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Antz Fan

New Teams For The Sphl

71 posts in this topic

I know Macon is coming next year. I would like to see a couple teams come in North & South Carolina, so we can have some teams close to us. Any cities you could see the SPHL hit on the east coast in the next couple years

Edited by Antz Fan

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Not sure about arena situations, but just going down the map there are some natural cities that should fall into the league map.  Roanoke, Richmond, Pee Dee (what happened there?), Columbia, Greensboro/Winston-Salem, Asheville, Chattanooga (viable now with automaker Northern transplants?), Birmingham, Jackson and/or Biloxi, New Orleans, Little Rock all seem like places that would be nice for a cost controlled league like the SPHL.

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Not sure about arena situations, but just going down the map there are some natural cities that should fall into the league map.  Roanoke, Richmond, Pee Dee (what happened there?), Columbia, Greensboro/Winston-Salem, Asheville, Chattanooga (viable now with automaker Northern transplants?), Birmingham, Jackson and/or Biloxi, New Orleans, Little Rock all seem like places that would be nice for a cost controlled league like the SPHL.

I was told a few weeks ago that a snag was hit in lease negotiations in Pelham and things are on hold for next year now. Do they still have time to hash something out by next year, yes, but I don't even know if they're communicating at this point.

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Most of the cities mentioned in the above posts are good choices but for one reason or another, none have came through.  It would be huge for Fayetteville, cut down on travel and create some geographic rivalries but, unless stuff is being worked behind the scenes that we aren't privy too, not enough serious work is being done to recruit those cities to the SPHL.

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not really sure  that a hockey team could make it New Orleans,the New Orleans brass folded,because the NBA team was coming in and owner of the hornets/pelicans at that time didn't wanna share the arena with a hockey team

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It's looking more and more likely that Biloxi will come back.

 

Roanoke may be pushing for ECHL membership now that Norfolk / Hampton Roads is coming back. Richmond may also try to revive their ECHL rivalry with Norfolk.

 

Forget Winston/Salem and Asheville. W/S has tried multiple teams/franchises/leagues and none have drawn a crowd. Asheville's arena is in horrible shape and their city council hates hockey.

 

Forget Pee Dee. McBob (W/S, Pee Dee, Augusta, Macon) couldn't make it work.

 

Last I heard, Chattanooga doesn't have a hockey-complacent arena.

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Biloxi coming back next year is a HUGE mistake, it won't last, they're setting themselves up for failure. They've got a new AA baseball team coming to town this spring who'll gobble up any disposable income any locals have which leaves little to nothing for the hockey team. Not to mention corporate sponsor dollars. Live baseball is new and fresh, this won't go well for hockey in Biloxi.

Edited by Seller

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I would give it another year to see what happens. The NHL is in the process of aligning AHL teams to fit the NHL footprint. The next move will be to align the ECHL to the AHL teams. We may see some ECHL teams drop out of the league in the near future. The SPHL seems to be the main feeder for the ECHL.  

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Is Huntsville getting a replacement team next season?

Depends on your GM and coach! :yikes:

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I'd love to see a team in New Orleans again, but... 

 

The old Auditorium was too badly damaged by Katrina, and there are no plans on having the building renovated.

New Orleans Arena (cough - Smoothie King Center) kicked out the ECHL Brass when the NBA arrived.

UNO Lakefront Arena is basketball only. 

 

So, until a 7-10k seat hockey-friendly arena is built, hockey in NOLA is not going to happen.

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The ECHL's South Carolina and Greenville are averaging attendance figures that would fit right in with the SPHL's top 4 teams. That must make it difficult to support an ECHL-sized budget. And Wheeling is even worse, posting numbers that would put them next to last in the SPHL. Anyone see any of them making the jump? I'm sure Fayetteville would be happy to see any or all of them join.

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The ECHL's South Carolina and Greenville are averaging attendance figures that would fit right in with the SPHL's top 4 teams. That must make it difficult to support an ECHL-sized budget. And Wheeling is even worse, posting numbers that would put them next to last in the SPHL. Anyone see any of them making the jump? I'm sure Fayetteville would be happy to see any or all of them join.

 

I remember seeing an article a month or so ago where the Stingrays had a really big crowd and they were hoping it would be a catalyst to bring back to the good ole days when they drew 6,000+ per game.  Now how much are they willing to lose in the process remains to be seen.  I'd really like to see them come to the SPHL and they'd be a great fit with Fayetteville and Macon.  Other SPHL teams are closer than Fort Myers and Orlando, FL.  They'd be a better fit for the SPHL than they are in the ECHL.  Greenville is the same way.  The only 'close' ECHL city for both is Gwinnett but if they really enjoy being in the ECHL and losing a bunch of money each season, to each is their own.

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I have been to the Stingrays ... They have a huge group of STH, more than enough to prosper on the SPHL ... But I wonder if they would be upset by the change? They market like crazy ... I went to 1 game last year and their GM has called me personally several times to inform me of upcoming events and asking what he could do to get us back ... NEVER had a SPHL one do that

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And for the record ... As far as the Pee Dee goes, the board for the civic center has been quoted as saying, HOCKEY will never be played here again. According to them, they NEVER made any money from it ... Even when the Pride was selling the place out in the ECHL

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And for the record ... As far as the Pee Dee goes, the board for the civic center has been quoted as saying, HOCKEY will never be played here again. According to them, they NEVER made any money from it ... Even when the Pride was selling the place out in the ECHL

Sounds like bad business practices on their part. Maybe a new civic center board is needed. 

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And for the record ... As far as the Pee Dee goes, the board for the civic center has been quoted as saying, HOCKEY will never be played here again. According to them, they NEVER made any money from it ... Even when the Pride was selling the place out in the ECHL

 

There are so many ways to define 'we never made money on hockey.'  It's probably they just don't want hockey.  Or it could be the lack of effort by the last ownership group left a negative impression on the Civic Center committee that hockey can't be supported in Florence (Pee Dee).

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Pee Dee has no one to blame but themselves, then. They lured the ECHL Cherokees from Knoxville (who were not making the hand-over-fist money that other teams were getting thanks to a lousy mayor and city council) and promised the owners the Moon. Guess karma can be, you know...

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Nashville tn in the old municipal auditorium ..the rent is cheap and there was a couple local guys interested in placeing an sphl team

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Nashville tn in the old municipal auditorium ..the rent is cheap and there was a couple local guys interested in placeing an sphl team

Can Nashville support both the Preds and an SPHL team?

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Can Nashville support both the Preds and an SPHL team?

There's a very large (and still growing) youth hockey community in the Nashville area.  So there may actually be room & support for a cheaper alternative to the Preds for "hockey families" around town.

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The Nashville area would be a great area for a SPHL team.  There are 5 sheets of ice other that the sheet that the Predators play on (if I counted right).  New NA3HL team in Franklin this year leads the league with a 42-4-1 record.  I'm not sure of an arena though.

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The Pee Dee story is not exactly right, To start with the City Of Knoxville ran the Kees out of town. With the ECHL you had to summit available dates in late Dec. for the next season. As the team looked at what was available most weekend dates were already gone, they would have to play midweek, and we all know you can not survive on that. Pee Dee had made a offer, giving the keys to the building. In other words they booked around Hockey. Same ownership, and most of the staff moved with the team, and stayed with them for the first 2 years. Year 3 seen new owners, and major changes... staff was first, cleaned house.. Keep in mind avg attendance was 5700 & 5500 those 1st 2 years.

 

When I showed up to crank up the Cyclones, I would sit down with fans and ask what happened ? And shut up... Same story every time, they stopped promoting the team, never seen them at events, entertainment was awful at the games, offend nothing during the intermission. The game ops crew was the crew from the movie theater next door..   

 

I hear how it didn't work and will not work now... Not true, it will not work done right, I do not care where or who... And I think we all can agree, McBob has not done it right in Pee Dee, W/S or Augusta.. It takes butts in seats to make it work, even if you have all the money in the world. The City & arenas must have x-number of dropped tickets (not the made up number reported) to make ends meet and it worth while to host hockey. The 1st move is to raise rent, they are forced to do that to cover the lack of income from the lack of people there spending money.

 

No it is not easy, if it was everyone would be working in the front office of a team.

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Can Nashville support both the Preds and an SPHL team?

 

I'd like to point out Columbus OH, Detroit MI, Denver CO, Miami FL, and Cincinnati OH.

  • Columbus tried in the UHL with the Stars in the Fairgrounds where the ECHL Chill became legendary behind Horn Chen. I don't think they lasted a full season.
  • Detroit had the Vipers in the AAA IHL, and I believe the Falcons in the Colonial League altogether. At one time they were doing good. Even Gordie Howe played for the Vipers (albeit one shift). The Vipers were on life support the last year of the IHL's existence as a AAA league.
  • Denver tried with the Central League Cutthroats. barely 2 years. They folded right before the CHL did.
  • Miami had the Manatees in the WHA2 with the Panthers moving to Sunrise. Like the rest of the WHA2, need I say more?
  • Cincinnati had the IHL and AHL simultaneously for a few years, and a divided fan base. As an ECHL team, they, like the Columbus Chill, set records and moved mountains for how to run a hockey team. Like other franchises, moving UP doesn't necessarily breed a better business.

Chicago, Toronto, and now San Jose are going to have AAA and Major League teams. They are the exception to the rule, although San Jose has yet TBD, but the San Francisco Spiders in the AAA IHL were a disaster in the Cow Palace, where the Sharks played for the first couple of years of existence, and remember the Bulls? Yeah, me neither!

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Chicago, Toronto, and now San Jose are going to have AAA and Major League teams. They are the exception to the rule, although San Jose has yet TBD, but the San Francisco Spiders in the AAA IHL were a disaster in the Cow Palace, where the Sharks played for the first couple of years of existence, and remember the Bulls? Yeah, me neither!

You left out L.A. (Kings & Reign).  That mega-city, as well as CHI and TOR, have the economic engines and the population densities to make two high level pro hockey teams work.

 

And I'd argue that the Bay Area is in the same situation.  Their economy is very strong these days (the tech bubble deflation being a mere cautionary tale), and you'd take a drive around Frisco & Oakland & San Jose you'd swear the entire population of L.A. County has migrated north.  More to my point, any hockey team playing in the Cow Palace was doomed to failure.  Before the Spiders & the Bulls (and, yes, I 'memba the Bulls - I even attended one of their precious few home games) came the Pacific Hockey League's Shamrocks, and before that the pro-incarnation Western Hockey League's Seals.  Each of them struggled financially in every year of their existence, and a major contributor to those struggles was the condition & location of the facility.  Those factors were very often exacerbated by the reason for the name "Cow Palace": It was and always will be little more than a livestock pavilion.  So the physical plant - and having to schedule around month-long cattle shows - are not conducive to a successful business where the main attractions don't shite on the floor (Bulls' former owner Pat Curcio excepted).

 

Bottom Line: If the Sharks ownership has chosen to collocate their NHL & AHL franchises at SAP Center, I'm confident they have a clear and sustainable business model for doing so.  It's certainly a better option than having to use the Zamboni for something other than scraping ice.  :unsure:

 

 

ETA: Remind me again how we got here from a thread entitled: "New Team For The Sphl."  :dontgetit:

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