The NHL announced a new puck technology to deal with weather at the Winter Classic
The Winter Classic still hasn’t visited any of the warmer outdoor hockey regions like the Stadium series has, but they still seem to be concerned about how the weather is affecting the game.
The New Year’s Day game will be hosted in Notre Dame, Indiana this year and between the Boston Bruins and the Chicago Blackhawks, and the NHL has introduced a new technology to help increase the quality of play. There are always talks about how poor the ice is and how much the puck bounces around every year and the NHL has focused in on really trying to improve on the latter of those two problems.
They announced that they will have thermochromic puck coatings on the pucks at the Winter Classic.
From the NHL PR’s press release, Dan Craig explained the technology a little more:
“Hockey pucks are made of vulcanized rubber and glide smoother and faster when frozen,” said Dan Craig, NHL Vice President of Facilities Operations. “Freezing a puck eliminates bouncing, and game officials closely monitor the puck for temperature changes that affect performance while in play. A coating that changes color when the puck is above freezing will more accurately alert the officials that it is time for a replacement.”
It will be interesting to see if the change helps at all. We probably will get an honest review, because players have always been pretty open about the quality of ice after Winter Classics in the past.
When we first saw that the NHL was introducing some kind of glowing puck we thought the FoxTrax glowing puck might be coming back and we’re not sure if we were relieved or bummed out that it isn’t. We might not even be far from that either though. Just look at some of the technology the IIHF has been testing this year: