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Flashback #81: Winter Classic (2009)

The Detroit Red Wings hold a team practice a day before playing against the Chicago Blackhawks in the NHL Winter Classic at Wrigley Field. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

The Detroit Red Wings hold a team practice a day before playing against the Chicago Blackhawks in the NHL Winter Classic at Wrigley Field. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

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As of 670 The Score’s 20th Anniversary on January 3rd, the station has begun to reveal (in chronological order) the Top 100 Chicago Sports Stories that have occurred since they first went on the air 20 years ago. Once all 100 of these “flashbacks” have been revealed, fans will be able to vote for which stories they believe are the most significant in the 20 year history of The Score. To see all of the Flashbacks that The Score has posted so far, please visit 670 The Score’s 20th Anniversary page.

January 1, 2009 – Winter Classic

For the first time in the stadium’s rich history, Wrigley Field was selected to host the NHL’s Winter Classic.

The game featured the Blackhawks and the defending Stanley Cup champion Red Wings — two of the original six hockey teams in the NHL.

The Red Wings ultimately defeated the Blackhawks, 6-3, though Chicago got out to an early, 3-1 first-period lead.

Initially, the game was said to be played at Soldier Field, but the Bears objected to the use of Soldier Field, citing the potential to host an NFL playoff game on the following weekend.

According to reports, construction of the ice rink began on Dec. 16, 2008, eight days earlier than the previous season’s game. The rink was built with a series of plywood and aluminum panels. The aluminum panels had tubes running through that contained a coolant to keep the ice cool throughout the game.

The rink was left up until Jan. 4 so citizens of Chicago could ice skate inside the Friendly Confines. All proceeds from the ice skating were donated to charities.

The Score will continue to release a new Flashback each weekday until they reach 100. Check back tomorrow for a new one, or check out all of the previous Flashbacks: 670 The Score’s 20th Anniversary »