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ChompNation

SPHL expansion 2018-19

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I thought I had read information that the hockey fanbase had dwindled significantly as Quad Cities bounced around leagues.  I'm not sure there is an appetite remaining there for hockey, even with reduced expenses.

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15 minutes ago, Carey Mahoney said:

I thought I had read information that the hockey fanbase had dwindled significantly as Quad Cities bounced around leagues.  I'm not sure there is an appetite remaining there for hockey, even with reduced expenses.

At TaxSlayer Center, it's not about the "appetite for hockey."  It's about the appetite for $2 Dogs and $2 Beers Nights.  Field of Dreams 2.0: "If you promote them, they will come."  cheers1.gif

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23 minutes ago, MacGuy said:

"More than 300 pledge support to next Mallards" sounds more like FHL numbers.

Would you have pledged money toward an unnamed team in an unnamed league though? To find 300 people that would I think is a good sign.

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It's gonna be a LONG summer - for everyone except :Havoc:  fans - so I figured I'd bump this topic to keep the chatter going.  gathering2.gif

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People may care or not, but a local ownership group has surfaced in Winston-Salem, but, any attempted move to the SPHL is expected after next season.  The annex is due to get quite a few upgrades, in particular to the playing area and a lot of building upgrades.  All that is going to be sorted in the FHL until anything else happens.

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On 5/5/2018 at 6:11 PM, ChompNation said:

So will new news come soon? Anyone?

Quad City (Moline, IL), will be determined by May 15.....that's the deadline for a new ownership group to be in place. Their chooses were the SPHL or USHL to join.

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3 hours ago, Marksmen3519 said:

Quad City (Moline, IL), will be determined by May 15.....that's the deadline for a new ownership group to be in place. Their chooses were the SPHL or USHL to join.

The Quad Cities' hockey future is tenuous at best, with junior hockey seeming like an even more desperate gamut than an SPHL expansion.  But even the relative low cost operation of an SPHL team seems to me too much to sustain for that market as it exists in the post-Mallards era.

But I'd be willing to toss an NAHL franchise into the speculation at this point, purely based on League footprint.  The QDC area was home to an NA3HL team from 2007 to 2013 (the Jr. Flames), but they played in the much smaller River's Edge facility in Davenport.  A Tier II Jr. A franchise (NAHL) with a committed ownership & a favorable lease could make the lower bowl of TaxSlayer Center in Moline a comfortable home for the few hundred regular hockey supporters remaining in the area, presuming they'd embrace the very young players & the yearly churn of the roster.  Tough sell.  :unsure:

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1 hour ago, JMC-STL said:

The Quad Cities' hockey future is tenuous at best, with junior hockey seeming like an even more desperate gamut than an SPHL expansion.  But even the relative low cost operation of an SPHL team seems to me too much to sustain for that market as it exists in the post-Mallards era.

But I'd be willing to toss an NAHL franchise into the speculation at this point, purely based on League footprint.  The QDC area was home to an NA3HL team from 2007 to 2013 (the Jr. Flames), but they played in the much smaller River's Edge facility in Davenport.  A Tier II Jr. A franchise (NAHL) with a committed ownership & a favorable lease could make the lower bowl of TaxSlayer Center in Moline a comfortable home for the few hundred regular hockey supporters remaining in the area, presuming they'd embrace the very young players & the yearly churn of the roster.  Tough sell.  :unsure:

I'm gonna go out on a limb here......I wanna say the Fairbanks Ice Dogs and the Kenia River Brown Bears probably play each other a lot (?).

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11 hours ago, Marksmen3519 said:

I'm gonna go out on a limb here......I wanna say the Fairbanks Ice Dogs and the Kenia River Brown Bears probably play each other a lot (?).

One less than Peoria played Evansville, actually.  Last season, Kenai & Fairbanks only played 12 out of their 60 regular season games against one another; the rest of the season they racked up the frequent flyer miles.  Meanwhile, the Rivermen & Bolts had 13 games out of 56 total.  Makes me think PEO & EVN are lobbying mighty hard for Quad Cities to enter the League.

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5 hours ago, JMC-STL said:

One less than Peoria played Evansville, actually.  Last season, Kenai & Fairbanks only played 12 out of their 60 regular season games against one another; the rest of the season they racked up the frequent flyer miles.  Meanwhile, the Rivermen & Bolts had 13 games out of 56 total.  Makes me think PEO & EVN are lobbying mighty hard for Quad Cities to enter the League.

Would you know or be able to find out if all teams use frequent flyer miles (when not traveling to Fairbanks or Kenai)? Since teams are so much further away from one another I wouldn't consider them to travel by bus.

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2 hours ago, Marksmen3519 said:

Would you know or be able to find out if all teams use frequent flyer miles (when not traveling to Fairbanks or Kenai)? Since teams are so much further away from one another I wouldn't consider them to travel by bus.

As this recent business deal indicates - NAHL announces partnership with Bus.com - NAHL teams travel a LOT by motorcoach, either on a team bus (for owners willing & able to afford the maintenance) or by charter.  The following is an excerpt from the NAHL.com website, which supports this condition of play in the League.

Quote

Key Differentiating Factors of Tier 1 ...

Free Travel.  All Tier 1 teams are required to provide motorcoach ground transportation, hotel rooms, and meals for away games when applicable (some away games are local).

I've read stories of 24+ hour road journeys in the past, but the current NAHL Division alignments have all but eliminated the need for such travel burdens except during playoffs.  The two Alaska teams do fly to out-of-state destinations as you might've guessed, as do their visitors from the Lower 48.  How those flights are paid for & by whom are seldom discussed by the principal parties, but I reckon the remote teams must somehow "incentivize" the others to come to play them.  As for the frequent flyer mile accounts that I cited, I'd be surprised if the Alaska teams don't take advantage of such savings whenever they can.

That's what I know and/or was able to find out.  nicetalking.gif

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I have a feeling that we are going to see Quad City in the SPHL, due to fact that Evansville and Peoria need a closer team to play to help with travel cost.  I may be wrong on this but I have that feeling as it will happen from who I have chatted with over the past week.

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23 minutes ago, SASRACE said:

I have a feeling that we are going to see Quad City in the SPHL, due to fact that Evansville and Peoria need a closer team to play to help with travel cost.  I may be wrong on this but I have that feeling as it will happen from who I have chatted with over the past week.

We will see on Tuesday if the next steps needed are going to be taken.....my guess is "IF" they get an ownership group in place and join, the dispersal draft will be done with-in a week after (give or take a few days). According to previous drafts, results and protected lists are made public around the third week of May.

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1 hour ago, Marksmen3519 said:

... According to previous drafts, results and protected lists are made public around the third week of May.

That date could slide a couple of weeks, with head nods from the BOGs, "IF" a new QDC ownership group is still crossing I's and dotting T's.  Players being drafted or protected could be impacted by a delay, especially if they have apartment leases that run out at the end of May.  But with some warning from the League, they should be able to plan ahead for the inevitable.

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On 5/5/2018 at 6:11 PM, ChompNation said:

So will new news come soon? Anyone?

Well, you got your wish Chomp. Unfortunately it landed closer to the other end of Ol’ Man River. 

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A bittersweet week in the SPHL, with expansion offset by contraction within a 24-hour period. It's a tough business. :sad:

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Posted (edited)
32 minutes ago, Greg81102 said:

I'm going to leave this here and see what you say about their picks.

https://busleaguehockey.com/2018/05/24/where-could-the-next-sphl-teams-pop-up/

Louisville is interesting, but like the link said, I've never heard of them having hockey of any sort in the city. Savannah also would be a prime market I think, another that surprises me that it doesn't have a team already, but again, rink issue. If they got those two, I think that would be a big boost to the league. On the other side, I just don't see them ever going back to cities that had teams like Memphis/Southaven, Biloxi, Columbus, and Winston-Salem, no matter how well the FHL team there does. If hockey was going to work there, the teams would have never left in the first place. Same goes for the current ECHL teams, I don't know if they'd support SPHL hockey, but I guess Quad City will be the test market for that theory.

Edited by TroopSupporter42069

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1 hour ago, TroopSupporter42069 said:

I guess Quad City will be the test market for that theory.

The latest test market anyway. Before that was Evansville, Peoria (AHL), Bloomington (CHL), Mississippi RiverKings (CHL), Pensacola, Mississippi Surge, Richmond (UHL) and Columbus. I think that's the complete list.

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2 hours ago, TroopSupporter42069 said:

Louisville is interesting, but like the link said, I've never heard of them having hockey of any sort in the city. Savannah also would be a prime market I think, another that surprises me that it doesn't have a team already, but again, rink issue. If they got those two, I think that would be a big boost to the league. On the other side, I just don't see them ever going back to cities that had teams like Memphis/Southaven, Biloxi, Columbus, and Winston-Salem, no matter how well the FHL team there does. If hockey was going to work there, the teams would have never left in the first place. Same goes for the current ECHL teams, I don't know if they'd support SPHL hockey, but I guess Quad City will be the test market for that theory.

I must be old as hell. Louisville has had several teams over the years. It’s been almost 20 years since their last one though—their owner salted the earth to such an extent that nobody’s made a real effort to bring a team back, and I don’t think the State Fair complex even has an ice plant these days.

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23 minutes ago, MacGuy said:

The latest test market anyway. Before that was Evansville, Peoria (AHL), Bloomington (CHL), Mississippi RiverKings (CHL), Pensacola, Mississippi Surge, Richmond (UHL) and Columbus. I think that's the complete list.

So out of those eight to move to SPHL after being in higher leagues, only three left. I'll be completely honest in that I think QC has its work cut out for them to make it work. I know SPHL is way cheaper than the ECHL, but being the western- and northern-most team, plus a fanbase that dwindled, has me skeptical. That and this, where the arena was offering FREE rent and a cut of parking and concessions to the team but still coudn't make it work, has me questioning it. They must have a great deal though, because the city REALLY wanted a team back there this year.

 

http://www.ourquadcities.com/news/what-didnt-work-for-the-quad-city-mallards/1049980300

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