The NHL has done well with selling tickets at all the outdoor games the past 10 years but they may have a real headache in trying to sell tickets in South Bend, Indiana next year.
Up until now every outdoor game in the US had teams that were a reasonable drive to the venue but Boston is 900 miles from South Bend and that drive in late December is risky because of possible lake effect snow from Buffalo to Toledo on I-90. I-80 is an alternative but still risky that time of year.
Chicago is only 90 miles away but are Blackhawks fans eager to pay big dollars to see a team that is on the downside? Throw in the drive which is not fun as anyone who has gone to a Notre Dame home game can attest.
The South Shore commuter rail will be an option from the Loop but that is a long 2 hour ride.
80.000 seats is a big nut for the NHL and 90% of that has to come from Chicago fans - the logistics simply do not work for Bruins fans especially with the game being on a Tuesday. There are NO nonstop flights from Boston to South Bend and Amtrak is 20 hours.
When the game was first scheduled nobody could foresee that the Bruins would be the elite team and not the Hawks but that is the reality.
This game is going to be a very hard sell.