The fine folks of Conception Bay South, Newfoundland, will get a chance to see Big Buff live and in person in September.
Before any postmortems are written around these parts (and I have one up my sleeve, but I figured I should be slightly less irritated before I write one), let's take a second to look to the upcoming pre-season, and something positive that's been granted to the Thrashers.
Every year, Hockey Night in Canada gives a small town a chance to host an NHL pre-season game. It's a pretty hard-core competition, with each town who has submitted themselves for the running having to prove that they're worthy of the title of Hockeyville. Be it through minor league or kids programs, or general hockey-nuttiness, it's a pretty large honor to be given the title. This year it goes to Conception Bay South, Newfoundland.
Not only do they win the chance to see the Senators and Thrashers play in their town (!) they also win $100,000 worth of rink upgrades from Kraft, and they get to have a HNIC broadcast from their city. I am going to assume that the town with the best tailor and fabric store would automatically be bumped up in the running.
The Ottawa Senators and Atlanta Thrashers will be playing a Senators home exhibition game in the Robert French Arena. If you're interested in why it was chosen, HNIC has the persuasive essay of a local mite hockey player up that was submitted for their consideration. As Ben Wright pointed out, this is the second time that the Thrashers have been lucky enough to play in a Hockeyville game. They played in 2007 against the New York Islanders in North Bay, Ontario. The Thrashers won in OT, 4-3.
This will be the second consecutive season that the Ottawa Senators have participated in the Hockeyville game. They suited up against the Buffalo Sabres in Dundas, Ontario last season. Buffalo won that game 2-1.