PITTSBURGH (Sports Radio 93.7 The Fan) – Ahead of Saturday’s NHL Stadium Series game between the Penguins and Flyers, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman joined Andrew Fillipponi during Friday’s “Cook & Poni Show” to address a wide variety of topics.
First up was the weather heading into Saturday’s game. With temperatures Friday expected to be in the mid-70s, many fans were wondering how the ice would be able to withstand the heat.
“It’ll be fun, and what the weather is, because it’s unpredictable is one of the great intriguing parts of putting on these games,” said Bettman.
Bettman adds these games are special events for the cities that host them.
“It’s not quite as novel on television, but the fact is it is a big deal, these are generally highly rated games for us, and as I said, our fans can’t get enough of them,” said Bettman.
He continued by saying that hockey fans can’t get enough of the outdoor games and that they aren’t going away anytime soon.
“They provide unique memories and a great way to celebrate the sport,” he said. “We’re going to do more than one game next year and probably more than two.”
On another subject, Bettman says he agrees with some hockey fans who were not fans of the “Bye Week” this season.
“We think that it didn’t work so well this year, it’s got a compressed schedule. We’re gonna look at trying to do it again next year in a different way, that hopefully will be better and more predictable for the teams and players,” said Bettman.
Bettman also addressed how the Olympics impacts the NHL as a whole, the World Cup of Hockey and if an outdoor game could be coming to Happy Valley.
Listen to the entire interview below: