All Eyes On Buffalo and Niagara University
On Dec. 26, all eyes will be on Buffalo and Lewiston as USA Hockey’s 2011 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship will be playing in those two cities. The World Junior
Championship has not been held on U.S. soil since 2005. It’s never been hosted in Buffalo.
Emily Mahon, a Buffalo resident, stated, “Although I am not a huge hockey fan, it is still very exciting to see such a famous event come to Buffalo; I might even go see a game, just to say Iwas there.”
The community has the chance to go root on Team USA, in hopes of witnessing them defend their gold medal. Team USA has never won back-to-back gold medals and has never won a gold
medal on their home turf.
The World Junior Championship is a 10-day, international tournament where 31 games are played. It features the best male players under the age of 20. In addition, 10 different countries will be represented.
The tournament will begin on Dec. 26 and end on Jan. 5, 2011. Games will be played at HSBC Arena and at Dwyer Arena.
Niagara University’s Dwyer Arena was selected by the Buffalo Sabres as the second facility. Some of the best young hockey talent from around the world will play right here on campus.
The World Junior Championship is a highly anticipated event for the community.
“The Sabres are a first-class organization, and the participants and fans from around the world will have the chance to experience that firsthand. Buffalo is a wonderful city and we could not be more pleased to be bringing the World Juniors to Western New York,” said Ron DeGregorio, president of USA Hockey. An estimated 300,000 to 400,000 fans are expected to attend the tournament. Niagara University student Jason Gentzke stated, “I went to the Winter Classic and I plan to go to one of the World Junior tournament games. It’s something I will be able to tell my kids about. These sort of historic events are things you don’t ever forget; you buy a souvenir or two and take lots of pictures.”
The tournament won’t be the first time Western New York makes hockey history. On Jan. 1, 2008, the National Hockey League hosted the Winter Classic game in Buffalo. It was the first time an outdoor, NHL hockey game was played in the USA. More than 70,000 fans came out on a cold winter day to watch the Buffalo Sabres play against the Pittsburgh Penguins. A majority of the IIHF games will be played at HSBC Arena, including all Group A games and all Canada games. The rest of the group stage games will be played at Dwyer Arena. Currently, NU is set to host a total of 10 games: six preliminary-round games and four playoff and medal round games.
Ticket packages can be purchased for $23 or more a game.
Gold packages are $40 per seat/game. The total for all 31 games comes to $1,240.
Silver packages are $39.66 per seat/game, with the total package cost of $833.
Bronze packages are $23.48 per seat/game, with a total package cost of $493.
For more information, visit http://www.buffaloworldjuniors.com/.