Hockey fans can watch live online Saturday as the Los Angeles Kings face the San Jose Sharks in the latest NHL Stadium Series game, a key Pacific Division matchup with strong playoff implications — all taking place under the stars at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, the heart of the Bay Area’s Silicon Valley.
Streaming video for the 7 p.m. Pacific Time opening face-off begins at 6:30 local time Saturday, February 21, with the NBC pre-game show. Those start times of course, translate to 10 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Eastern Time. For a link to view the game live online, see below.
The 69,000 seats stadium is already sold out for the all-California NHL Stadium Series clash.
The Kings are the NHLs’ defending champions and have won two of the last three Stanley Cups, and have made one other trip to the Stanley Cup Finals, in 1993, since the team’s inception in 1966.
San Jose, on the other hand, was granted an NHL franchise in 1991, but the team has never appeared in the Stanley Cup Finals, advancing to the Pacific Conference finals three times only to lose, most recently in 2011.
But the two California teams have both struggled so far in the 2014/15 season, and are neck-and-neck in the race for the final Pacific Conference playoff spot. Coming into Saturday’s Stadium Series matchup in the stadium built to house the San Francisco 49ers NFL team, San Jose sits in eighth place with 68 points, just two points ahead of Los Angeles, in ninth place.
But the Kings have three games in hand, with 25 remaining on their schedule, while the Sharks have 22 games to rack up enough points for a playoff berth.
For most of the outdoor games in the NHL‘s Stadium Series, the main weather concern is snow. But of course, the white stuff can be shoveled off the ice easily, while staging an outdoor hockey game in Northern California poses completely different problems.
The first problem is the water used to make ice. Most other stadiums that have housed outdoor NHL games simply use plain “tap” water to freeze into a temporary rink. But due to California’s ongoing drought, the rink at Levi’s Stadium will be frozen from recycled rainwater.
But melting ice in the temperate Bay Area climate, and the chance of rain during the game, also pose hazards to the players, and to the Kings vs. Sharks game coming off smoothly. Luckily, forecasters say there is a zero percent chance of rain during the game.
To catch all of the unpredictable action, watch streaming video live online via NBC Sports Live Extra, which will carry the game at this link, as well as on mobile devices via the NBC Sports Live Extra app.
[Image: National Hockey League]