The Saddledome has carved out a unique place in National Hockey League history

Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
3 months ago
Sunday evening’s game between the Calgary Flames and Philadelphia Flyers will represent a unique milestone at the Scotiabank Saddledome. The contest will be the 1,550th regular season game at the ‘Dome.
Yeah, it’s an arbitrary milestone, but it also represents the building’s progression within National Hockey League history as it nears its eventual closure with the expected opening of the new event centre in 2027.
As of the completion of Wednesday’s games, here are the 10 buildings that have hosted the most NHL regular season games ever.
2,638Montreal Forum1924-26 (Maroons)
1926-96 (Canadiens)
2,330Maple Leaf Gardens1931-99 (Maple Leafs)
2,248Boston Garden1928-95 (Bruins)
2,173Chicago Stadium1929-94 (Blackhawks)
2,156*Madison Square Garden IV1968-23* (Rangers)
1,738Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum1972-2015 (Islanders)
2018-21 (Islanders again)
1,667Civic Arena (Pittsburgh)1967-2010 (Penguins)
1,661Detroit Olympia1927-79 (Red Wings)
1,615Madison Square Garden III1925-42 (Americans)
1926-68 (Rangers)
1,549*Scotiabank Saddledome1983-23* (Flames)
Marked with asterisks are the two active buildings, Madison Square Garden and the Saddledome.
At present, the Saddledome is 10th all-time. If we assume that the new arena opens in time for the 2027-28 season, the Flames have 148 regular season games remaining on the ledger at their old barn. That would push the ‘Dome to 1,697 NHL regular season games, passing the third Madison Square Garden during the 2025-26 season and both the Pittsburgh Civic Arena and the Detroit Olympia during the final 2026-27 campaign to land firmly in seventh all-time.
Four teams have played way more games at the Saddledome as opponents of the Flames than any other franchises: Vancouver has visited 121 times, Edmonton 120 times, Los Angeles 99 times and Arizona (including their time as the original Winnipeg Jets) have visited 96 times.
Including Wednesday’s game with Seattle, the Flames have played 3,989 regular season games dating back to their time in Atlanta – Jan. 20 against Edmonton will be Game 4,000 – and 1,991 regular season home games, with Feb. 15 against San Jose representing their 2,000th home date ever.
Their 1,991 home games have been played as follows:
  • 1,549 – The Saddledome (Calgary, AB)
  • 318 – The Omni (Atlanta, GA)
  • 120 – The Stampede Corral (Calgary, AB)
  • 1 – McMahon Stadium (Calgary, AB)
  • 1 – Yoyogi Arena (Tokyo, Japan)
  • 1 – Riverfront Coliseum (Cincinnati, OH)
  • 1 – America West Arena (Phoenix, AZ)
The first three buildings are pretty straight-forward: the Flames were based in the Omni in Atlanta originally, then moved (well) north to the Corral, then moved across the street to the Saddledome. They’ll move across the street, again, in 2027.
The last four were all special cases. McMahon Stadium hosted the 2011 Heritage Classic. The Flames played San Jose in Tokyo, Japan to open the 1998-99 season, as part of three years of trips to Japan made by NHL clubs around the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics. Their one-off neutral site games in Cincinnati and Phoenix were part of the settlement of the 1992 NHL players’ strike, which included a commitment made by NHL ownership to explore expansion – which included trying out neutral site games in a bunch of different venues.
What’s your most fond memory of the Saddledome? Let us know in the comments!
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