Report: Blackhawks and Red Wings to play at Wrigley Field for ’09 outdoor game

Comcast Sportsnet reported Wednesday night that next year’s outdoor NHL game will be an Original Six matchup with the Chicago Blackhawks taking on the Detroit Red Wings at Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs.

No formal date has been announced, though the January 1 placement of this year’s game in Buffalo, a game attended by more than 71,000 to see the Sabres taking on the Pittsburgh Penguins at Ralph Wilson Stadium, seemed to work well. An official announcement from the NHL is expected in the coming weeks.

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The other leading candidate to host the 2009 game, Yankee Stadium, had been ruled out recently by Gary Bettman.

Wrigley Field was built in 1914 and is considered one of the meccas of baseball. After renovations in 2006, the capacity for baseball games increased to 41,118, but the NHL could potentially add more seats to increase the attendance for their game.