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Winnipeg back on nhl radar


Lee.

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I don't have the full details, but in flipping through today's Winnipeg Sun, apparently a southern team "in some financial trouble" has called city and MTS Centre officials asking if they are serious about potentially bringing the NHL back to Winnipeg.

We know that rumors abound about Pittsburgh relocating, although I doubt that'll happen, but this one opens up all kinds of speculatory doors.  Is it Atlanta? Nashville? Florida? Tampa'd be cool, we could have Khabibulin back in Winnipeg

I'm looking for an online link...if someone finds it before me, by all means, post away...

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Found a link...Winnipeg Sun, January 17, 2004

Dream still alive

Mystery NHL team puts out feelers to Winnipeg

By ROSS ROMANIUK, CITY HALL REPORTER

 

The dream of bringing the National Hockey League back to Winnipeg isn't dead yet. A National Hockey League franchise has contacted city hall to inquire about possibly relocating to Winnipeg, The Sun has learned.

Deputy mayor Dan Vandal received a phone call last week from a representative of a United States-based NHL club, who wanted further information about the possibility of Winnipeg regaining a major-league team.

The inquiry did not come from the Pittsburgh Penguins, a franchise Vandal had courted during the past few weeks. However, the St. Boniface councillor refused to reveal which team contacted his Main Street office and left the voice-mail message while he was on vacation in Costa Rica.

"They're asking, 'How serious is Winnipeg? Because we're in trouble,' " Vandal said yesterday.

Vandal has since returned the team official's call but hasn't been able to reach him. Until he does, he won't identify the club.

He confirmed "it's a team that's not doing really well" financially.

Vandal said he plans to discuss the matter with fellow members of Mayor Glen Murray's executive committee.

"Why would we give up?" he asked of The 'Peg's hopes to put an NHL team into MTS Centre, seven years after the Jets left for Phoenix in 1996.

"There's no risk to us at this point. It's all about keeping the right position to catch a fly ball. Anyone who says we can't do that is short-sighted."

A lockout by NHL owners or strike by the players is widely expected before the start of next season, when the owners' agreement with the NHL Players' Association expires. Owners are expected to be willing to sacrifice up to an entire season to bring salaries under control.

Jim Ludlow, president of True North Entertainment, which operates Winnipeg's coming arena, said it's far too early to predict the city's NHL prospects.

Edmonton Oilers Governor Cal Nichols said he would welcome Winnipeg back into the NHL.

In Edmonton, a group of about three dozen small and medium-sized business people all own a share of the hockey team. Nichols said that formula would work well in Winnipeg.

"Hockey is Canada, Canada is hockey, and I think the game really does have legs here. Under the right economic circumstances, it can be viable," he said.

Former Winnipeg Jets general manager John Ferguson said he isn't surprised an NHL team would consider a return to the city.

"It would be an ideal situation to come back to Winnipeg," said Ferguson via telephone from Windsor. "There's a new arena being built, and the fan base is there. Winnipeg has probably the most knowledgeable hockey fans in the world.

ONLY GAME IN TOWN

"If some common sense comes out of the next collective bargaining agreement I don't see why Winnipeg shouldn't have a team. Hockey is the only game in town during the winter there -- you don't watch NASCAR and you're not that interested in basketball."

ABC sports hockey analyst John Davidson said Winnipeg deserves another NHL team.

"Salaries are going to come down. I'm hearing the players have already offered a 5% give-back, so that's the starting point for negotiations," Davidson said, adding owners will also push hard to curb the entry-level salaries of NHL rookies.

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I posted the link the same time you did  :P

Anywho, this would be awesome...  what teams are in serious trouble?   I want to say Phoenix, but they just got that brand spankin' new arena.

Anaheim?  Florida?  Carolina?

If it's Atlanta how embarrassing would that be, moving the season you are hosting the all-star game.

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when i read that nashville came to mind. alough i wish it were tampa. im living there temp. and that city isnt ment to have a hockey team. almost no one cares about hockey down here, and the game is just an excuse to get drunk most of the time.
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I highly doubt that it's Atlanta. We're gaining a nice fanbase down here since the Snyder/Heatley tragedy and also since Kovalchuk has really exploded this year. If I had to guess, I'd think Nashville, only because their team is below average, their attendance is way below average... makes sense to me.
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Tampa'd be cool, we could have Khabibulin back in Winnipeg

No, it wouldn't.

Tampa actually has a deep fanbase, metropolitan area, northern people who know the game.  My cousin lives there, he knows.  There are team in worse straits.

I put my money on Nashville or the Panthers.

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Geez, this is going to be bugging me for awhile now. I don't think it would be any of Atlanta, Minnesota, Columbus or Nashville, they'd stay for a few more seasons before declairing a moving emergency.

Other than the Penguins, I really don't know about other teams in money troubles. How about Buffalo? (i don't like them, so they can move  :;):  ) Unless Disney is thinking of dropping The Ducks, hhhhhhmmmmm

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Its quite an interesting report really, lots of speculation around a small amount of, albeit very relevant fact. I would support more Canadian hockey teams in the NHL, as hockey is predominantly a Canadian game.

Dunno who the team in trouble would be. I doubt the Coyotes would dare go back to Winnipeg, the owners would be laughed out of town. I doubt any of the other relocated teams would move back. I am thinking Panthers as the most likely without really knowing enough about the financial situation NHL clubs.

Do the Coyotes still own the Jets nickname? I think calling any team in Winnipeg the Jets would be a good move if possible.

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I don't have the full details, but in flipping through today's Winnipeg Sun, apparently a southern team "in some financial trouble" has called city and MTS Centre officials asking if they are serious about potentially bringing the NHL back to Winnipeg.

Where did you discern the fact that it was a "southern" team? That article only said a team in financial trouble contacted them and didn't specify any geographic area... and that it wasn't Pittsburgh. Did I overlook something in the article?

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I don't have the full details, but in flipping through today's Winnipeg Sun, apparently a southern team "in some financial trouble" has called city and MTS Centre officials asking if they are serious about potentially bringing the NHL back to Winnipeg.

Where did you discern the fact that it was a "southern" team? That article only said a team in financial trouble contacted them and didn't specify any geographic area... and that it wasn't Pittsburgh. Did I overlook something in the article?

I was wondering the same thing!! from the article it could be almost anyone in the USA, although obviously some teams are more likely than others!!

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The comments about not competing with NASCAR and basketball in Winnipeg kind of imply that the team is the Hurricanes.

And I read those comments as being far more in general. Ie that the NHL wouldn't have anycompetition in Winnipeg, whereas it does in other places. Not that it implied anywhere. I didn't quite understand in the report who made those comments because of the way the report was paragraphed, but neother possible guy would have official information as to which team it was anyway.

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Where did you discern the fact that it was a "southern" team? That article only said a team in financial trouble contacted them and didn't specify any geographic area... and that it wasn't Pittsburgh. Did I overlook something in the article?

I was wondering the same thing!! from the article it could be almost anyone in the USA, although obviously some teams are more likely than others!!

I felt the same way. Some of my friends and I all had the same sentiments. Theres just a bias (in North BAy at least) that the Southern most NHL teams (those that don't get natural ice during the year) aren't that popular in their cities, or just aren't cutting it costwise. With the exception of Dallas and Atlanta, we all agree that the southern most teams suck, just looking at their track records over the past few years. Just our little conscensious

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i have to agree, and if it were up to me Florida, Tampa, Carolina, Nashville, Atlanta, Anaheim, Phoenix and San Jose could all fold and about noone would care.

id like to see one of these teams kick it up to Winnipeg.

id put my money on either florida, nashville or carolina

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I don't have the full details, but in flipping through today's Winnipeg Sun, apparently a southern team "in some financial trouble" has called city and MTS Centre officials asking if they are serious about potentially bringing the NHL back to Winnipeg.

Where did you discern the fact that it was a "southern" team? That article only said a team in financial trouble contacted them and didn't specify any geographic area... and that it wasn't Pittsburgh. Did I overlook something in the article?

My bad...I was assuming it was a southern team...although those are the ones that seem to be having a LOT of trouble putting asses in the seats as of late...

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