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the admiral

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What if there's a Predators fan living in Chicago (or has a ChicagoLand cell number)...does he have to prove he's a Predators fan by doing some sort of pop quiz?

I'm sure there's some Minute to Win it Nashville style for them.

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"how's your Legwand?"

I was wondering what my team's name would be for my public league fantasy football team this year.

I was trying to pick between "Team Shenanigans", "Fat Eddie Lacy", and "Touched By An Uncle" (my old trivia team's name)....but "How's Your Legwand?" has potential....

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It's social engineering at the NHL level. It's sad to see teams resorting to it, especially teams like the Blues who shouldn't have to do this.

This feels kinda familiar, lol. But basically when you've got a bandwagon...errr fanbase... As big as the one operating out of Chicago and on southward, this is going to happen. Their market has more money and tickets to Hawks games are ridiculously priced.

The "Tony Amonte's name sounds familiar so I've been a fan for life" crowd (and also some truly good fans who I'm wrongly painting with a broad brush) jump on the chance to get some cheap seats in a relatively close locale.

It's not like the Blues don't do we'll at the gate. Or like the seats wouldn't be full of Blues fans if Hawks fans just didn't by seats. Or like Hawks fans have been doing this for decades. But a massive market with money got motivated with success, and they jump very quickly on the opportunity to take a short trip and see a good game.

In this case, it's just market realities. If the Hawks weren't fresh off Stanley Cups it wouldn't happen to this degree (or if the Blues won one maybe it also wouldn't--but I'm not suggesting they should have to), but like I said, it's really just the nature of the markets. It's going to happen. I don't really mind coming up with a sales plan to dissuade it or at least make a buck off it if you can't stop it.

If there are bandwagon 'Hawks fans in areas that should be saturated with Blues fans then it's on the Blues to win them over. That's how you pack an arena with your fans. You win, and you convert the people on the fence. This sort of thing seems like an attempt to artificially prop up the team's fanbase. The Blues have a dedicated, supportive fanbase in St. Louis. We've established that. Which is why it's so unexpected coming from them. Nashville? An inconsistent team in a non-traditional market that's still (relatively) new. Ok, I can see that. I may think it's ridiculous, but I can see it. The Blues though? Come on.

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I think the Blues have more of an illusion of consistency than actual consistency. The more you read about their history, it seems like they've been on the verge of collapse/relocation almost constantly. Yes, there was a long period where they made the playoffs every year, but that period's long over, and it also coincided with a time when 16 of 21 were making the tournament for over a decade. The fanbase is increasingly fickle, and ownership might be out of money for the nth time in 46 years.

If they went, I think a large portion of St. Louis' sports fandom would have little-to-no trouble adjusting to life in a one=sport town.

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I think the Blues have more of an illusion of consistency than actual consistency. The more you read about their history, it seems like they've been on the verge of collapse/relocation almost constantly. Yes, there was a long period where they made the playoffs every year, but that period's long over, and it also coincided with a time when 16 of 21 were making the tournament for over a decade. The fanbase is increasingly fickle, and ownership might be out of money for the nth time in 46 years.

If they went, I think a large portion of St. Louis' sports fandom would have little-to-no trouble adjusting to life in a one=sport town.

I've never been a diehard NHL fan, but I was pretty big into the Sabres (and the league in general) in the late 90s through the 2004 lockout.

My perception of the St. Louis Blues is that Gretzky played for them for a bit and Al MacInnis had a really fast slapshot.

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They also had Brett Hull and Chris Pronger in their respective primes, plus Joel Quenneville back when he was hockey's designated Elite Coach Who Can't Win The Big One. Every sport has one.

But seriously, why can't the Blues make it work on the level that they should? Somehow, owning this team is a license to lose money. Even the Wal-Mart heirs got tired of putting money into it.

It doesn't add up. The team is good more often than not. They're really good right now! It's one of the better hockey atmospheres, probably one of the closest to Old-Time Hockey that you're going to find nowadays. The demographics and civic pride are just about where they're supposed to be for supporting hockey. There's sh't else to do there from November to March. The crowds are fairly big, but it's a big arena, so maybe that throws the supply/demand curves out of whack. I just don't get what the problem is. I want the Blues to be successful (to the extent that their success doesn't preclude the Blackhawks' greater success), so it's frustrating.

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I think 46 years is too long a date to leave.

I can think of a lot of teams that moved after being somewhere for 40+ years. The Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giants, Chicago Cardinals, St. Louis Browns, Seattle Supersonics, etc.

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I think 46 years is too long a date to leave.

I can think of a lot of teams that moved after being somewhere for 40+ years. The Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giants, Chicago Cardinals, St. Louis Browns, Seattle Supersonics, etc.

Los Angeles Rams...

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I think 46 years is too long a date to leave.

Your opinion is invalid.

The Rams are a slightly different story. If Georgia Frontiere never owned the team, they would've never moved to St. Louis.

No - but we might be talking about the Indianapolis Rams then.

Sorry - my way outdated company-supplied (meaning I can't update the damn thing) browser isn't allowing me to edit posts.

Of course I'm referring to the Irsay family owning the Rams - prior to swapping franchises with Georgia's then-hubby Carroll Rosenblum who at that time owned the Colts.

Then again - perhaps all NFL franchise shifts in the post-merger era could be traced to Rosenblum marrying Frontiere - that's the first domino, with them trading franchises (I heard she wanted to be in LA/Hollywood at that time).

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The Blues have a great and demented history.

Lots of great hockey. Never the greatest hockey. Some stupid and bizarre personnel decisions. Some really weird ownership situations.

And it's hard to get a grasp on what this fan base is. It's big and overshadowed. It's committed and flakey. I dunno.

I think it may be an issue of population and income right now. St. Louis is the 19th largest MSA, but has just the 65th highest income of metro regions. That means tickets have to be cheaper than other cities (and they are). But they don't get to use that as a reason why Alex Pietrangelo should take $5 million a year in St. Louis and not $7 million like his comparable peers.

This market is trending up, so hopefully there's some advancement in that, but it will be long-term. There needs to be a solution, though, because the Blues need higher ticket prices to make money. I'd like to see them continue to raise them. We don't know that fans won't buy pricier tickets. They've been low for so long. Now that the team is a contender again, I say raise the prices. They had to slash them when the team was awful coming out of the first lockout because duh. But now they're in a better spot. See what you can get.

I do hope, in addition to my own enjoyment, that this organization can finally win a Stanley Cup. It absolutely shouldn't be a requirement to have a good fan base (of course, I'd argue "good" is exactly what we've got), but you definitely hear the rumblings... the casual fans are frustrated with the underachievement. A lot of those fans were won back in years like 08-09 and 11-12, when teams the teams overachieved at a very enjoyable level. It didn't matter that they didn't win the Cup, they played beyond expectations. Fans responded.

But for all those consecutive playoff years prior to the first lockout, the Blues only advanced past the 2nd round once. And now the expectations are finally back, and they responded last year with a 2nd round collapse. Playoff underachieving is the norm, and the reality is finally doing the opposite might turn enough enough casuals into diehards that the economic issues of this team are solved for quite some time. It might be the difference between selling our or nearly selling out most games (as they do now) and selling out games well in advance and at a higher ticket price.

That can be read as a flimsy excuse if that's how you choose to, but let me restate that winning a Cup should absolutely not be mandatory to having a good fan base. The product has been consistently good, and that's really all that should be needed. I'm just suggesting that if they could win a Cup, they might finally cross over that line to economic sustainability.

As for the original issue that brought this up, I'm not sure that much of the above is relevant. I didn't mean that there's a lot of Blackhawks fans in territory that should be Blues fans. I just meant that there's an expanded Blackhawks fan base due to their winning, and any Hawks fans from Chicago to the suburbs and on down south a bit (but still well within the Chicago sports media footprint) find St. Louis as a relatively short-trip to watch a good game at much cheaper tickets than at the United Center.

It's not like the Rams situation discussed in the other thread where you've got lots of Chicago fans just outside of the St. Louis metro. It's just that you've now got tons of Blackhawks "fans", and so naturally more of them will travel the 3 to 6 hours to see their bestest team ever.

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