Evans Clinchy
Thursday January 12th, 2012

The NHL has a huge hit with its annual outdoor Winter Classic, with the first five events drawing monster crowds in Buffalo, Chicago, Boston, Pittsburgh and now Philadelphia. But it may see its biggest crowd yet in 2013, as negotiations are underway for the sixth Classic to be held in front of 110,000 at the University of Michigan.

Multiple sources told Yahoo! Sports this week that the NHL is in advanced discussions about holding the 2013 game at Michigan Stadium, affectionately known as "The Big House."

In a statement issued last week, Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said the NHL had approached him about hosting next year's game, but "there are a lot of complex circumstances that need to be ironed out before anything moves forward."

Dave Ablauf, spokesman for Michigan athletics, admitted that "we're listening" to a pitch from the NHL, but that any confirmation of an agreement at this point would be "premature." The league is expected to announce the site of next year's classic by Jan. 29, when the NHL All-Star Game will be held in Ottawa.

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