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New Hockey League Idea?


CZzyzx41

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I was thinking. Why not bring the NHL back to 22 teams using mostly Canadian Teams?

Clarence Campbell Conference

Norris Division

Chicago

Detroit

Hamilton

Minnesota

Toronto

Smythe Division

Calgary

Edmonton

Regina

Seattle

Vancouver

Winnipeg

Prince of Whales Conference

Adams Division

Boston

Buffalo

Hartford

Montreal

Quebec

Patrick Division

Halifax

New York

Ottawa

Philadelphia

Pittsburgh

Washington

OR just a Major Hockey League using only Canadian Cities?

Just an idea since I know so little bout Canadian cities:

Western Division

Calgary

Edmonton

Medicine Hat

Regina

Saskatoon

Surrey

Vancouver

Winnipeg

Eastern Division

Halifax

Hamilton

London

Montreal

North York

Ottawa

Quebec

Toronto

Either way I say the league gets a big contract with the CBC. I may be a citizen of San Diego but I believe expansion in the United States alone ('cept Ottawa) and the fact that most Americans don't care about Hockey (there are some of us fans out there) is part of the reason the NHL isn't thriving. Perhaps we just have a single US Division that includes cities like Boston, New York, Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and other cities where kids grow up playing hockey. Obviously LA, Dallas, Phoenix, Nashville, Tampa Bay, and San Jose are not those cities. I think America helped kill the NHL. Well that and owner stupidity (they can't control themselves so they want a cap so they can't be talked into paying big contracts) and greedy players (hey why not?). Either way I want to see major league caliber hockey later this year. I don't care how it happens but I thought maybe these ideas were worth kicking around even if they're completely unrealistic.

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Prince of Whales?

Anyway you gotta have a majority of the teams in America, that's just the truth. Medicine Hat, North York, and Surrey are cities that can't possibly be all that big. I don't think anyone would be able to find them on a map. We're asking a lot of our fellow Americans to find Winnipeg.

Anyway, the cities that would be qualified to host the NHL in Canada would be Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton (as they are now), Winnipeg (as they were), Quebec City (ditto), Halifax (a reach but could be possible), and I'd say Hamilton but the proximity to Buffalo and Toronto hurts.

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Medicine Hat, North York, and Surrey are cities that can't possibly be all that big. I don't think anyone would be able to find them on a map. We're asking a lot of our fellow Americans to find Winnipeg.

I can find them all on a map, and I've been in all of them.

But I agree on your point...

There are other cities in Canada that would be better if you took it Canadian.

Surrey is part of the larger mainland in BC. So is Vancouver proper...

If you want to add in BC--I'd say in the Okanagan--although that has the size issue to a degree.

Medicine Hat--Red Deer would make more sense--but it's location between Calgary & Edmonton could present problems.

If you went all Canada--go with WIndsor instead of North York.

Maybe you could draw from Detroit, the same as Detroit draws fans from Windsor...

Still I doubt a Canadian league of that size would be feasible...

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Medicine Hat, North York, and Surrey are cities that can't possibly be all that big. I don't think anyone would be able to find them on a map. We're asking a lot of our fellow Americans to find Winnipeg.

I could find them all on a map--and have been to all of them.

Surrey makes the least sense due to it being in the Canucks territory in BC's lower mainland.

And if you go all Canada--try Windsor...

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Medicine Hat? Surrey? Regina? Saskatoon? Halifax? London? North York? Windsor? Get real, guys. The NHL has a tough enough time cutting it financially in Edmonton, Ottawa, Calgary and Vancouver. The chairman of the Oilers went on record as saying that he would either relocate or fold the franchise if a salary cap wasn't implemented. Believe me, his possible relocation targets weren't in Canada.

The NHL is trapped between a rock and a hard place. The league desperately wants to maintain its place as one of North America's "Big Four" sports leagues. In order to do so perception-wise, it must have a significant presence throughout the United States. If you think that the U.S. television deals it has now (both broadcast and cable) are bad, what do you think the league is going to be able to negotiate if it shrinks its U.S. footprint? How many major companies would want to be corporate partners with a league whose U.S. presence was largely Northeast/Rust Belt regional?

Ahhh... but there's the problem. The NHL may well be nothing more than a Canadian/Regional U.S. league. It may be that widespread support for the game in the United States doesn't exist, at least not to the extent of the NFL, MLB and the NBA. Hell, to the extent that NASCAR enjoys. In which case, NHL fans should prepare themselves for the fact that their league of choice is a "niche" sport. More importantly, they should prepare themselves for the type of treatment "niche" sports receive: reduced coverage in the national media, etc.

Bottom line? It seems that a lot of the "die-hard" fans out here want to see the NHL set up as a largely Canadian enterprise with a few U.S. outposts, or returned to its so-called "Original Six" glory days. However, they'll still want it to be treated by the sports media as if it were on par with the NFL, MLB and NBA. The fact is, you can't have it both ways. If you advocate the NHL pulling up stakes in most (if not all) of the so-called "non-traditional" markets that it is in, you'd better be willing to accept that this league will become the on-ice equivalent of MISL, NLL, MLL, etc.

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Clarence Campbell Conference

Norris Division

Chicago

Detroit

Hamilton

Minnesota

Toronto

Smythe Division

Calgary

Edmonton

Regina

Seattle

Vancouver

Winnipeg

Prince of Whales Conference

Adams Division

Boston

Buffalo

Hartford

Montreal

Quebec

Patrick Division

Halifax

New York

Ottawa

Philadelphia

Pittsburgh

Washington

Geographically speaking, there are some teams that would be moved. Try putting Ottawa in the Adams division and put Buffalo in the Norris division.

Ottawa is closer to Montreal than Buffalo. Toronto is closer to Montreal than Buffalo. It would create the Niagara Falls rivalry, and keep the existing Ottawa-Montreal one.

That being said, there are few markets who could have an NHL franchise. The idea of a Canadian League is interesting, but I don't think the league would drop some of the most successful US franchises.

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Obviously LA, Dallas, Phoenix, Nashville, Tampa Bay, and San Jose are not those cities.

nah, not even worth addressing this ignorance

Wait so you really think a majority of kids in San Jose grow up playing hockey? Just curious as to how my comment was ignorant. I know that kids in the North and New England grow up playing ice hockey but I didn't know ice hockey was big with High Schools in California, Texas, Florida, etc.

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The main point of my idea was that Hockey belongs to Canada and restricting Major League Hockey to Canada and a minimal number of US teams would work. Other than the cities involved, we're not looking to appeal to an American audience. I say get that big contract with the CBC and set up a Canadian Hockey League that is major league caliber and can hold it's own. If countries in Europe can have their own major hockey leagues, why not Canada? I think it's unrealistic because the owners aren't possibly going to go for it, and also because I'm sure a few of those cities wouldn't work. Perhaps Sault Ste Marie instead of North York or Surrey. Surely we can come up with 16 Canadian cities with strong enough regions to support a major league hockey franchise.

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Obviously LA, Dallas, Phoenix, Nashville, Tampa Bay, and San Jose are not those cities.

nah, not even worth addressing this ignorance

Wait so you really think a majority of kids in San Jose grow up playing hockey? Just curious as to how my comment was ignorant. I know that kids in the North and New England grow up playing ice hockey but I didn't know ice hockey was big with High Schools in California, Texas, Florida, etc.

This isn't just about kids, but it's primarily about fan interest. Dallas and San Jose have solid fan bases. Yes, there are kids in those markets playing hockey and let it be known that a junior team from the area (Texas Tornadoes) are really good. They have beaten similar competition from Ontario. Hockey is much more popular in Texas then you think.

Perhaps there aren't as many kids playing hockey there as Canada or the border states, but it doesn't mean that quality and interest isn't there.

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I am all about any plan that brings the NHL back to Hartord, baby!  Long live the Whale!!!!!!!!

Long Live the Whale? The team was called the Whalers, they KILL whales. So what you're really trying to say is Down with the Whales :D

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Hockey maybe the biggest sport we have going in Canada, but the United States remains the largest market for all sports. Hell, just go back to the original six and you still have Toronto and Montreal outnumbered 3 to1. Nowadays though, the league has to seriously deal with the fact that they just won't get the sort of revenues in the USA as Major League Baseball or the National Football League does. Once they get to terms with that, then we start mixing things up and cutting the wheat from the chaff.

Anyhoo, here's my suggestion...

Eastern Conference

Montreal Canadians

Detriot Red Wings

New York Rangers

Boston Bruins

Toronto Maple Leafs

Ottawa Senators

New Jersey Devils

Buffalo Sabres

Florida Panthers

Quebec/Hamilton/any other suitable city

Western Conference

Chicago Blackhawks

LA Kings

Winnipeg Jets

Edmonton Oilers

Calgary Flames

Vancouver Canucks

Dallas Stars

Pittsburgh Penguins

Colorado Avalanche

San Jose/Anaheim/any other succesful western city.

I'm sure we could problaby play around and bump the teams up to 24 or so, but 20 seems solid enough as it is.

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OK I'll admit the ignorance. THanks guys on the education. Very cool actually to hear that I was wrong. That was something I didn't neccesarily want to be right about.

Anyhooo. I like the last idea.

To it let's add:

Philadelpahia Flyers

Let's use San Jose Sharks (as much as I'd love to have a team close to me)

Washington Capitals

Seattle Seals (or would Vancouver just have to be their team?)

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Nashville, Tennessee (not many people realize this) is home to many transplanted Northerners, especially from Michigan, due to the strength of the auto manufacturing industry in both areas. Native Nashvillians may not grow up playing hockey, but a very high percentage of the Nashville area's population is not native to the area.

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