NHL will open 2010-2011 Season Overseas

The Phoenix Coyotes and Boston Bruins will travel oversees for the beginning of the 2010-2011 season playing at O2 Arena Prague, Czech Republic. Phoenix and Boston will play their two first games against each other on Saturday, October 9th and Sunday, October 10th.

The Carolina Hurricanes and the Minnesota Wild will face off at Hartwell Areena in Helsinki, Finland on Thursday, October 7th and Friday, October 8th.

The Columbus Blue Jackets and the San Jose Sharks compete in a conference square off in Stockholm, Sweden. The two teams will play both Friday, October 8th and Saturday, October 9th at Ericsson Globe Arena.

The oversees games are a continuing business move to increase fans across the globe. Last season, the Chicago Blackhawks and the Florida Panthers opened in Helsinki. Sales on Friday and Saturday broke the Hartwall Areena record for highest merchandise sales ever for a hockey game at that venue. Merchandise sales also saw and increase of 52% from the 2008 numbers.

Be it that you are for or oppose the NHL’s move to attract more fans, it seems it is here to say and for the right reason. The move increases global audience as some competitors such as the NFL already have.


  1. Any indication on what time the games will start? If I recall correctly, the Friday game that the Wings and Blackhawks played in Sweden was during the middle of the day and made it difficult for US fans to watch. I don’t mind the NHL going overseas to gain more fans abroad, but I don’t know how I feel when it hinders the ability of home town fans to watch the games, too.

  2. If you (Chris) mean last years game against St. Louis
    in Sweden I believe you are correct in that it was a 3:00pm, local time, start. And it was during the week, too, if I remember correctly. Who can watch hockey at 3pm on a Thursday?

  3. Yea, I do believe you are right Tony as it was afternoon games. Kind of sucks, but I flipped between screens at work which was neat. Sure my production may have been down just a wee little bit, but worth it.

  4. Yeah, St. Louis, sorry about that. The first game was on Friday, Oct. 2, and the second game was on Saturday the 3rd. But you’re right Tony, who can watch hockey at 3pm on a Thursday? At least this year Phoenix and Boston will be played on Saturday and Sunday, but the Carolina/Minnesota games will both fall during the week. Most local fans will miss those games because of the start times (unless you’re like Eric and stream the games on your computer at your desk on company time, lol).

  5. Eric streams the game on his computer on COMPANY
    time???? Wow- what a sweet gig he must have.

    Sounds like he works for a family member or something but I’m just guessing…………..

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