NHL Winter Classic 2014

Award Winner - NHL: 2014 Sports Business Journal Sports Event of the Year


Challenge

Enable the transformation of the legendary Big House at the University of Michigan from a college football mecca into a compelling hockey venue. Brand the NHL’s marquee game experience with cohesive designs inclusive of the Red Wings and Maple Leafs and also the NHL and event sponsor. Continuing a longstanding role as the NHL’s Winter Classic branding partner since the event's inception, Moss Sports would tackle the biggest outdoor pro hockey game ever. 

Solution
Bridging together the team colors and logos of the Red Wings and Maple Leafs, Moss Sports created bold, stimulating event branding that also included the NHL shield mark and the logo of sponsor Bridgestone. One of the most photographed features of the outdoor game experience was the massive scoreboard structure, which for the first time ever, had its iconic M covered up, instead showcasing a tremendous three-piece 60’x’110’ Winter Classic graphic that faced out to Ann Arbor.

The Moss Sports graphics system for the Winter Classic included multiple large banners, flags, wayfinding, stage signage and rink wall branding, and extended farther out through the larger community, from street pole banners to airport welcome signs. The result was a captivating atmosphere fit for thelargest-ever hockey crowd. More than 105,000 watched two of the "Original Six" NHL teams take it to an exciting shootout in a snowy outdoor hockey scene repeatedly described as breathtaking.  

In being awarded as Sports Business Journal's Sports Event of the Year for 2014, the NHL Winter Classic is the only event to earn the prestigious recognition twice. It first won the honor in 2008, the year of the inaugural NHL Winter Classic. 



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