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RapidFire19

Riverkings suspend operations

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I don't get it, what was the problem?

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What the word on street is NBA G League schedule

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http://wreg.com/2018/05/24/riverkings-to-suspend-play-for-upcoming-2018-2019-season/

 

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Dear friends,

The Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) announced today that the Mississippi RiverKings will be suspending play for the 2018-2019 season. Beginning immediately, we will make full refunds for the upcoming season. We will do everything we can to process those refunds as quickly as possible.

In 2002, when the team was going to close without new ownership, Bill Austin and Doc Franklin approached us. We worked closely with them and the DeSoto County Board of Supervisors to lessen the burden of government by keeping the team from closing which would have left the new Civic Center without a tenant. Without the leadership, vision, and support of the DeSoto County Board of Supervisors, we would never have bought the team. Thank you for the opportunity, and thank you for your friendship and support over the years. Our current Board of Supervisors, Mark Gardner, President, have continued the support and leadership of the earlier boards.

Thank you to the Convention and Visitors Bureau Board and your staff for your support and dedicated effort. Congratulations! With the hard work and efforts of the CVB Board, Ken Purvis and the Landers Center’s staff led by Todd Mastry, Executive Director, the Landers Center is extremely successful, attracting many concerts, events, and a new anchor tenant.

Thank you to our fans, season ticket holders, sponsors, business leaders, booster club members, and citizens of the mid-south region for your friendship, support and loyalty for the past sixteen years. Thank you for coming to our games in bad weather and in losing streaks, and for coming to the Face Off Field Trips. Thank you for adopting angels from the trees at Christmas; for donating blood and platelets alongside our team captains; for throwing teddy bears for Toys for Tots; for throwing bagged turtles for St. Jude; for bringing canned food for HeartLand Hands; for adopting dogs from the Humane Societies; for providing over $500,000 to many local nonprofits through jersey auctions.

Thank you to our amazing hockey players for giving your all, every single game. From those who won two championships here, to those who didn’t make the playoffs, our hockey team gave their all — donating blood, platelets, hair, and most of their time — visiting at Ronald McDonald House, St. Jude, LeBonheur; reading to students; teaching, coaching, refereeing youth ice hockey and roller hockey. Our players have been leaders on and off the ice; they led us from championships to building playgrounds and roller hockey rinks.

Thank you to our amazing staff. You held us together every day, and you put on an amazing show every night. Thank you for your dedication to our team. Bradley, thank you for picking up the reins at such a difficult time. Amber, thank you for always having a smile in your voice when you answer the phone. Austin, Liam, and Jorge, thank you for your positive attitude, and your willingness to do whatever is necessary. TJ, Mandy, and Kari, thank you for your determination.

Thank you to the SPHL, Jim Combs, Commissioner, Keith Jeffries, Bob McGinn and the rest of our SPHL partners. This league IS different. It’s about helping each other, giving back, community, and friendship. Thank you for your leadership during the good times and the bad, and for your friendship through this brutally painful process.

Thank you to our off-ice officials, our referees, our interns (even that really bad one we had a long time ago), our photographers, our national anthem singers, our game day help, puck patrol, and our mascots.

Thank you to Head Coach Derek Landmesser and his unofficial assistant coach and partner, Tammy Landmesser. From your days as a player in a silver wig with a plate of shaving cream in your hand, to your days as Head Coach with a plateful of responsibility, you have loved this team through ups and downs. From teammate to Coach, you’re a leader and willing to go the extra mile for your team. Thank you.

Last but certainly not least, thank you to the Maddox Foundation Board and staff who have supported this team with millions of dollars of investments and an equal amount of blood, sweat, and tears. We could not have made it sixteen seasons without your generosity and dedication. Thank you for your tremendous commitment to DeSoto County and the mid-south region.

From those who were here the first season who swept us off our feet to the championship, to those who helped carry Noah’s casket, to those who are here now, sweeping up… thank you. Thank you for carrying our team, for carrying Noah, for carrying me. I will always carry you in my heart.

Over the years, we have won and lost many times. Every win and every loss is recorded in my heart, as I know it is in yours. This has been a heartbreaking decision. The lasting impact of the RiverKings hockey team, both in our community and in our hearts, far exceeds our original expectations and hopes.

We will join the SPHL in actively seeking new ownership for the Mississippi RiverKings in the hopes that our team will be able to play again at the Landers Center for the 2019-2020 season. I will buy the first season tickets, and we will be the first corporate partner.

Until then, with a grateful and broken heart, I remain,

Sincerely yours,

Robin Hurdle, President
Mississippi RiverKings

 

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RiverKings suspend operations

By Bob Bakken - Times-Tribune

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The Southern Professional Hockey League and the Mississippi RiverKings Thursday announced the team has suspended operations and will not field a team during the 2018-19 season.

Team president Robin Hurdle and league commissioner Jim Combs made the announcement on the team and league websites.

In making the announcement, Combs stated the league would be actively seeking new ownership for the 2019-2020 season.

The decision ends a run of successive years of professional hockey that dates back to the days when the Memphis RiverKings played in the old Central Hockey League at the Mid-South Coliseum near the Liberty Bowl Stadium in Memphis.

There was hockey even before the RiverKings in Memphis, however, as minor league franchises Memphis All-Stars (1956-57), Memphis Wings (1964-1967) and Memphis South Stars (1967-1969) all played in the Mid-South.

Read more at: http://www.desototimes.com/sports/riverkings-suspend-operations/article_be8ec8d2-5f78-11e8-bc64-2b3220cb140e.html

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There is no reason that this team should be folding. A non profit should not be allowed to run a sports team. The Metro Memphis area has over a million people and the building should be full every game. The game sells itself once you see it one time. The management put little to no effort that I could see into marketing and promotion of the team. I have been going to games for a quarter century of my life and I am sad that there will probably not be hockey here anymore. I only went to one game this season since I was unemployed. Wish now I could have made it to more. Honestly it has been downhill since they changed the name from Memphis to Mississippi. 

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3 hours ago, SASRACE said:

What the word on street is NBA G League schedule

I remember when the G League team was announced, there were some prognostications that it would kill the Riverkings.  I had no idea that it was actually happening.  Does anyone know if the basketball team being in the arena created the final nails in the coffin?

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A non profit should not be allowed to run a sports team.

Curious to hear the logic behind this.

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4 minutes ago, ShaunS said:

 

 

Curious to hear the logic behind this.

The next time logic is used in a critique of business models on a hockey message board will be the first.

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So will the League skip an expansion draft & allow the QDC organization first crack at the Mississippi players from last season? :huh:

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24 minutes ago, JMC-STL said:

So will the League skip an expansion draft & allow the QDC organization first crack at the Mississippi players from last season? :huh:

I'm sure they will follow suit from the Birmingham Cottonmouth's draft.......

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39 minutes ago, MarksmenArtist said:

They had some pretty good SPHL level players. Devin Mantha and Matt Harrington, for example. Tyler Green has a lot of potential between the pipes too.

Mantha announced his retirement......though if I was choosing, (G) Green and (F\D) Harrington would probably be my 2 selections from the MRK players if they are still only allowed 2 (since the team is no more).....

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19 hours ago, Nucksy said:

There is no reason that this team should be folding. A non profit should not be allowed to run a sports team. The Metro Memphis area has over a million people and the building should be full every game. The game sells itself once you see it one time. The management put little to no effort that I could see into marketing and promotion of the team. I have been going to games for a quarter century of my life and I am sad that there will probably not be hockey here anymore. I only went to one game this season since I was unemployed. Wish now I could have made it to more. Honestly it has been downhill since they changed the name from Memphis to Mississippi. 

I don't know about a non profit running a sport team, but I do think that the name change had a lot to do with the team demise.  No sity identity and to this day I still call them the Memphis Riverkings as that is who they have always been and will be in my opinion. 

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, Carey Mahoney said:

I remember when the G League team was announced, there were some prognostications that it would kill the Riverkings.  I had no idea that it was actually happening.  Does anyone know if the basketball team being in the arena created the final nails in the coffin?

Last season the RiverKings had a very favorable home schedule with 23 Friday or Saturday and only 5 Tuesdays, 2 were Field trip games or something like that. Hustle played a lot of week nights, also never had a home game when the Memphis Grizzlies had a home game so that obviously didn't help their attendance. Wonder if the Hustle weren't going to put up with that this season and paid the building more $$$. Wasn't a lot of "fun stuff" at RKS games either during each period break, mostly rookies/younger players having to sing songs on the big screen like Celine Dion or something and dumb stuff like that. Nothing special on entertainment, no fireworks etc. Not a lot of advertising and marketing around the mid-south. I could go on with other stuff but I'll get off my soapbox about why things went like they did and not throw people under the bus.

Edited by RiverKings99

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2 hours ago, RiverKings99 said:

Last season the RiverKings had a very favorable home schedule with 25 Friday or Saturday and only 5 Tuesdays, 2 were Field trip games or something like that. Hustle played a lot of week nights, also never had a home game when the Memphis Grizzlies had a home game so that obviously didn't help their attendance. Wonder if the Hustle weren't going to put up with that this season and paid the building more $$$. Wasn't a lot of "fun stuff" at RKS games either during each period break, mostly rookies/younger players having to sing songs on the big screen like Celine Dion or something and dumb stuff like that. Nothing special on entertainment, no fireworks etc. Not a lot of advertising and marketing around the mid-south. I could go on with other stuff but I'll get off my soapbox about why things went like they did and not throw people under the bus.

If the basketball team schedule suddenly has a huge increase in weekend dates, it may tell the story.  Sorry to see hockey gone for you guys.  Good luck in getting something else established later.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Carey Mahoney said:

If the basketball team schedule suddenly has a huge increase in weekend dates, it may tell the story.  Sorry to see hockey gone for you guys.  Good luck in getting something else established later.

They WILL have a dramatic increase on weekends. Other than occasional concerts and shows the Hustle is now THE main tenant. Landers Center loses a lot of big time performers to the MUCH bigger FedExForum in downtown Memphis.

Edited by RiverKings99

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RiverKings say goodbye, at least temporarily

By Ron Maxey - Commercial Appeal

Quote

Farewell RiverKings: The Mississippi RiverKings, which will always be remembered by many as the Memphis RiverKings, announced last week the team is suspending operations for the 2018-19 season.

A letter from President Robin Hurdle says the franchise is working with the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) to find new owners in hopes of a return for the 2019-2020 season. This could, however, be an ignominious end for a franchise whose history dates back to the Mid-South Coliseum, which also has seen better days. 

The team began play there in 1992 as members of the old Central Hockey League, moving to the SPHL in 2011. By that time, the team had long since moved from the Coliseum to the DeSoto Civic Center, later Landers Center, in Southaven and changed its name to the Mississippi RiverKings. 

But things were never really without turmoil south of the state line. The Hernando, Miss.-based Maddox Foundation rescued the team in 2002 when it was near shutting down for lack of ownership. The name later changed from Memphis RiverKings to Mississippi RiverKings in an effort to better identify with the franchise's locale, but falling attendance ultimately helped doomed the franchise anyway. Hurdle's letter doesn't clearly delineate what led to ceasing operations, but falling numbers hurt.

Though never personally a hockey fan, it's sad as a lifelong Memphian to see this piece of Memphis sports history come to an end, even if only temporarily.

 

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On 5/24/2018 at 9:51 PM, Marksmen3519 said:

Mantha announced his retirement......though if I was choosing, (G) Green and (F\D) Harrington would probably be my 2 selections from the MRK players if they are still only allowed 2 (since the team is no more).....

Can’t count out Oliveri being one of the better Kings’ players last year. Is one of the better D-men in the league. Plus a lot of other talent like Tedesco or Fox (even though he bailed right before the playoffs) 

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14 minutes ago, ArmyRKFan said:

Can’t count out Oliveri being one of the better Kings’ players last year. Is one of the better D-men in the league. Plus a lot of other talent like Tedesco or Fox (even though he bailed right before the playoffs) 

Correct.....I see if QC takes two from MRK, the question is "What 2 are most valuable?"...... That will be crucial. Also knowing after the draft all teams will be eyeing whoever is left that doned a MRK jersey.

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On 5/24/2018 at 4:07 PM, Marksmen3519 said:

Mr. E appears to agree with you, '3519 ...

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... Mississippi players, by the way, will be part of an expansion draft to stock the incoming Quad Cities team later this summer.

ETA: A little more on the topic from Mr. E ...

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RIVER READINGS: A date for the SPHL expansion draft, to stock Quad City, has not yet been set. But QC will be permitted to select up to six players total in that draft -- and no more than two from any one team. Those available players come from those who were on teams’ final rosters last spring but were left off 13-man protected lists heading into the summer. The Mississippi roster -- that team folded earlier this month -- is fully in play for the draft.

 

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