Monday's notes: Happy Winter Classic Day!

PHILADELPHIA, PA - DECEMBER 31: A general view as the Philadelphia Flyers play against the New York Rangers during the 2012 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic Alumni Game on December 31, 2011 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Today is all about the 2012 Winter Classic, a spectacle which seems to get bigger and better with each passing year. The game starts at 2 p.m. Central, and I'll open a Game Thread for those of you who want to follow the action alongside (virtually) your fellow Preds fans.

So follow after the jump for lots of reaction to yesterday's 5-3 win over Calgary, all the scoop to set up today's game between the Flyers and Rangers, and a whole lot more!

Nashville Predators News

Contract a win-win-win: for Bridgestone, Predators, Nashville - The Tennessean
This should get you pumped up - the CEO of Bridgestone Americas starts off by citing a FanPost here at OTF, then concludes with a declaration that Bridgestone wants to bring the NHL All-Star Game to Nashville.

Sergei’s Hatty A Sign of Kozier Days To Come? | Predators AJenda
Kostitsyn Mania is running wild!

Halischuk Finding His Goal-Scoring Touch | PuckScene.com
Hustlechuk's hot hand is what kept Craig Smith on the bench for the final 10 minutes last night.

Keeping Up with the Predators in the New Year | ladypreds
If you want to get out and see the Preds this week, here's where you can do it.

A Day in the Life of an Admiral (Michael Latta) - JSOnline
Take a ride alongside the Preds prospect to see what his game day is like.

Ads Start The New Year Scoreless | Admirals Roundtable
A New Year's hangover in Milwaukee? The Admirals got shut out by Peoria.

Kevin Klein’s return a successful one - Nashville Predators Examiner
At least Kleiner will get a dinner out of SK74 for tapping in that empty-net goal last night.

Postgame ponderings - Predators Insider
Josh notes how the power play production has dried up without Shea Weber.

Around the Wide Wide World of Hockey

Flyers-Rangers rivalry to be viewed on national stage - NHL.com
Setting the table for those of us who may not follow the teams from the "other" conference that closely.

Video: Claude Giroux’s sister gets engaged on Winter Classic ice - Puck Daddy
Aww...

NBC/NBCSN Changes Due to Winter Classic Time Change " Puck The Media
Steve Lepore has the rundown on how the time change affects the TV coverage, including today's debut of NBC Sports (replacing Versus).

Monday Morning Fly By: The Day Has Finally Arrived - Broad Street Hockey
Here's the news roundup from Philly this morning, which should set you up rather nicely for the big game.

Uni Watch " Every Rose Has Its Thorn
Today's edition of Uni Watch features a breakdown of the special Winter Classic jerseys being worn. Also, it looks like there are some college football exhibition games going on today, apparently jumping on the NHL's coattails.

Winter Classic game is NHL's little white lie - Michael Farber - SI.com
Count Michael Farber among the Winter Classic critics, in part because of the sub-standard conditions the players have to work under.

Americans get first glimpse of Canada’s greatest hockey moment - The Globe and Mail
NBC Sports will bust out of the gates with a documentary on the '72 Summit Series between Canada and the Soviet Union... definitely setting my DVR for this one!

Flames/Preds Recap: A Poem - Matchsticks and Gasoline
Up in Calgary, Hayley waxed poetic about yesterday's game.

For NHL, the cash is in Canada - thestar.com
In a shocking report, the Star brings news that fans in Canada like hockey.

San Jose Sharks coming up short in hitting stats - San Jose Mercury News
Just in case you were ever tempted to use the Hits stat as part of a hockey conversation, outside of "boy, what a waste of time that Hits stat is."

Victor Hedman has a concussion, is out indefinitely - Lightning Strikes | Tampa Bay Times
Another big name joins the All-Concussion Team.

Scott Arniel questions reporters, realizes they’re right, complains some, then storms off | ProHockeyTalk
It's getting ugly in Columbus. Or should I say uglier?

Canadiens sign Josh Gorges to 6-year contract extension | All Habs
Montreal locks up their big blueliner for a nice long time. He was under a one-year contract, so yesterday was the first day they could get a deal done (like the Preds' situation with Shea Weber, Sergei Kostitsyn, Brian McGrattan & Jack Hillen).

Oilers GM Tambellini not interested in another lottery pick - Edmonton Journal
Expectations are rising in Edmonton, but the Oilers are floundering near the bottom of the standings once again.

A Deeper Look Into In-Game Expected Points - Arctic Ice Hockey
Interesting stuff to wade into here.

Ian Cole has been suspended three games for his hit on Justin Abdelkader. I can't say that I'm... - St. Louis Game Time
The Blues' Ian Cole gets the first suspension of the 2012 calendar year.

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