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ChompNation

SPHL expansion 2018-19

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I am hoping that there will be new teams for next season! Has anyone heard any new news?

This is the official 2018-19 Season Expansion News post.

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If anything is going to happen, it will be in the next month or two.  Roanoke announced as new member in October.  A year before starting play.  Evansville followed with announcing in February.  The latest expansion Birmingham announced at the end of April.

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2 hours ago, ChompNation said:

... This is the official 2018-19 Season Expansion News post.

Well, who died & made YOU the SPHL Forums 2018-19 Expansion Czar?  :thumbsup:

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6 minutes ago, PlannedObsolescence said:

Why is this a "new" topic?????

Because it's "official" AND because it's pinned ... haven't we been over all that already?  :popcorn:

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1 hour ago, MacGuy said:

And because 2017-18 expansion is no longer relevant?

2017-18 season is almost over......

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, MacGuy said:

And because 2017-18 expansion is no longer relevant?

True phrase, but again, my question was "Why is this a "new" topic?????" when there is already this thread: 

Potential Expansion 

Edited by PlannedObsolescence

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7 minutes ago, PlannedObsolescence said:

... my question was "Why is this a "new" topic?????" when there is already this thread: 

Potential Expansion 

By TimO, April 2, 2017

Once more, with feeling: Please refer to the Replies above from your Senior Moderators.

Pharoah.jpg

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No offense to the mods, and the good Lord knows I may need a psych consult for supporting P.O., but I think s/he has a valid question. The previous topic "Potential Expansion" is still an open active topic which has not been locked to further discussion. I do like JMC's Yul Brynner pharaoh reply.  Doc

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My thinking was: new upcoming season with new potential markets, why not a new thread to discuss?

I can see the value of having all the old potential market lists & evaluations in the same thread though. So, if y'all would rather keep that one going, we can.

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6 hours ago, hockeydoc said:

... the good Lord knows I may need a psych consult for supporting P.O. ...

Skip the consult, Doc, and commit yourself immediately.  You need around-the-clock attention.

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14 minutes ago, MacGuy said:

I can see the value of having all the old potential market lists & evaluations in the same thread though. So, if y'all would rather keep that one going, we can.

"The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision." -- Maimonides

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Quad City is about 100 miles from Peoria.   :hmm:

 

 

MALLARDS TO CEASE OPERATIONS AFTER SEASON

By: Mallards Communications Staff
c435dd8b7a7ae189d493743bcdc96cc8.200.jpg
The Quad City Mallards will cease operations following the end of the current season, Mallards owner Jordan Melville announced today. The Mallards have informed the ECHL of their decision to withdraw their membership in the league.
 
“This was an extraordinarily difficult decision to reach and one that I arrived at only after lengthy deliberation and a lot of soul searching,” said Melville. “In the end it became clear I would no longer be able to make the financial commitment required for the team to continue and that, as hard as it was to reach this conclusion, the time has come to cease operations.”
 
Melville took over ownership of the Mallards in 2012 and two years later guided the team through its transition to the ECHL
 
“As sad as it is to reach the end of this road, the five-plus years I have owned the Mallards have been a remarkable experience and I am incredibly thankful to our fans for their tremendous support during that time and our players and staff for their tireless efforts. The TaxSlayer Center has been a great partner and I owe a great deal of gratitude to all of our partners as well as the Quad Cities as whole. I will always be grateful for the time I’ve been able to spend in the Quad Cities over the last five years.
 
The Mallards have 11 total regular season games remaining and five home games left to play. They will finish the regular season with a home game on Saturday night, April 7.
 
“We will make certain that all of our commitments to our partners, ticket holders and other stake holders are honored,” said Melville. “We will also work hard to insure that fans attending each of our remaining home games will have the same kind of memorable experience they’ve come to expect from a night of Mallards hockey. On the ice, I am confident our team put will forth the utmost effort to win as many of our remaining games as possible.”
 
The Mallards’ successful history has seen them qualify for the playoffs the last five years and while the team has struggled on the ice this season, its longer term legacy includes three league championships and a tradition of winning hockey seldom matched in the sport. Likewise, the franchise has built a proud history in the community through its long term support of Quad Cities charities and nonprofit groups including the Genesis Health Services Foundation, the United Way and an array of others.
 
Inquiries regarding the team or related to its halt in operations can be directed to Brian Lavelle, the Mallards’ director of communications, broadcasting and team services, and Kess Gedye, the club’s director of finance and administration, at 309-277-1364.

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17 hours ago, MacGuy said:

My thinking was: new upcoming season with new potential markets, why not a new thread to discuss?

I can see the value of having all the old potential market lists & evaluations in the same thread though. So, if y'all would rather keep that one going, we can.

Mac, I think it's mostly because the discussions of expansions are usually hopes and dreams, and wishes that never come to fruition. Also, it's :deadhorse:

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Posted (edited)
On 3/13/2018 at 9:57 AM, Oldcat said:

Quad City is about 100 miles from Peoria.   :hmm:

 

 

MALLARDS TO CEASE OPERATIONS AFTER SEASON

By: Mallards Communications Staff
03/13/2018 7:00 AM

I think they're a natural fit...well, naturally became a fit when the SPHL added Peoria and Evansville. 

4-year ECHL average attendance would put them in the top 3 of the SPHL (3,878)

4-year CHL average attendance would put them in the top 5/6 of the SPHL this year (3,278)

Whatever the IHL was, they averaged 4,067 that one year so they would be in second this year (4,067)

It's a successful area that has had minor league hockey for a long time. I think it's a comparable market to other SPHL markets.

Edited by Geekwithabass

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19 hours ago, Geekwithabass said:

... Whatever the IHL was ...

The International Hockey League (IHL) was the second longest-lived minor pro hockey leagues in North America, second only to the American Hockey League.   The AHL & IHL competed for many years to be the primary development league for the NHL.  You might recognize several team names from the IHL's history.

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Winston Salem would be a great fit but I'm not sure how a Barry Soskin owned team would be very welcome in the SPHL.  I think it's worth a try and they'd fit in perfectly with Roanoke and Fayetteville as geographic rivals.  I know we used to have a really 'friendly' rivalry with Winston Salem in the past.  

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4 hours ago, PlannedObsolescence said:

Expansion to the west coast got the "EAST Coast Hockey League" in trouble with travel expenses, and the old CHL expanded too far to remain viable as well.

Sometimes I think travel costs are given more blame than they should. By that I mean mismanagement and/or lack of interest shrinks revenue, and the previously sustainable cost of travel gets the finger.

The ECHL has seen downtrend in attendance that's been clear for the last few years, but I believe the positive spike before that was misleading. (See graph).

 

2012-13 is when Evansville and Fort Wayne jumped ship from the CHL to ECHL. Orlando and San Francisco entered at the time, and all four franchises had really good attendance, with an average of almost 6000. This inflated the overall league attendance, and the infusion of the remaining CHL in 2014-15 extended that anomaly. The teams that came over averaged ~4350 (drop bottom feeding Brampton and you get to ~4675).

Last season the ECHL hit 4251 as an average. I only have the attendance back to 08-09, and it was never lower. The upside is that *to this point* the 2017-18 season is improved. I didn't compare against the same point last season, sorry.

Worchester and Jacksonsville have had pretty good crowds in their first seasons, and the drop of Elmira a perennial poor attendance squad (2300 last year) have undoubtedly helped. 

 

My concern is more that the ECHL while experiencing a lot of turnover (both new and existing) continues to trend down. This is the reality of almost all live sports in America though, and I expect that minor leagues are even more dramatically impacted.

 

Quote

I think they're a natural fit...well, naturally became a fit when the SPHL added Peoria and Evansville. 

4-year ECHL average attendance would put them in the top 3 of the SPHL (3,878)

4-year CHL average attendance would put them in the top 5/6 of the SPHL this year (3,278)

The only caution I would give is that sometimes fans don't follow the transition. Evansville had a terrible situation where the Icemen ownership burned every bridge possible on the way out, but I remain surprised to this day by the drop off. Excluding the final season where fans knew the team was leaving well before the end of the season, the Icemen averaged ~5265 during their time in the ECHL. We're currently averaging about 2322 in the first two seasons of the SPHL. If QC lost half their fans it would make them unable to sustain the team.

I haven't done any other research on teams outside of Evansville, and as I mentioned it was a bad breakup. Still, there's almost 3000 people every night who don't come to a hockey game. It can't all be hurt feelings.

echlattend.jpg

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5 hours ago, Geekwithabass said:

 

Whatever the IHL was, they averaged 4,067 that one year so they would be in second this year (4,067)

 

Ah, the young ones who don't know, didn't learn, or didn't retain their history- :sad:

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3 minutes ago, ShaunS said:

Sometimes I think travel costs are given more blame than they should. By that I mean mismanagement and/or lack of interest shrinks revenue, and the previously sustainable cost of travel gets the finger.

Possibly true, re: sentence 1. Definitely true re: 1st phrase of sentence 2. But ya gotta figger/admit that travel costs are a significant chuck of expenses, especially when travelling by plane, and not by bus, to faraway road games.

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13 hours ago, PlannedObsolescence said:

... travel costs are a significant chuck of expenses, especially when travelling by plane, and not by bus, to faraway road games ...

Evokes images of a team owner dumping a basket full of paper currency out the tail cone emergency exit of a Boeing 717.  money-with-wings_1f4b8.png

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On 3/13/2018 at 8:01 AM, JMC-STL said:

Skip the consult, Doc, and commit yourself immediately.  You need around-the-clock attention.

They know I'm beyond help. I often joke with my ER colleagues and psych screeners  that there's a bed in the psych ward with my name over it, as a "memorial bed", and that I'm out on "work release". 

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