What’s a great way to spend an afternoon in New York City? How about watching the New York Rangers practice? Well, that’s what a number of fans did when the Manhattan-based hockey team held an open skate for all fans to attend at Lasker Rink in Central Park on Saturday afternoon, in preparation for the 2018 Winter Classic at Citi Field on New Years’ Day.
Thousands of fans from all over New York and some from New Jersey went up to 110th Street and Central Park North to watch their team take part in open practice. Season ticket holders had special VIP seating and non-ticket holders had to stand behind a gated area, but it was still a huge turnout and everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves.
After a 45-minute practice, some members of the team spoke with Rangers reporter John Giannone prior to the family skate taking place. Forward Jimmy Vesey said, “It was an amazing turnout. The excitement of being outside, the Winter Classic is an awesome event.”
Defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk, who will play in his first outdoor game with the Rangers said, “We knew people would come out for us and we appreciate it. Anytime you get to do something like this, it keeps it fun for us.”
Captain Ryan McDonagh had so much fun, he said he wants this to be a yearly thing. The New York Rangers will take on the Buffalo Sabres at Citi Field for the 2018 Bridgestone Winter Classic on New Years’ Day, January 1st. Saturday was a treat for the players and fans alike, and it just proves that Rangerstown unites everyone.