To the Electronic Soapbox!: Why the Coyotes Need to Go Anywhere But Southern Ontario

On the list of things we really don’t care about: The Coyotes situation.  Please.  Let the Canadian media deal with it, we say.  They’re the ones who have truly destroyed the perception of this team out of their own sense of schaudenfraude to get a team back to Canada.  Which we’re pretty much for.  Except for the one detail: They want a second team in Southern Ontario, and a third team in Ontario overall.  Because the Islanders and Devils have such a good thing going, right?

We’re not denying that this franchise needs a change.  The Phoenix experiment hasn’t worked, and while it’s partially due to the climate, it’s almost certainly due to terrible ownership and management, which have seen this team go without a playoff appearance since 2002.  It also has to do with the arena being in an atrocious location, worse than the Meadowlands as far as getting there.

But Southern Ontario?  When all the writers get over the fact that OMFG!  ANOTHER CANADIAN TEAM FOR US TO OVERANALYZE AND ENSURE NO MARQUEE FREE AGENT WILL EVER COME HERE ENSURING A LONG AND VICIOUS CYCLE THAT WILL EVENTUALLY FRUSTRATE CUSTOMERS, all that will be left is a junior version of the Senators, and no one can tell me that the Sens are a marquee franchise.  They typically draw the worst at the gate of all six Canadian teams, have the lowest local TV ratings, and are overall just a meh franchise.  This potential Hamilton team would be even worse off.

Why not Winnipeg?  Why not Saskatoon? Sure, it’s only a 15,000-seat arena, but who cares?  Besides Gary Bettman?  No one!  There are fans there!  There were fans in Phoenix before they moved from America West – and that was considered a bad place for hockey – and look where they are now!  A team in midwestern or western Canada would have it’s own identity, have a ton of local territory, and be something the league could be proud of.

Go where the fans are, boys. 

13 Responses to To the Electronic Soapbox!: Why the Coyotes Need to Go Anywhere But Southern Ontario

  1. John says:

    agreed, and I’m glad you mentioned bad management and the ameria west arena. I remember watching early yotes games on fox and espn and it seemed like the place was packed. Also why on earth was gretzsky making 9 or 10 million dollars coaching and doing whatever else it was he was doing for them.

  2. Leafsfan1967 says:

    Steve what are you on today?! 🙂

  3. Chris says:

    Have you ever visited Southern Ontario? They go to Buffalo just to watch a game for God’s sake. They definately could support another team.

  4. Leafsfan1967 says:

    It’s hard for many people to understand Canada’s passion for hockey. With a properly financed team to begin with I’m convinced that what would considered tiny markets by US standards could and would support an NHL Team. The reality however is that the Bettman brain’s trust will do all within their power to prop up failing franchises in parts of the US before another franchise gets anywhere close to Canada.

    The league will do all within its power to stop this purchase of Phoenix and the first skirmish will be played out in court today…

    • stevelepore says:

      It’s not about market size or passion. It’s about keeping these yawn-inducing teams/markets (Atlanta, Nashville, Ottawa, Phoenix) out of the league, and moving to Hamilton doesn’t do that.

      • Joel says:

        Why does the Devils fan call other teams yawn inducing? The hypocrisy of some. I know they don’t trap as much as they used to, but they will always be the poster child of yawn inducing teams. Minnesota’s pretty boring why don’t we move them?

      • Josh says:

        Seriously? Like the other guy says: Devils fan. You got no right to speak about which teams don’t look good on the marquee, so pipe down with that absolute nonsense. Does the average American care about Calgary or Vancouver, either? Does the average NBA fan care about Sacramento, Charlotte or Milwaukee? Really?

        And since you’re badmouthing my team, lemme come to their defence: The Sens are the *youngest* Canadian team, and were plunked down between two original six franchises who had the turf (and the CBC) to themselves for 60-odd years. You can’t say that about Nashville, Atlanta or the Rangers. These things take time, and at least Scotiabank Place sells out with a whole lot of regularity, and the fans pay a full, high price for their tickets. I can count on both hands the number of US markets that can be said about.

  5. Leafsfan1967 says:

    In fairness to Steve the Devils aren’t QUITE as yawn inducing as they used to be…

  6. stevelepore says:

    Exactly. Because finishing in the top half of the league in goals and that Parise fella’ and the arena in Newark are boring.

  7. Leafsfan1967 says:

    It has to be siad that the yawn factor in hockey would be reduced if about half a dozen franchises ceased to exist. It would mean that less talented players would no longer have jobs which would help the overal product…

  8. Joel says:

    …and Ilya Kovalchuk, Dany Heatly, Spezza, Bogosian, Steve Sullivan, the young Coyotes all just snoozefests.
    Say what you want, but the Thrashers play an up tempo game that’s fun to watch. Ditto the Sens under Clouston and the Coyotes when Gretzky decides to play guys who can play rather than fight.

    I just find it ironic that a Devils fan is complaining about other teams being boring, when they were the inventors of the neutral zone trap. And I also find ironic that he’s complaining about quiet and dull arenas, when it was empty seat galore when the Devils played in the Meadowlands, even during cup final games.

  9. Brian says:

    OK, but come on, I don’t see why Ontario can’t have another team (or two). There are three teams in the NY metro area. Sure the population is much larger than around Toronto, but how many in the NY area are hockey fans? 10%? Is it even that high? What about the % for Ontario? 90%? Hamilton/Kitchener-Toronto-Ottawa isn’t even one metropolitan area. Its much larger.

  10. Keith says:

    I see your point Steve, I happen to think that the first place the Coyotes should go is Winnipeg. It would correct the mistake by bringing back the Jets. A team will succeed in Southern Ontario for obvious reasons, but Winnipeg deserves first dibs at reverting the team back to the Jets. There a few more bad spots that I’m sure will have to move.

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