Is Expansion something the WHL would consider at this time?

Discussion in 'WHL' started by paul-laus, May 7, 2014.

  1. Rocko604

    Rocko604 Sports will break your heart.

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    The Rockets are owned by Bruce Hamilton, the arena is owned by RG Properties. That's the only one I can think of though.
     
  2. phillipsj89

    phillipsj89 Registered User

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    Well, It is pretty much Nanaimo's only option. City can't come up with the dough, and it likely wouldn't pass a referendum to have the money borrowed.
     
  3. PCSPounder

    PCSPounder Stadium Groupie

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    But who wants to pay the rent in this situation?

    If someone has a pre-arranged deal and is getting a cut of something, that's one thing. If they're counting on Kootenay ownership to dive right in? I'm not seeing it.
     
  4. arsmaster*

    arsmaster* Guest

    They're probably expecting the current Junior A Clippers ownership to hop on the WHL train.
     
  5. BigMac1212

    BigMac1212 Registered Insomniac Sponsor

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    Aw, somebody beat me to it. :soap:

    Anyway, I did an expansion idea on my deviantART scrapbook page. Basically, I expanded to Abbotsford, BC in the BC division and Tacoma, WA in the US division. Tacoma would play in the Tacomadome temporarily while a smaller, hockey-shaped arena similar to what the Seattle Thunderbirds play in or the Abbotsford Centre is. But that's just my idea.
     
  6. superdeluxe

    superdeluxe Seattle Sin Bin

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    link to deviant art?
     
  7. Rocko604

    Rocko604 Sports will break your heart.

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    Kent, WA, home of the Thunderbirds, is 18 miles from Tacoma. Why would an expansion team go there?

    I know it's just an idea, I just can't see three American WHL teams in a 100km span.
     
  8. BigMac1212

    BigMac1212 Registered Insomniac Sponsor

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  9. BigMac1212

    BigMac1212 Registered Insomniac Sponsor

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    I guess I haven't thought that through. Maybe Eugene, OR, would be a suitable substitute.
     
  10. superdeluxe

    superdeluxe Seattle Sin Bin

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    Yeah, I think the combo of Seattle moving 15 miles to the South to Kent and the Tips going to Everett pretty much killed any of that for the future.
     
  11. BigMac1212

    BigMac1212 Registered Insomniac Sponsor

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    Is the state capital, Olympia, WA, out of the question?

    Edit: Just one more to go!
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2015
  12. tank44

    tank44 Registered User

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    There really isn't a good US market for the WHL to move to.

    Boise would be too far away (similar to Prince George) a 4 hour drive to the closest team in Tri-Cities. Eugene is dominated by the University of Oregon and an outlier about 1.5-2 hrs south of Portland.

    Bellingham might actually be a decent option and has some hockey history. Olympia & Salem may be suitable but not sure about hockey facilities or appetite. Wenatchee has a decent arena and is central but is just moving into the BCHL.
     
  13. superdeluxe

    superdeluxe Seattle Sin Bin

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    No hockey facilities in Olympia.
     
  14. PCSPounder

    PCSPounder Stadium Groupie

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    If you're just talking about market, that's an untrue statement. Of course, it's the arena, y'all!

    I do believe this is how the WHL sees it... but I wonder how much they'd bend because Kootenay is the purchase target. Boise went after Tri-Cities 20 years ago and was told no. I know the other US teams are not keen on the length of the drive. But Boise has the market, the proper arena, and a current impetus to consider their options after the shift in the ECHL.

    It's not that much of an outlier when you look at the distance from Everett to Spokane and Kennewick. However, if a hockey arena gets built there in the next 10 years, it's because U of O wants to get into hockey, and they're not going to allow the WHL to mess that up. Having said that, as the old stadium was sold before it burned to the ground, there will be less pressure on Eugene to maintain that, so there's a slight possibility they might want to dip their toes into maybe renovating the main ice rink in Eugene and consider arena seating as part of the plan. Nothing to hold your breath for, but something to check back every once in a while. The stadium issue was important for two reasons... (1) tying up money in a major renovation was a possibility, now there's none, (2) the city slightly defied UO to give a private group a deal on a purchase.

    Now, SALEM... the Winterhawks looked at an arena on the state fairgrounds when it appeared the old horrible ownership wanted out and subsequently the next owner (Gallacher) was looking at the possibility of Memorial Coliseum being torn down. It needs work, but Salem has some possibilities, has market size Bellingham and Olympia do not have, and is only an hour from Portland in good traffic.
     
  15. Emerald City Bruin

    Emerald City Bruin I-90 W for 2500mi

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    The WHL has discussed US expansion a few times over the years and has been in multiple US cities that no longer exist (Great Falls, Billings, Tacoma)

    This blog post (and linked Seattle Times articles) talks about 5 cities that have never had the WHL but were on their radar at some point in the last 25 years:
    http://www.tbirdtidbits.com/2015/02/02/us-division/

    (Disclosure: I am the author of the blog)
     
  16. superdeluxe

    superdeluxe Seattle Sin Bin

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    TbirdsTidbits is your work? Nice stuff :)
     
  17. superdeluxe

    superdeluxe Seattle Sin Bin

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    Fort McMurray?

    ix 103.7 News ‏@Mix1037FMNews Sep 22

    Proponent: In preliminary talks with WHL about relocation and/or expansion to #ymm. Sounds like that is top choice at this point
     
  18. VictoriaJetsFan

    VictoriaJetsFan Registered User

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    I wonder if Surrey would be a potential spot.....Fort Mac I could see, a helluva lot of money there.
     
  19. Yung Rotini

    Yung Rotini mr. lonely

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    I still don't get why the Ice are in Cranbrook. City is puny and the team doesn't draw well in terms of attendance. Would a better suitor for a BCHL team, imo.
     
  20. Lunatik

    Lunatik Normal is an illusion.

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    There have been rumors of the Ice moving. One last year had Ice to Lethbridge and the Hurricanes to Winnipeg. Since the Moose are now in Winnipeg and the Hurricanes BOG has refused to sell that idea is out the window. I think Abbotsford would be a good fit for a WHL team, however I still believe the Canucks will move their AHL team there in the near future a apart of a future phase of the western movement that league is experiencing.
     
  21. Rocko604

    Rocko604 Sports will break your heart.

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    I don't foresee another WHL team in the Lower Mainland of BC. Abbotsford's arena would be a prime destination, but as mentioned above, and many times before, they're waiting on the Canucks. That said, the Canucks are waiting to see how the Western movement does in the AHL and if it continues to grow. Vancouver is quite happy with Utica and not in a rush to leave.

    If Surrey ever built an arena big enough for a WHL team, expect the Giants to move there. There has been talk of Surrey building an arena similar in size to Abbotsford and Victoria, with Toigo having a hand in it, along the Fraser River near the SkyTrain line, but talk is all it has been.
     
  22. Hordichuk_24

    Hordichuk_24 Registered User

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    It is just talk right now but where there is smoke there is fire. The Giants would love for this to happen. The Coliseum is expensive to rent (not to mention the team has been losing money) and they believe being closer to transit (specifically a skytrain station) will help increase attendance. Toigo has the funds to make something happen so we will have to wait and see.
     
  23. Rocko604

    Rocko604 Sports will break your heart.

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    Would love to see a the Giants in a proper WHL arena. Use the Xfinity Center in Everett as a blueprint. Love that arena.
     
  24. Hordichuk_24

    Hordichuk_24 Registered User

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    I have mixed feelings. From a practical standpoint it makes perfect sense. But I love the feeling of history and the smell of hockey at the Coliseum. All newer arenas severely lack that.
     
  25. tank44

    tank44 Registered User

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    The newer arenas lack troughs and the residual smell/stickiness that provides. But seriously the pee trough and the underground smoking area at the Coliseum was what part of the game experience back in the day.
     

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