Outdoor Hockey in Dallas? What a concept!

I said yep. What a concept. (If you are singing Smash Mouth’s All-Star you are very welcome.)

With the NHL season still in the air, front offices across the league are scrambling to come up with an idea to have fans in the stands when the day comes that we see the inaugural puck drop on the ’20-’21 campaign. One of the ideas that would allow fans to be in attendance while also allowing social distancing is the return of regular outdoor hockey. Wait? You mean to tell me they can play hockey outdoors? Unreal. What kind of magic is this? That, my friends, is exactly what I was hoping you would ask.

The 2020 NHL Winter Classic saw a crowd of 85,630 hockey fans pack in the Cotton
Bowl in Dallas, TX in the southern most outdoor professional hockey gam ever played. (Photo: Amanda Spielberger)

All joking aside, outdoor hockey is one of the purest things in all of sports. The annual “ODR Season” or outdoor rink season for the less cultured, is a thing of pure joy and beauty. That being said. I live in Texas, and unfortunately a natural-made frozen pond isn’t popping up anytime soon. Luckily, Dallas recently proved that they didn’t need constant freezing temperatures to have a professional outdoor hockey game.

Believe it or not, this year actually started off on a pretty damn high note for me. The 2020 NHL Winter Classic was held inside the historic Cotton Bowl here in Dallas, Texas. It was truly a feat of science and hockey as the day brought overcast and 50 degree temperatures. A week previous, though, and basically the year leading up to the game the sentiment was the same across the board. “You can’t have hockey outside in Texas. It’s too hot.” Oh ye of little faith. The hockey gods saw it play out otherwise.

So, here we are. Nearing Christmas. The NHL still bickering about money, and a start date. Gary Bettman swinging his little feet in his toddler sized suit. All while fans anxiously wait for some type of good news. Well, here is some good news. The Dallas Cowboys are one of the worst teams in the entire NFL, meaning AT&T Stadium is going to be quite empty come February, and technically it is indoors.

Wouldn’t that be a sight to behold? Dallas Stars hockey at AT&T Stadium? There is plenty of space for social distancing between groups of seats and a screen that makes it easy for anyone not rink side to see all the action. Just tell Jerry Jones he gets a cut. That fossil will do anything for more money.

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