The Bruins have been in “consistent contact” with both the National Hockey League and state and city officials about potentially playing their home games outdoors this upcoming season.
The team released a statement Thursday afternoon confirming Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet’s report that they’re looking into the idea of playing at Fenway Park, among other options, but nothing has come to fruition yet.
The @NHLBruins are considering all their options for the upcoming season including playing games at outdoor venues such as Fenway Park.
The Bruins released this statement pic.twitter.com/66Yt77vamB
— Chad Amaral (@Chad_Amaral) December 3, 2020
“I had heard specific mention of Fenway Park, and was told that is in an ‘exploratory phase,’ but it was stressed all venue options are being considered,” Friedman wrote, which the Bruins later confirmed.
Friedman made it clear it’s “a long shot” they’ll actually regularly play outdoors, but he said “it is being explored.” The Bruins are reportedly one of six teams looking into the idea, along with the Anaheim Ducks, Los Angeles Kings, Pittsburgh Penguins, Dallas Stars, and Nashville Predators, according to The Athletic‘s Pierre LeBrun.
LeBrun said the Bruins answered yes to the NHL’s outdoor query and have made it clear they want their fans watching live hockey.
Later in his report, Friedman detailed that there are significant hurdles – most notably cost. Another major issue is approval from players and opponents that would have to alternate between indoor and outdoor venues throughout the season.
“That said, I can’t fault these four teams from researching the idea, attempting to maximize revenue in a league so dependent on gate revenue,” Friedman wrote. “If ever there was a season to try something, this is it.”
I’m not sure it’s possible; the odds are against it — but four NHL teams are looking into the possibility of playing their home games outdoors. Can’t fault anyone for considering their options: https://t.co/7EBe4WQ2Vc
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) December 3, 2020
The Bruins hosted the Philadelphia Flyers in the 2010 Winter Classic, welcomed the Montreal Canadiens to Gillette Stadium in 2016, and faced the Chicago Blackhawks at Notre Dame Stadium as part of the Classic in 2019.
As of Thursday afternoon, the NHL doesn’t currently have an official start date to the season.
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