The National Hockey League announced Monday the Tampa Bay Lightning and the city of Tampa will host the NHL All-Star Game in 2018.
The League's mid-season showcase will take place at AMALIE Arena on Saturday, January 27 and Sunday, January 28 and will include the NHL All-Star Skills Competition and the NHL All-Star Game.
— NHL (@NHL) May 29, 2017
The eventful weekend will take place on the same weekend as Gasparilla, which the NHL is aware of.
"We are looking forward to bringing the 2018 NHL All-Star celebration to the Tampa Bay area," NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. "In addition to the events on the ice, we're planning outside activities which will embrace the Tampa Bay community and Gasparilla events -- as well as the Florida sunshine. We know Jeff Vinik, the Lightning and AMALIE Arena will be outstanding hosts as the NHL family gathers for our mid-season showcase."
The Tampa Bay Lightning also tweeted that bringing the NHL All-Star Game during Gasparilla weekend makes it that much better.
— Tampa Bay Lightning (@TBLightning) May 29, 2017
"We are thrilled to host the 2018 NHL All-Star Game at AMALIE Arena," said Jeff Vinik, Chairman and Governor of the Tampa Bay Lightning. "We've worked hard over the past several years to transform Tampa Bay into a hockey market. The honor of hosting the All-Star game validates that work, but it's not the end of our efforts. We pledge to work alongside the NHL as well as leaders across Tampa Bay to deliver a world class experience for All-Star players, fans and partners."
"We couldn't be more excited," said Rob Higgins, Executive Director of the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. "It's so much more than just a game. The All-Star Game is an entire weekend between the skills challenge, the game itself, there will be a ton of different events."
The 2018 NHL All-Star Game will mark the second time Tampa will host the event. The Lightning and Tampa previously hosted the NHL All-Star Game in 1999, successfully welcoming thousands of NHL fans, executives and personalities to the city.