Western Conference NHL teams consider major AHL overhaul

Discussion in 'Fugu's Business of Hockey Forum' started by metric, Oct 27, 2011.

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  1. metric

    metric Registered User

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    Not sure this goes here...

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=379050
     
  2. Street Hawk

    Street Hawk Registered User

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    What are their options really? Split the AHL into 2 divisions conferences that don't play each other? Not going to happen. We are talking about small mid-west states in the USA, like Idaho, N/S Dakota, Wyoming, New Mexico, Iowa, etc. There's no NHL team in Seattle or Portland and when was the last time San Diego had and IHL/AHL team. I don't think there are enough markets out west to support the AHL out there.

    That's why, as a Canucks fan, hearing all this talk in the summer that the Canucks should take over the Abbotsford team from Calgary or put a team in Victoria, I thought was crazy. Winnipeg was the closet team to Abbotsford and now they are gone.

    Facts are facts, the AHL is based mainly in the EST zone, just like in the NHL. Better to have your prospects spend their time practicing on their skills than waiting at airports catching flights.

    Each team carries spare players, between 2-3. So, if you ever run into having a couple of guys hurt in a game, you better make the call right away while you have spares, than risk not having any spares around and needing an AHL callup to play in the next game.
     
  3. Tinalera

    Tinalera Registered User

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    I don't know if they would do two leagues under the umbrella (like CHL)-probably just more geographic conferences?
     
  4. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Registered User

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    If travel is going to be a reality players are going to face in the NHL then what better place to learn how to deal with it than the AHL?
     
  5. wildthing202

    wildthing202 Registered User

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    I hope it doesn't happen unless an Eastern team picks up Worcester.
     
  6. CHRDANHUTCH

    CHRDANHUTCH Registered User

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    tht won't happen, unless an Eastern club acquires Worcester in a 'trade', but aren't all 30 franchises under a 1-1 PDC, which likely prohibits any AHL Franchise OR member club is required to have an affiliation, otherwise it is not recognized.....
     
  7. KevFu

    KevFu Registered User

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    What can the NHL really do about it, besides have their owners buy AHL teams and move them?

    True North should have moved the Moose to a northwest city... but then they'd have ridiculous travel for the league, so you can see why they did it.
     
  8. danishh

    danishh Registered User

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    Teams affected/removed:
    Manchester Monarchs (Manchester, NH)
    Portland Pirates (Portland, ME)
    Worcester Sharks (Worcester, MA)
    Syracuse Crunch (Syracuse, NY)
    Lake Erie Monsters (Cleveland, OH)
    Chicago Wolves (Rosemont, IL)
    Abbottsford Heat (Abbotsford, BC)
    OKC Barons (OKC, OK)
    Houston Aeros (Houston, TX)
    Texas Stars (Cedar Park, TX)


    i'll add in:
    Springfield Falcons (Springfield, MA)
    as cleveland opens up for columbus if their interested in making more inroads in-state.

    propose:
    Columbus - Lake Erie

    Dallas - Texas
    LA -
    Anaheim -
    SJ -
    Phoenix -

    Minnesota - Houston
    Edmonton - OKC
    Calgary - Chicago
    Vancouver - Abbottsford
    Colorado -



    so 5 AHL teams would be casualties: Manchester, Portland, Worcester, Springfield, and Syracuse. All eastern teams, allowing the entire AHL north division to join the EC (though i would swap grand rapids and charlotte).

    resulting AHL alignment:
    Atlantic: St. Johns, Providence, Albany, Bridgeport, Connecticut
    East: Hershey, Norfolk, WBS, Charlotte, Adirondack
    North: Hamilton, Lake Erie, Toronto, Rochester, Binghamton

    Midwest: Chicago, Grand Rapids, Milwaukee, Peoria, Rockford
    South: Houston, OKC, Texas, San Antonio
    Pacific: Abbotsford


    now we need to add 5 teams, 1 in the south division and 4 in the pacific.

    south: add a team in nebraska, kansas, or new mexico. Affiliation goes to colorado.
    pacific: add teams in socal (ducks), nocal (sharks), vegas (kings), and pacificnw (yotes).

    final AHL alignment:
    Atlantic: St. Johns, Providence, Albany, Bridgeport, Connecticut
    East: Hershey, Norfolk, WBS, Charlotte, Adirondack
    North: Hamilton, Lake Erie, Toronto, Rochester, Binghamton

    Midwest: Chicago, Grand Rapids, Milwaukee, Peoria, Rockford
    South: Houston, OKC, Texas, San Antonio, Kansas/NM
    Pacific: Abbotsford, SouthCal, NorthCal, Wash/Oregon, Vegas
     
  9. IU Hawks fan

    IU Hawks fan They call me IU

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    :facepalm:

    Very few AHL teams have the economic resources to fly to games. Also, having your affiliate very far away is a disadvantage when it comes to calling players up quickly, and sending 2-way contracted players down to save cap room.
     
  10. LadyStanley

    LadyStanley RIP Fugu

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    Sharks, Stars are two of the NHL teams that own their own AHL franchise.

    So, in the Worcester case, it's just a matter of the lease. (And the disappointed fans).
     
  11. Seanconn*

    Seanconn* Guest

    make sense. It seems [mod] Chicago's AHL team is the affiliate of Vancouver, and Anaheim's AHL team is in New York, :laugh:

    teams definitely need to be switched around in the next few seasons.
     
    Last edited by moderator Hank Chinaski: Oct 28, 2011
  12. KevFu

    KevFu Registered User

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    Well, it's not like the Stars really want to move their AHL team out of Austin, Texas.
    Also, AEG owns the Kings and the Manchester Monarchs.

    So...

    AEG moves Manchester to Las Vegas
    Sharks move Worcester to Stockton (Sacramento's arena can't fit hockey, Stockton has an arena)
    Portland moves to Tuscon
    Columbus affiliates with Lake Erie
    Springfield moves to Colorado Springs
    Ottawa affiliates with Syracuse
    Binghamton moves to Salt Lake City

    Providence Bruins (BOS)
    Bridgeport Sound Tigers (NYI)
    Connecticut Whale (NYR)
    Albany Devils (NJ)
    Syracuse Crunch (OTT)

    Grand Rapids Griffins (DET)
    Lake Erie Monsters (CBJ)
    Hamilton Bulldogs (MON)
    Rochester Americans (BUF)
    Toronto Marlies (TOR)

    Charlotte Checkers (CAR)
    Norfolk Admirals (TB)
    Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (PIT)
    Hershey Bears (WAS)
    Allentown Phantoms (PHI)

    Rockford IceHogs (CHI)
    Peoria Rivermen (STL)
    Milwaukee Admirals (NASH)
    Chicago Wolves (VAN)
    Salt Lake Grizzlies (ANA)

    Oklahoma City Barons (EDM)
    Houston Aeros (MIN)
    San Antonio Rampage (FLA)
    Texas Stars (DAL)
    Colorado Springs Falcons (COL)

    Abbotsford Heat (CAL)
    Portland Oregonians (WIN)
    Stockton Sharks (SJ)
    Las Vegas Monarchs (LA)
    Tucson Pirates (PHX)
     
  13. Pinkfloyd

    Pinkfloyd Registered User

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    Sacramento's arena can fit hockey, it's just with obstructed views. Besides that, if this actually came to fruition, I would think that the Sharks would base the farm team in Oakland.
     
  14. Tawnos

    Tawnos A guy with a bass

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    The only state you mentioned that's in the mid-West is Iowa. Iowa and New Mexico are the only states you mentioned that are near teams. Starting in the block of plain states and moving West, there are plenty of cities with the size you might want in an AHL market. I don't know the arena situation in all of these places though.

    Tulsa, Wichita, Topeka, Omaha, Albuquerque, Tuscon, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, San Diego, Fresno, Sacramento, Portland, Seattle/Tacoma could all support AHL teams. Especially if they're being partially subsidized by NHL teams. Again, I don't know the arena situations in these places, although SLC, Sacramento, Portland and Seattle all have arenas that are or have been used for NBA teams. I know at least Portland and Seattle have ice-making facilities.

    There are more, I'm sure.
     
  15. Tayvaan

    Tayvaan Registered User

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    Bakersfield, California could probably support an AHL team. They've consistently averaged over 5k/game in attendance in the ECHL and the arena isn't bad. Solid option for LA, anaheim, or even sj. You could probably put several teams in California but it would be tough to find good locations in the rest of the western US.
     
  16. crobro

    crobro Registered User

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    what about seattle for the ahl
     
  17. KevFu

    KevFu Registered User

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    I just looked it up. That's correct. Wow. I've been on the floor of (formerly) Arco, and did not realize that was possible.
     
  18. CHRDANHUTCH

    CHRDANHUTCH Registered User

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    LS:

    SJ shouldn't have bought the team when it did, then, if this is the intended result, Texas inherited the Iowa franchise that the Stars left originally when they elected to move to Austin/Cedar Park, nor have the Sharks operated Worcester that way, the reason given WAS THE proximity of Anaheim in Portland, Manchester, obviously w/ LA..... THE LEASE includes a damage clause if SVSE breaks the lease @ DCU, since Worcester is not privately owned....

    Portland is privatized, has been through its existence since its founding in 1977 as is much of the New England/Eastern franchises are, and WOR was burned by the whole St. Louis/Peoria episode....

    how would Texas be owned if Hicks no longer owns Dallas (as tht sale is pending)
     
  19. famicommander

    famicommander Registered User

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    I think an AHL affiliate for the Avalanche in Colorado Springs makes perfect sense. World Arena in the Springs holds 8,000 for hockey and was opened in 1998. The Colorado College Tigers currently play there.

    Then they could affiliate with the Colorado Eagles (current ECHL affiliate of the Jets) who play in Loveland/Fort Collins.

    Then the Avs' two minor league affiliates would play roughly an hour and a half north and an hour an a half south of Denver, respectively. Affiliation with the Avalanche would definitely help both teams (though the Eagles do great without them) and having a more visible presence in Colorado Springs (metro 650,000) and Fort Collins (metro 300,000) would be a good thing for the Avalanche.
     
  20. CHRDANHUTCH

    CHRDANHUTCH Registered User

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    Iowa was tried and terminated, Tawnos (wouldn't be surprised if there are legal suits pending over the Chops/Stars and the arena);

    most of these markets already have existing franchises, or just don't have the support to sustain one(see Glendale/Coyotes), or are no longer interested in pro hockey due to other circumstances... Seattle has no arena, and no state help....
     
  21. CHRDANHUTCH

    CHRDANHUTCH Registered User

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    Bakersfield already had Anaheim once as an affiliate, Tayvaan, much like the Sharks had Fresno, and Stockton currently, LA Has Ontario under its ownership umbrella just as they have Manchester.
     
  22. Pinkfloyd

    Pinkfloyd Registered User

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    I've gone to a preseason game or two with the Sharks coming up. It looks worse than AWA in Phoenix did.
     
  23. Tawnos

    Tawnos A guy with a bass

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    I wasn't promoting Iowa, I was just saying that Iowa was the only mid-West place he mentioned. Just a bit of geographical correction. Although the only Iowan I know is pretty confident that Des Moines can support AHL hockey long-term if they had the chance.

    Key Arena still functions. The problems with the layout for an NHL arena don't really apply to an AHL arena. In fact, the layout for AHL hockey here in Charlotte is similar to the Key Arena hockey layout. There are no seats for Checkers games on one end of the ice. The Checkers are doing okay. The rules for an NHL arena don't really apply to the possibility of an AHL team.

    The thing about minor league hockey is that, generally speaking, the winds can change so fast on you that losing an affiliate or a franchise doesn't really say anything about the market itself. I'm sure, given long-term, stable affiliation and ownership, places like Bakersfield and Fresno would be just fine.
     
  24. Rocko604

    Rocko604 Playoffs?

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    AHL teams cannot go into Major Junior cities, so keep that mind. Seattle and Portland are out.
     
  25. CHRDANHUTCH

    CHRDANHUTCH Registered User

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    Tawnos:

    if Key is not suitable for one league, ie NHL, it will not for any other league, directly or indirectly..... that is also why Des Moines has never seen pro hockey since the Chops fiasco.... why would you knowing tht history..... the only reason why Charlotte is in the AHL, IS IT BOUGHT the license from Robb and his company, otherwise, Charlotte would've stayed in the ECHL, AND CONTINUED....
     

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