The NHL on Monday made official its plans to play two outdoor regular season games at Lake Tahoe this season, announcing the details of the two-day, two-game NHL Outdoors event.
The Colorado Avalanche will face off against the Vegas Golden Knights on Feb. 20 for Bridgestone NHL Outdoors Saturday, followed by Honda NHL Outdoors Sunday on Feb. 21 — a game that will see the Philadelphia Flyers take on the Boston Bruins. Puck drop for both games is 3 p.m. ET, with the south shore of Lake Tahoe, the biggest alpine lake in North America, as the backdrop at Edgewood Tahoe Resort.
A rendering of #NHLOutdoors at Lake Tahoe for the weekend of Feb. 20-21, 2021.
Next month’s games featuring the @GoldenKnights, @Avalanche, @NHLFlyers and @NHLBruins will increase the number of regular-season outdoor games in NHL history to 32. #NHLStats pic.twitter.com/BJR43FMvkO
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) January 11, 2021
Lake Tahoe is located on the border of California and Nevada. Neither game will include fans in attendance.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman noted in the league’s press release Monday that the unique challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic played a part in selecting Lake Tahoe as the location, as previously ideas of putting an outdoor game in a non-stadium setting weren’t possible because of the logistics of fan attendance.
“We are delighted to announce the NHL Outdoors at Lake Tahoe and can’t wait to get on site for what undoubtedly will be two thrilling games in a breathtaking setting,” Bettman said. “Ever since we began staging outdoor games in 2003 and made it a regular feature of our annual schedule in 2008, we have considered myriad non-stadium settings, but they always were rendered impractical because of the sheer volume of demand from our fans to attend.
“This season, unable to host our usual huge crowds at such events, we will continue our tradition of taking the game and our players back to their outdoor roots when the Avalanche meet the Golden Knights and the Bruins face the Flyers on an open-air rink at the spectacular Edgewood Tahoe Resort.”
#NHLOutdoors on February 20 & 21
— NHL (@NHL) January 11, 2021
In keeping with the NHL’s tradition of outdoor games, these two matchups will be the 31st and 32nd outdoor NHL games held since the first in 2003.
All four teams involved will be suiting up in their recently-unveiled Reverse Retro sweaters, which were released back in November.
The Lake Tahoe event will be the first outdoor game for the Golden Knights. It will be the third for the Avalanche, fourth for the Bruins, and fifth time taking things outside for the Flyers.