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 Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL or did they move to the wrong city?

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KillerCarlson



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PostSubject: Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL or did they move to the wrong city?   Sat May 28, 2011 10:15 pm

Did the NHL move to the wrong Canadian city?

Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL, or did the NHL move to the wrong Canadian city?

Written by Derek Felska | 28 May 2011

1920's movie star Mary Pickford once said, "If you have made mistakes, even serious ones, there is always another chance for you. What we call failure is not the falling down but the staying down." Sage advice from one of the most significant stars in early film. Second chances are a part of life. More often than not, when you make a mistake you get a chance to prove yourself again and make amends. For those of us who are unafraid to admit they've made mistakes after the initial pain of making such a mistake wears off the first thing one thinks of is when they will have the opportunity to rectify the situation. I am fairly certain that is what the City of Winnipeg is feeling right now after it has been announced that the NHL's Atlanta Thrashers have been sold to True North Holdings, an ownership group based out of the sprawling city on the Manitoba plains. I can relate as I can say much of those feelings of wanting to prove one's self to the doubters when the NHL returned to Minnesota in 2000. In 1997 the NHL announced the approval of a new expansion franchise and we knew we'd have our second chance to prove the Twin Cities is a great market for the league.

Yet the final redemption of being granted a new franchise in 1997 was not without attempts to try to expedite that process. What is often forgotten was Minnesota's attempts to attract teams that were going through relocation; which was a bit of a fad throughout the mid-1990's as it started with the painful move of the Minnesota North Stars to Dallas. Yet soon after the North Stars left in 1993, many hockey fans their wealthy hockey-mad compatriots tried to be apart of the bidding war for other NHL franchises who wanted to seek out new pastures. The state tried to lure the Quebec Nordiques (who left for Colorado), the Hartford Whalers (who left for North Carolina), the Edmonton Oilers (who didn't go anywhere), and ironically enough the Winnipeg Jets (who left for Phoenix) as well only to fail in each attempt. In a strange twist, it was soon after the failed attempt to land the Winnipeg Jets (no pun intended) that Minnesota would lose its consolation prize; of an International Hockey League franchise the Minnesota Moose which would go to Winnipeg where they became the Manitoba Moose. The old slogan for the departed IHL squad was "the Moose was loose" could not be more accurate. The NHL toyed with Minnesota during the 7-year hiatus between the North Stars relocation and the arrival of the Wild with a few exhibition games played at the Target Center in Minneapolis. Not that this needs anymore irony but recent discussion about shutting down the Target Center and having the Timberwolves take up residence in St. Paul's Xcel Energy Center makes this whole story seem to come full circle. Yet the bigger question about this most recent franchise relocation that I feel is not being asked nearly enough, is this a real good idea for the NHL? (click on the link for the rest of the article)

I started to think about this issue more and decided to formalize it. Perhaps its worthy of discussion and debate, enjoy!
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Kevin W
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PostSubject: Re: Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL or did they move to the wrong city?   Sat May 28, 2011 10:35 pm

I agree 100% with that thought. If moving to Canada was the only thought considered, Quebec City should've received the nod over Winnipeg.

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00Xtremeninja
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PostSubject: Re: Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL or did they move to the wrong city?   Sun May 29, 2011 3:01 am

I have heard back and forth things about the arena to be used in Winnipeg (small or not up todate i think). Why would the NHL want to revert back to a smaller rink in a chance that demand might not last after the first two years, especially if the team sucks.

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PostSubject: Re: Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL or did they move to the wrong city?   Sun May 29, 2011 5:04 pm

Winnipeg already has an arena ready to go, not so for Quebec. Though you know Quebec is next in line since they have a plan to have one built in the next couple years.

Add in the fact that the new owner would instantly be the wealthiest in the league... he is worth $19 billion... I don't think you have to worry about the franchise failing.

Besides, the biggest problem with both Winnipeg and Quebec the last time around was the weak Canadian dollar at the time. That is no longer an issue.
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PostSubject: Re: Does a move to Winnipeg mean success for the NHL or did they move to the wrong city?   Tue May 31, 2011 12:23 pm

And it's official. Thrashers will begin playing in Winnipeg immediately next season. Continue to be in the Southeast division until re-alignment in the 2012-13 season.

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