NHL announces Rangers vs. Sabres 2018 Winter Classic at CitiField

NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 08: Pyrotechnics light up the night sky above Citi Field after the game between the Miami Marlins and New York Mets on April 8, 2017 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

The New York Rangers and Buffalo Sabres will meet on New Year’s Day in the 2018 Winter Classic at CitiField, home of Major League Baseball’s New York Mets.

Newsday first reported this in March.

“The Winter Classic made its debut under snowy Buffalo skies in 2008, and we look forward to celebrating the 10th anniversary of that landmark event by matching the Sabres with their intrastate rivals, the New York Rangers, in the 2018 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Citi Field,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement. “With New York City as its host, the renewal of our New Year’s tradition will continue to inspire hockey memories for our clubs, our players and our fans.”

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Both teams will be making their second appearances in the Winter Classic, and for the Rangers it will be their fourth time participating in an outdoor game having play in two Stadium Series games. The 2018 edition with mark the 10th anniversary of the Sabres playing in the inaugural event against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Including Buffalo is a wise decision for NBC. The 2017 Winter Classic between the Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues at Busch Stadium delivered the smallest audience for a Winter Classic on the network. If you look at the ratings of the major NHL events in any given year, Buffalo is a city that always posts strong numbers.

No word yet on what other outdoor game will be included on the NHL’s 2017-18 events calendar. Earlier this year Bettman said that there would likely be three games even if the league was sending its players to the Pyeongchang Olympics next February.

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Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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