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Minor League Hockey Shake-up...coming


JackieMoon
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So the Pirates leave two years into a five-year lease that included a $34 million renovation that the citizens of the county still have to pay off... without a tenant to actually use the arena.

 

Welp... Good job with all this, AHL.

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5 minutes ago, Still MIGHTY said:

So the Pirates leave two years into a five-year lease that included a $34 million renovation that the citizens of the county still have to pay off... without a tenant to actually use the arena.

 

Welp... Good job with all this, AHL.

 

I assume the local D-League team may have just found a new home.

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From my home, it's roughly 1 hour to the nearest NHL team. 1.5 hours to the nearest AHL team. 1.75 hours to the nearest ECHL team. 1.75 hours to the nearest OHL team. And 5 minutes to the nearest USHL team.

 

I have no desire to pay NHL prices (nor see the Pens) and the team in the NHL I do like (Blue Jackets) are too far away. AHL is a bit of a haul. As are the ECHL team and OHL team. Closest is USHL and worth the money and time to travel. I've seen ECHL games, and for the price, there isn't much of a step down to USHL. They're just younger trying to get to the professional ranks. Instead of seeing struggling ECHLers, I get to see a player like Kyle Connor who is now with the Winnipeg Jets.

 

I much prefer the lower levels of hockey. I love watching NHL on TV, but have no desire to pay the price to see it in person.

 

Teams reference above in order: Pittsburgh Penguins NHL, Lake Erie Monsters AHL, Wheeling Nailers ECHL, Erie Otters OHL, and Youngstown Phantoms USHL.

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I agree. That's the reason why I quit going to Blue Jackets games. I can go to 4 Cyclones games for the same price. I know the ECHL will never be on par with the play in the NHL. But, I get to see a lot of prospects come through the organization. Scott Darling just to name a few.

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21 hours ago, rams80 said:

 

I assume the local D-League team may have just found a new home.

Maybe. The Red Claws' current home, the Expo, seats about 3100. The Cross Insurance Arena seats about double that (numbers per Wikipedia).

 

They could move in there (better location downtown the biggest plus), but I think the more intimate confines of the Expo might be more cost-effective.

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The American Hockey League's Board of Governors has granted conditional approval to the Arizona Coyotes acquiring ownership of the AHL's Springfield Falcons and relocating the franchise to Tucson, Arizona in time for the 2016-2017 AHL season.

 

http://theahl.com/bog-conditionally-approves-coyotes-purchase-p202491

With the Rio Nuevo Multipurpose Facilities District Board of Directors having unanimously approved the expenditure of $3.2 million in TIF funds towards the upgrading of the Tucson Convention Center Arena for AHL hockey, it would seem that the primary condition which remains to be met is the negotiation of an arena lease with the City of Tucson. Reportedly, the Tucson City Council and Arizona Coyotes' management are currently in the process of negotiating the terms of said lease, with completion of the deal expected sometime next month.

http://www.vavel.com/en-us/nhl/639823-city-of-tucson-approves-funding-for-arena-upgrades-for-ahl-team.html

 

The sale of the Portland Pirates and their relocation to Springfield, Massachusetts are expected to be voted upon by the AHL Board of Governors within the next two weeks.         

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Vancouver's the only remaining western team with an AHL club in the east.  Utica may be the next team on the block, but where to?

 

California's a bit saturated, and I don't think a third team in the Texas cluster would be smart.  Maybe Portland could work, as I think they have history in the juniors.

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I concur with Portland, Seattle, or Abbotsford for the Canucks, but Salt Lake would've been (would be?) a good place for a minor team.

 

Yea, it kind of bums me out that the Grizz are staying at a lower level (playing the likes of Idaho, Rapid City, and so forth instead of moving up with Stockton, Bakersfield, etc.). That said, I can't fault them for wanting to call their own shots while not having to deal with the constant meddling of parent clubs. Perhaps if things don't work out in the ECHL in the coming years, they can become Chicago Wolves West if they want.

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I don't see Portland moving to AHL hockey since the Winterhawks are so entrenched with their long time history and Tacoma is out because the Tacoma Dome is such an obsolete dumpster with city officials lost in the woods with any ideas of how to find money for a refurbishment. Tacoma would be a great market for minor league hockey but no arena means no team. Abby seems like a train wreck where teams go to die which leaves Seattle and the Key. With the T Birds playing in Kent a good 30 minute drive in late afternoon traffic from Seattle I believe there's more than enough fans to get decent attendance numbers for AHL. Hell we had the Comets all ready to move in a few years ago until the NHL stepped in to squash it because the Coyotes were on the verge of moving in.

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1 hour ago, Totems!! said:

Tacoma would be a great market for minor league hockey but no arena means no team.

Truth, man.  My own hometown is basically the type of city you could easily imagine hosting an ECHL or D-League team...only without an arena. 

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