The Carolina Hurricanes will take part in the first outdoor game in franchise history next year when the team plays host to the Washington Capitals in a Stadium Series game at Carter-Finley Stadium on Feb. 18, 2023.
The Hurricanes might be new to the outdoor game scene, but the Capitals have had plenty of experience braving the elements over the years, as today's announcement now marks the fourth outdoor game the team has been a part of, playing in two Winter Classics, and, now, two Stadium Series.
The 2023 Stadium Series is one of two outdoor games scheduled to take place next season, with the Boston Bruins hosting a yet-to-be-announced opponent at historic Fenway Park on New Year's Day.
This is wonderful news for a rabid Hurricanes fanbase that was promised an outdoor game of their own, only to have it taken away thanks to circumstances out of their control.
The Hurricanes were actually set to host an outdoor contest on Feb. 21, 2021, due to have been played only a few weeks ago, with an opponent to be selected at a later date. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic and the rise of the omicron variant forced the NHL to cancel the game for health and safety reasons, leaving the Hurricanes faithful with no guarantee that the league would make it up to them at a later date.
Thankfully, that faith has been rewarded. One of the league's emerging markets will be given the chance to play some good old-fashioned pond hockey, taking on a divisional opponent in what is sure to be a high-stakes clash.