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Volume 26 No. 227
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Wild Look To Have Inside Track On Hosting '21 Winter Classic

All things are "trending in the right direction" for the Wild to host the '21 NHL Winter Classic at Target Field, with an announcement possibly coming in three weeks, according to Michael Russo of THE ATHLETIC. Wild Owner Craig Leipold, the city of Minneapolis and the Twins, led by President Dave St. Peter, have been "working diligently behind the scenes for months in attempt to land the outdoor game." The objective is to "make this much more than the Winter Classic alone." The "ambition is to hold several events in concert with the game and to actually turn the Winter Classic into a weeklong Winter Festival in the Twin Cities." It would be a "celebration of a sport that's so cherished inside the hockey-rich state of Minnesota." The Wild will also be "celebrating their 20th season next year," adding "another neat and fitting storyline" (THEATHLETIC.com, 12/10).

GAINING TRACTION: ESPN.com's Greg Wyshynski noted next month's Winter Classic between the Predators and Stars at Cotton Bowl Stadium has "blown away NHL expectations." The league has "had to open up sections they didn't expect to sell due to demand." With 83,000-plus tickets sold, the '20 Winter Classic is "on track to be 2nd-biggest crowd in NHL outdoor game history" behind Michigan Stadium in '14 (TWITTER.com, 12/9).