National Hockey League
The National Hockey League celebrates its centennial year in 2017.
Festivities are planned throughout 2017, starting with the Rogers NHL Centennial Classic Alumni Game, which will be played on New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2016, at Exhibition Stadium in Toronto, Ontario.
The NHL Centennial Classic will be played in Toronto the following day. The 100 Greatest Players from the NHL’s early years (1917-1967) will be unveiled and honored in a special ceremony.
Centennial Truck Tour
Special events will include an NHL Centennial Truck Tour around the United States and Canada, which will run for 12 full months.
There will be original video content, exclusive memorabilia, fan activations, a giant video screen for viewing parties, a stage for player and alumni appearances, a pop-up synthetic rink for youth hockey games, and clinics.
The three-part caravan will begin its tour in Toronto and visit all NHL markets as well as other ice hockey communities throughout North America.
Another year-long activity will be daily announcement of milestones throughout the league’s 100-year history.
These announcements will be shared across various platforms: online, broadcast, and social media. Included will be original stories and videos.
On January 2, 2017, the league and the Los Angeles Kings will participate in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California, with a float.
Two documentaries about the NHL will be released in 2017. The first, which will be released in Ottawa in March, will chronicle the history of the Stanley Cup.
The second, which will be released in November, will cover key milestones and events in the league’s history.
The NHL Awards will be presented in Las Vegas, Nevada, in June. The location is significant because Las Vegas has been awarded an NHL franchise.
The Vegas Golden Dragons will commence play in the 2017 – 18 NFL season, which will open in October 2017.
The 100 most memorable milestones and events in the NHL’s history will be unveiled in the fall.
New in the 2016 – 17 season will be official bye weeks during the North American ice hockey season’s second half. During the obligatory five-day bye weeks, ice hockey teams can neither play not practice ice hockey. Bye weeks are scheduled for between January 1 and March 3, 2017.
The 2016 – 17 NHL season kicked off on October 12, 2016. It will continue until as late as mid-June 2017, depending on how long the Stanley Cup Playoffs last.
Outdoor Hockey Games
Four outdoor ice hockey games take place this season. The NHL Heritage Classic was played Investors Group Field in Winnipeg, Manitoba, between the Winnipeg Jets and the Edmonton Oilers on October 23, 2016.
The Oilers beat the Jets by a score of 3 – 0 before a raucous crowd of hockey fans.
Further outdoor ice hockey games will be played in in 2017 in Toronto; St Louis, Missouri; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Key NHL Dates in 2017
December 31, 2016 – Centennial Classic Alumni Game
More than 40 retired ice hockey players from the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs will face off against each other on December 31, 2016, at Exhibition Stadium in Toronto, Ontario.
The alumni game will have three 20-minute periods with two 12-minute intermissions.
A similar game between retired ice hockey players from the two teams was held at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan, before a raucous crowd of 105,491 passionate ice hockey fans.
The Toronto Maple Leafs won the alumni game, defeating the Detroit Red Wings by a score of in 3-2 in a shootout.
January 1, 2017 — NHL Centennial Classic
The NHL will be kick off its centennial year with an outdoor ice hockey game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Detroit Red Wings at BMO Field, a.k.a. Exhibition Stadium, home of the Toronto FC of Major League Soccer.
This will be the first time an NHL outdoor hockey game will be played in Canada’s most populous city.
The highly anticipated sporting event will be one of four outdoor regular season games during the 2016–17 NHL season, the others being the 2016 Heritage Classic, 2017 NHL Winter Classic (which will be held the following day), and the 2017 NHL Stadium Series game.
January 2, 2017 – NHL Winter Classic
The season’s third outdoor ice hockey game will pit the St. Louis Blues against their arch-rivals, the Chicago Blackhawks, at Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball.
This will be the first time the NHL Winter Classic will be played West of the Mississippi River.
January 27-30, 2017 – All -Star Break
If this is the NHL’s 100th anniversary, it is also the golden anniversary of the Los Angeles King, so it is only fitting that the 2017 NHL All-Star Weekend will be held in the Golden State.
The All-Star Skills Competition and Game will be played at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.
The best 100 NHL players from 1968 to the present will be unveiled at a special ceremony in Los Angeles during NHL All-Star Weekend.
Both current and former ice hockey players will be in town for what promises to be the largest gathering of NHL stars at one place in the hockey league’s 100-year history.
January 29, 2017 – All Star Game
The 62nd National Hockey League All-Star Game will be played at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
The mid-season All-Star Game will follow the same format adopted at the 2016 NHL All-Star Game, which was held on January 31, 2016, in Nashville, Tennessee, at Bridgestone Arena, home of the Nashville Predators.
There will be a four-team, three-on-three, single-elimination tournament, with one team representing each of the league’s four divisions.
February 25, 2017 – NHL Stadium Series
The Pittsburgh Penguins, last season’s Stanley Cup winners, will host cross-state rivals, the Philadelphia Flyers at Heinz Field, the open air home of the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League.
Both the Penguins and the Flyers will celebrate their 50th anniversary next season. Several other hockey teams will celebrate their 50th anniversary next year.
February 28, 2017 – NHL Trade Deadline
The league’s NHL trade deadline is scheduled to take place on February 28, subject to change.
March 15-18, 2017 – Stanley Cup Celebrations
The Ottawa Senators and the NHL will celebrate the 125th anniversary of the donation of the Stanley Cup by Lord Stanley of Preston with a series of special events.
April 9, 2017 – Last Day of Regular Season
The NHL season will conclude with 10 games on the final day of play. With the exception of games having playoff implications, the most eventful game of all will pit the Detroit Red Wings against the New Jersey Devils.
This will be the last regular-season ice hockey game to be played at Joe Louis Arena, the team’s home since 1979.
The Red Wings will move into a brand new building in Detroit for the 2017-18 NHL season.
April 12, 2017 – Stanley Cup Playoffs Begin
The Stanley Cup Playoffs will begin on April 12, 2017, pitting 30 of 30NHL teams against each other. The series will continue until as late as mid-June, depending on how many games are necessary to declare a winner.
June 23 – 24, 2017 – 2017- 2018 Draft
The 2017 – 18 NFL draft will be held in Chicago, Illinois.
November 26, 2017 – Anniversary of the League’s Founding
The 100th anniversary of the NHL’s founding will be celebrated in Montreal, Quebec, where the league was founded.
December 19, 207 – Anniversary of the First Games
The 100th anniversary of the first NHL games will be celebrated in Ottawa, where the first game was played.