With the 2011 Heritage Classic now completely forgotten from every one's minds it's time to look ahead to 2012! Some basic rules I am sticking with mostly North American cities. This by the way has nothing to do with any latent Xenophobic feelings that may or maybe not festering inside of me, although I have never totally trusted New Zealand (shouldn't we know more about those guys beyond Peter Jackson, sheep and Sauvignon Blanc)? I just get tired of all the Sports Commissioners constantly pushing for eventual European expansion. It will never happen, yet they keep talking about it.
So here are my Top Ten places I would like to see the next Heritage Classic:
All right Hamilton this is your last chance to prove you are an actual sports town. The past year hasn't exactly been kind to you. There is no Labour Day Classic in 2011, you almost lost your CFL team to Oakville and you can't even get your act together to properly host the Pan Am Games. We're not talking about the Olympics here! The Pan Am Games are a glorified javelin contest yet no one in Southern Ontario believes you can pull it off!
(2) Mystery Alaska: Just to right the wrongs that Russell Crowe and Burt Reynolds inflicted on hockey fans everywhere. Holy lord was that a bad movie and I think the Academy should take away one of Crowe's Oscars just for being in that abomination.
(3) New York:
New Yankee Stadium for the day game and New Meadowlands Stadium for the night game. If you are a hockey fan would you say no to a double header Heritage Classic?
(4) South Beach: Yes I can't stand Lebron and the Miami Heat but have you ever had a Mojito at the Delano? Yeah its about 20 bucks a glass, but it is sooooo worth it. Plus if the Maple Leafs are playing maybe it will cause some sort of seizure in Chris Bosh as he has Nam flashbacks to his days in Toronto. Besides I want it somewhere warm just so that the media has to find original story lines instead of the usual puff pieces of how the fans had to "brave the harsh weather conditions" just to see the heroics of Rene Bourque. I want fresh and new angles like Lindsay Lohan seen partying with the San Jose Sharks outside Collins Avenue at 2am and throwing up all over Dan Boyle ... okay maybe that isn't original but it makes for a better visual than Flames fans in balaclavas.
(5) Monowi, Nebraska: This is the first of my two part series of goofy American Cities! Now things may have changed in the past 24 hours since I sent this story over but as of Monday night Monowi had the smallest population in all of North America with just one remaining resident, Elsie Eiler. To be fair the TV ratings in Monowi would at least be as good as a typical Panthers game when a Canadian team isn't visiting.
(6) Quebec City: Keeping with the theme of Canadian hockey fans travelling. I want to see the Heritage Classic in Quebec City just to give NY Islanders fans a chance for payback after being embarrassed when over 1000 fans from Quebec City showed up at an Islander home game in an attempt to sway the NHL to moving the Islanders back to the land of the Nordique. Yes I know the chances of Islander fans even being aware of such a game are remote but if 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull' can get a 77% on Rotten Tomatoes than just about anything is possible.
(7) Dallas: Maybe they've learned their lesson that you can't use sand to deal with traffic and a snow storm. Cowboys Stadium is gorgeous and Jerry Jones would pull out all the stops just to continue to feed his massive ego. Besides at least the city of Dallas has won a Stanley Cup in the last 15 years. That's more than you can say for every other Canadian city.
(8) Detroit: Comerica Park is beautiful, no team has more Cups in the past 20 years than the Red Wings and come on this city needs all the help they can get.
(9) Slaughterville, Oklahoma: And were pack to Part II of funny American cities you've never heard of until right now. Forget next season, we need the Heritage Classic in Slaughterville on March 8th for the next Bruins / Canadiens game. Just think of the tag line: "The last time these teams met they racked up 14 goals and 192 penalty minutes of carnage and goonery. Now it's time for the sequel in Slaughterville Oklahoma. This time there are no rules!"
(10) Dubai: You think Vegas can put on a crazy show, well I have two words for you: Oil Money! It's like hanging around crazy rich Russian billionaires except you can work on your tan. By the way am I the only one that wants a first class ticket on Emirates Airlines? Sure it costs more than my condo but I'm betting it's the only airline decadent enough to serve me Foie Gras soon after take off, First Growth Bordeaux to wash down my Kobe steak and throw in some lap dances just for kicks. I won't even care if the on flight movie was 'Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son.'