(May 3, 2018)-The National Hockey League will return to China in September for a pair of preseason games between the Boston Bruins and Calgary Flames as part of the 2018 O.R.G. NHL China Games, the NHL, the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) and Bloomage International jointly announced today. On Saturday, Sept. 15, the Flames will play host to the Bruins at Shenzhen Universiade Sports Center in Shenzhen, and on Wednesday, Sept. 19, the Bruins will play host to the Flames at Cadillac Arena in Beijing. The matchups in September will be the third and fourth preseason contests played in China following the 2017 NHL China Games presented by O.R.G. Packaging, which included games in Shanghai and Beijing between the Los Angeles Kings and Vancouver Canucks.
The announcement advances the NHL and the NHLPA’s commitment to grow the game globally, while furthering the League and the Association’s international strategy. The Bruins held youth hockey camps in Shanghai and Beijing during the summers of 2016 and 2017, and in 2013, several Flames alumni served as hockey ambassadors and conducted youth hockey clinics in Hong Kong. In addition, numerous NHL clubs have recently conducted hockey camps for Chinese youth both in China and North America, including the Canucks and Kings, as well as the Montreal Canadiens, New York Islanders, Toronto Maple Leafs and Washington Capitals.
The NHL dropped the puck in China for the first time at the 2017 NHL China Games presented by O.R.G. Packaging between the Kings and Canucks last September. A pair of preseason games were played in front of enthusiastic crowds in Shanghai and Beijing, with the Kings winning both matchups (Los Angeles 5, Vancouver 2 at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai on Sept. 21, 2017; Los Angeles 4, Vancouver 3 (SO) at Cadillac Arena in Beijing on Sept. 23, 2017). In efforts to grow the game in China, both the Canucks and Kings participated in youth hockey clinics, and the NHL created a free three-day interactive fan festival outside of Cadillac Arena in Beijing that included beginner hockey instruction, like how to grip a stick, how to pass and shoot a puck, and how to stickhandle. In addition, Andong Song, the first China-born hockey player to be drafted in the NHL (2015 sixth-round draft choice by the New York Islanders), was on hand in both Shanghai and Beijing to discuss the significance of bringing NHL preseason games to his native country.
As the founding partner of the NHL China Games, O.R.G. Packaging returns as the event sponsor, and this year will be the title sponsor. The company has played an instrumental role in bringing NHL hockey to China and continues to collaborate with the League and its member clubs to conduct various youth clinics and camps. In addition, both SAP and adidas return as event sponsors, and Tsingtao will return as the Official Beer of the 2018 O.R.G. NHL China Games.
With a population of more than 1.3 billion, China is committed to hockey and expects to expand its participation in all winter sports to 300 million people by 2022. The NHL continues to collaborate with sports bureaus across China in developing grassroots hockey programs, and supporting local youth hockey and hockey development at all levels.
Bloomage International has had a long-term commitment to the promotion of ice hockey in China. The Cadillac Arena, which is wholly owned and operated by Bloomage, had installed ice-making pipelines within the arena during its early establishment in 2006, in hopes to host on-ice events. In 2016, the Cadillac Arena officially began hosting professional ice hockey and was the first venue in China to host a professional ice hockey tournament. In 2017, Bloomage and the NHL introduced the highest level of hockey to China. As the sole promoter of the NHL China Games, Bloomage International, in addition to promoting the NHL games played in China, also supports the NHL in promoting youth initiatives throughout local schools.
The League will continue to develop programs to provide schools with training and instructional content to implement these impactful hockey programs that promote physical education, sportsmanship, teamwork and fitness through participation in hockey.
More information on the 2018 O.R.G. NHL China Games, including ticketing and broadcast details, will be announced at a later date.
ABOUT THE NHL
The National Hockey League (NHL), founded in 1917, consists of 31 Member Clubs, each reflecting the League’s international makeup with players from more than 20 countries represented on team rosters, vying for the most cherished and historic trophy in professional sports – the Stanley Cup. Every year, the NHL entertains more than 250 million fans in-arena and through its partners on national television and radio and more than 151 million followers - league, team and player accounts combined - across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube. The NHL reaches fans worldwide with games available online in every country including via its live and on-demand streaming service NHL.TV. For more information, visit NHL.com.
About the National Hockey League Players’ Association
The National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA), established in 1967, is a labour organization whose members are the players in the National Hockey League (NHL). The NHLPA works on behalf of the players in varied disciplines such as labour relations, product licensing, marketing, international hockey and community relations, all in furtherance of its efforts to promote its members and the game of hockey. In 1999, the NHLPA launched the Goals & Dreams fund as a way for the players to give something back to the game they love. Over the past 18 years, more than 70,000 deserving children in 34 countries have benefited from the players' donations of hockey equipment. NHLPA Goals & Dreams has donated more than $24 million to grassroots hockey programs, making it the largest program of its kind. For more information on the NHLPA, please visit www.nhlpa.com.
ABOUT THE BOSTON BRUINS
The Boston Bruins have been entrenched in the fabric of New England for nearly a century. Established in 1924, the Black & Gold are one of the Original Six NHL franchises along with the Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, and Toronto Maple Leafs. The franchise’s six Stanley Cup championships (1929, 1939, 1941, 1970, 1972, 2011) are tied for fourth all-time with the Blackhawks. TD Garden, home to the Bruins and its loyal bastion of fans, is located in the heart of historic downtown Boston and holds a capacity crowd of 17,565.
ABOUT THE CALGARY FLAMES
For almost four decades, the Calgary Flames have been thrilling hockey fans in southern Alberta. In that time, not only has the team established itself as a successful NHL franchise, but it has grown into a vital and integral part of our community. From their on-ice victories and awards to their off-ice charitable endeavours, the Flames have become one of the premier professional sports organizations in North America. The Flames relocated to Calgary in 1980 after the franchise started in 1972 in Atlanta. This upcoming NHL season will mark the 38th season and 39th year the Flames have provided Calgary with premier entertainment. The Flames biggest accomplishment on the ice was in 1989 when they brought home the Stanley Cup after defeating the Montreal Canadiens to capture hockey’s most prestigious award. The team has appeared in the Stanley Cup Finals three times in franchise history (1986, 1989, 2004). Calgary Sports and Entertainment (CSEC), which owns the Flames, launched in 2012 and is the parent company for four other sports franchises including the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League, the Calgary Roughnecks of the National Lacrosse League, the Calgary Stampeders of the Canadian Football League, and the Stockton Heat of the American Hockey League.
ABOUT O.R.G. PACKAGING
ORG Packaging Co., Ltd. is a company that provides comprehensive packaging solutions to our customers, including but not limited to brand planning, packaging designing& manufacturing, filling services and information-enabled marketing. ORG started its business in Wenchang, Hainan in 1994. Since its formal establishment in 1997, it has long been devoting to R&D, design, production and sales of metal packaging for foods and beverages. While providing customers with packaging products for foods, beverages, cans, beers, dairy products and condiments, ORG can also provide comprehensive packaging solutions like high-tech packaging design & manufacturing and all-round customer services. After nearly twenty years of development, it has now become a large-scale modern and professional packaging enterprise with an annual revenue of more than 6 billion yuan, enjoying competitive advantages on layout, supply chains, technical R&D, customer resources, operational management, equipment and quality control. ORG was successfully listed on SME board of Shenzhen Stock Exchange on Oct., 2012 and so became the 1st metal packaging company that was listed on A-share.
ABOUT BLOOMAGE INTERNATIONAL INVESTMENT GROUP CO., LTD.
Bloomage International Investment Group owns investment, operations and industrial entities under the Bloomage group name. Since its inception, Bloomage has been adhering to "quality, efficiency, integrity and responsibility" as the Group's core values throughout the course of more than 20 years of constant development and self-improvement. Through the joint efforts of all within Bloomage, the group now has more than 20 wholly owned subsidiaries and investment holdings companies as well as joint stock companies and several overseas listed firms. Bloomage operates within a multitude of sectors including real estate, culture, sports, biotechnology, financial securities and other industries, with total assets adding to over 50 billion yuan.