeg Jets are officially getting an outdoor game.
Following John Shannon's report last month, the NHL made it official on Sunday with league announcing that the Jets will host the Heritage Classic on Oct. 23rd of next season at Investors Group Field against Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers.
The October Heritage Classic will be the earliest an outdoor game has appeared on the NHL calendar, which has usually seen the New Year’s Day Winter Classic kick things off.
The NHL told the Jets back in 2013 they would be getting an outdoor game at some point; so this event has been years in the making.
One interesting part of the weekend? Like many NHL outdoor spectacles, there will be an alumni game on Oct. 22. Now you’re probably asking, “So you mean Atlanta Thrashers alumni for the Jets?” Well, no, because as much as we’d love to see Ray Ferraro, Patrik Stefan and Slava Kozlov, it's going to be a Jets 1.0 squad that will be made up of Dale Hawerchuk, Teemu Selanne (confirmed by Hawerchuk at Sunday's press conference) and probably the likes of Thomas Steen and Bob Essensa, among others, to take on an Oilers side featuring Jari Kurri, Paul Coffey, Mark Messier and Wayne Gretzky.
The Jets-Oilers Heritage Classic game is the first official outdoor game on the NHL’s 2016-17 calendar. The league has yet to confirm the 2017 Winter Classic, which is widely suspected to be between the Chicago Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues at Busch Stadium. A Toronto Maple Leafs-New York Rangers game is also rumored to be in the works for next season as well.
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