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Revisiting the 2008 Winter Classic at Ralph Wilson Stadium

Ralph Wilson Stadium was filled with 71,217 fans for the Winter Classic in 2008. (James P. McCoy/Buffalo News)


With Rochester's Frontier Field set to host a weekend of outdoors games featuring the Amerks, Niagara University and Sabres alumni, here is a look back at the Winter Classic at Ralph Wilson Stadium in 2008:

It was a day that hockey fanatics will remember for a long time as 71,217 people watched the Sabres play the Penguins in the NHL Winter Classic game at Ralph Wilson Stadium on New Year's Day of 2008.

The game, viewed nationally, "was scripted to perfection," said Mike Robitaille, former Sabres player and at that time a broadcaster for the team.

What did the fans think about the hockey game that was played outdoors in the biggest stadium in the area the middle of winter?

"Cool," said some.

"Awesome," others said enthusiastically.

For a look back at that special occasion, view our photo gallery and check out the stories below.


Photo gallery:

From the archives:

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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl |

About Sabres Edge

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |