15 Detroit Red Wings Games to Checkout During Farewell to Joe Louis Arena
The Detroit Red Wings kicked off the 2016-2017 season with a game in Tampa Bay on October 13th. The team will have their home opener on October 17th welcoming the Ottawa Senators. This season is extra special for the Red Wings and fans as it marks the last time the Red Wings will play their home games at the Joe Louis Arena.
Earlier this year we highlighted several games you don’t want to miss in October and November as part of our A to Z Fall Guide to Michigan. We also listed Joe Louis Arena as one of 16 Detroit attractions to visit in 2016.
Fans will want to make the trip, or multiple trips, to say their farewells to the Joe Louis Arena, and also take in some great hockey. The team will celebrate in style, with dedicated games for some of the best teams in Red Wings history, and a promotional giveaway schedule that is one of the best I’ve ever seen.
Here are games we think are the best to attend for the 2016-2017 Farewell to the Joe season:
- October 17th (Ottawa Senators) – Home opener of the farewell season, rally towels to all fans, and Gordie Howe posters to all fans
- October 25th (Carolina Hurricanes) – Dylan Larkin Bobblehead giveaway to the first 5,000 fans
- November 4th (Winnipeg Jets) – Gordie Howe Statue Replica to the first 5,000 fans. One of the most famous items inside Joe Louis Arena is the statue inside the entrance that pays tribute to one of the greatest hockey players of all time. This is your opportunity to get a replica of that statue.
- November 29th (Dallas Stars) – Ted Lindsay State Replica to the first 5,000 fans. This is a replica of the 2008 statue unveiled to honor one of the greatest Red Wings of all time.
- December 5th (Los Angeles Kings) – Joe Louis Area Championship Banner Flag to the first 5,000 fans
- December 27th (Buffalo Sabres) – 1997 Championship Celebration Locker Room Hat to the first 5,000 fans
- January 18th (Boston Bruins) – 1998 Championship Celebration Poster to the first 5,000 fans
- January 31st (New Jersey Devils) – Retired Jersey Banner Flag to the first 5,000 fans
- February 7th (Columbus Blue Jackets) – 2002 Championship Celebration Poster to the first 5,000 fans
- February 21st (New York Islanders) – Alex Delvecchio Statue Replica to the first 5,000 fans
- March 18th (Colorado Avalanche) – There is no giveaway this game, but is the only home game against the Colorado Avalanche. For anyone who grew up in the 90s, you saw the heated rivalry between the two teams and looked forward to these matchups. This will be the last time the Avalanche play at Joe Louis Arena. Too bad Patrick Roy isn’t still coaching the Avalanche.
- March 20th (Buffalo Sabres) – 2008 Championship Celebration Poster to the first 5,000 fans
- April 1st (Toronto Maple Leafs) – This is the only home game for the Toronto Maple Leafs this season at the Joe. This marks a great Original Six matchup of a team that played many games at Joe Louis Arena. Mike Babcock, who coached the Wings to a Stanley Cup, now coaches the Maple Leafs. There could be a great tribute this game to Babcock and that team.
- April 8th (Montreal Canadiens) – Joe Louis Arena Mini Replica to the first 10,000 fans. This is the night before the last game played during the regular season at Joe Louis Arena. However, to me this might be the one of the two to go to, since tickets will be cheaper and easier to get, the giveaway is better, and the team plays an Original Six matchup.
- April 9th (New Jersey Devils) – Farewell to the Joe Mini Stick giveaway to all fans. This is the last home game during the regular season to be played at Joe Louis Arena.
As you see, the promotional schedule is heavy on tributes to Stanley Cup winning teams and replicas of statues that pay tribute to the great Joe Louis Arena and the players that led the Red Wings to success. We chose to feature these games as great ones to attend to get the great giveaways. We have also picked many Original Six matchups, as with the closing of any arena, it brings back old memories through the years.
We look forward to attending games this season and saying goodbye to the Joe Louis Arena. Also consider coming to Grand Rapids for Grand Rapids Griffins games to see future Red Wings stars and also get great giveaways and promotional games like Star Wars Night (an event the Red Wings don’t do). Here was our list of 15 Grand Rapids Griffins games not to miss.
Let’s Go Wings!