2014 Winter Classic Preview, Start Time, TV

Dec 31, 2013; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Detroit Red Wings center Pavel Datsyuk during practice the day before the Winter Classic hockey game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The annual celebration of hockey at its purest takes its latest version to the ice at the Big House in the finale of the 2014 Winter Classic.

Beside being a celebration of an original six rivalry renewed this game means much more to the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs

The Red Wings are fourth in the Eastern Conference’s Atlantic Division tied at 45 points with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Fortunate really for the Red Wings who have been riddled with injuries and plagued by the inability to score in shootouts.

Just this week the Red Wings got some key players back.  Jimmy Howard started in net in Nashville and looked rusty after missing three weeks with an MCL strain. However, he did show flashes of the franchise goalie fans know and love by making some great glove saves.  The Wings are hoping that start knocked enough rust off to their goaltender to be effective against the Maple Leafs.

The Wings also got Darren Helm and Danny DeKeyser back in recent games and are healthier than they have been all season.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are hitting the ice in Ann Arbor with a little more certainty than yesterday.  The Maple Leafs signed Captain Dion Phaneuf to a seven-year $49 million extension.  That ties up a loose end that was starting to become a bit of distraction for the Maple Leafs.

2014 Winter Classic Detroit Red Wings V Toronto Maple Leafs Game Information

Where: The Big House, Ann Arbor Michigan

Start Time: 1:00 pm

TV: NBC, CBC

Topics: 2014 Winter Classic, Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs

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