From what I've heard, realignment won't be a possibility for the coming year, because of how late this has gone on. That means that, for one year only, Winnipeg would be playing in the Southeast Division. The year after that, realignment would occur, with one of Detroit, Columbus or Nashville moving to the Eastern Conference. Assuming, of course, that Phoenix doesn't wind up moving somewhere else next year and throwing another monkey wrench into things!
If the Thrashers did move to Winnipeg, would they be able to call themselves the Jets (in the same way that an expansion team called themselves the Cleveland Browns, and a potential future NBA team in Seattle can call themselves the SuperSonics)? Or do the Phoenix Coyotes own the rights to the name? (And if they did, could they, or would they, give the relocated Thrashers permission to use the name?)
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In regards to the new name, there's already a rumour that if a non-Coyotes team moves to Winnipeg, the new team's name will actually be the Manitoba Moose.
It just makes too much sense for the NHL to not move one of these dead-weight southern US teams to Winnipeg (or Quebec City, or Hamilton, or Toronto, etc.) since the market is just infinitely more passionate about hockey. Atlanta's a bigger TV market, sure, but that doesn't really matter if nobody is watching.
"It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone." --- Bart Giamatti, on baseball
I am waiting to see the realignment derby, to see who gets to be moved to the East.
If this is true, Detroit or Columbus probably,
While I would love to see Detroit in the East, no way is it happening. There's no way they're leaving Chicago as the only Original 6 team in the West, especially given their rivalry with Detroit. And Detroit draws too well in the Western Conference cities where they don't fill up arenas (Columbus, Phoenix, Nashville, etc.) to move them.
Oh, and Bettman hates the Wings, so a move to the East would be too much good news for us fans.
Originally posted by CajunManSounds like Gary wants to think about this one, I mean why leave a good TV market like Atlanta?
I'm sure I'll draw the ire of the true Northerners who want every struggling team poached to Quebec City and Hamilton and Halifax and Kelowna for saying this, but probably because if Atlanta ever ended up with even moderate success like some of the other southern teams (Anaheim/San Jose/Dallas/Carolina) it would mean more for the league's negotiating worth than a capped market like Winnipeg even if they're doing wall-to-wall sellouts, which they of course will.
All that said, this is a cool thing. Those fans had their hearts broken and after years of longs odds and false hope, they're actually getting a team back. That's gotta be a pretty emotional deal there.
Originally posted by RJ ShaftOh, and Bettman hates the Wings, so a move to the East would be too much good news for us fans.
Michigan, what's that, Mountain time zone? Hawaiian?
I think they'll send Columbus over. I guess Nashville could join the southeast to restore its redneck hockey gap but Tennessee is central time isn't it?
Detroit is not a candidate to go back east because. uhhhh. I don't want to play them until the Finals. I mean you can't give up Wings/Hawks and Wings/Avs and Wings/Ducks and Wings...Preds.
I remember when the NHL announced the league was expanding to Atlanta. I thought, "Why? They already lost one franchise to Calgary." Atlanta Spirit has no interest in owning the team. One guy in the group said in an interview that the group hasn't even thought about owning the Thrashers after this season! True North has been told to say nothing about any negotiations or deals in both the Phoenix and Atlanta cases, and the NHL won't say anything until the official announcement
That being said, the Mayor of Winnipeg is expecting the announcement on Tuesday. So a big welcome back to Winnipeg. Be you the Jets or Moose, I'm happier than hell to see you back in the NHL!
"Speed has never killed anyone - suddenly becoming stationary, that's what gets you." - Jeremy Clarkson, Top Gear
Originally posted by odessasteps Atlanta may be a big TV market, but does that matter if no one watches? And have the Thrashers even been on NBC? They show the same 6 teams every week.
Like Miami. They average 3,000 viewers per game. So, would losing the market really be that big a deal, other than the players not getting to go to south beach on road trips?
Right, but that's why I said "if they ever ended up with even moderate success" as a franchise. Which maybe you can rule out ever happening in Atlanta based on their two tries. But an average Atlanta has more value than a packed Winnipeg.
Still, these situations are almost always more about ownership commitment than they are about the market. The difference between Atlanta and Phoenix is just that no one in Atlanta (either city or owner) was willing to be on the hook anymore. Anaheim/San Jose/Dallas/Carolina are all successful markets and not coincidentally they've all had competitive teams that won Cups (and a President's Trophy). Atlanta and Florida have had terrible ownership and terrible management -- what, one combined playoff appearance in the last 10 years? And Don Waddell killed that team in a hurry. So is there a reason for anyone to go to their games? Same with Phoenix, they stunk until last year and for the last two seasons have been presumed to be a dead team walking. The only "good" expansion/southern team to struggle has been Nashville, right?
Larry Murphy, of course, will always be the answer to one of my favorite hockey trivia questions... Who was the third man on the rush with Gretzky and Mario when Mario scored the winner in the '87 Canada Cup?