NHL Winter Classic
Today is the fourth chapter of our series about Christmas and winter traditions from around the world! Mara Raposo, one of our consultants, has told us about the NHL Winter Classic, a sport annual event famous in Canada, where she is from.
The NHL Winter Classic is an annual regular season of outdoor ice hockey game played in the National Hockey League, usually on, or around New Yea’s Day.
Along with the NHL All-Star Game, the Winter Classic is considered one of the NHL's premier events; with matchups generally booked to showcase the league's most popular teams and players, the event garners the league its highest attendance and among its highest television ratings. The event is typically promoted as a return to the sport's outdoor roots, meant to evoke memories of pond hockey. Its popularity has led to the scheduling of additional outdoor hockey games, both in the NHL and other leagues worldwide.
Despite the tradition, Canadian teams weren’t included in the Winter Classic until 2014. As hockey is more than just our national sport – it’s closer to the beating heart of the nation – it was only suitable that the game that first brought the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Classic broke NHL attendance records (105,000 attendees – in fairness it was only -10°C that day, which is Spring for us). Since then, watching this on January 1st is a holiday staple.
(By the way, the Maple Leafs won!)
In 1954, the first successful kidney transplant is performed by J. Hartwell Harrison and Joseph Murray. The healthy kidney was donated by Ronald Herrick, to his identical twin brother Richard, who was dying of chronic nephritis. The operation lasted five and a half hours. Richard lived for eight more years following the operation.