Good Luck Salt Lake City

Whats the difference, if someone is commuting 1.5 hours from St. Catherine’s, Guleph, Hamilton etc. To Toronto for a game. It’s the same time investment going to Glendale.

Balsille didn’t play nice? Ya the BOG made a big stink when he went public, but Ryan Smith has been tweeting about it for the last several months and Betteman and the NHL has no problem with that?

It wasn’t Balsille, it was the fact he wanted to go to Ontario and the NHL had to protect the crybaby leafs and Sabres.

Well the Suns sell out. EVERY GAME in the last season too mind you. The Cardinals? Well they don’t sell out with quite the fair-weather fans.

To your point I do think part of the situation in Arizona is fair-weather fans, which is hardly unique to Arizona, but much of it is the ownership and management because the Suns, and in the past also the Diamondbacks and the Cardinals, indicate success can be had in that market.

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Well then … we disagree

8/9 regular-season home games a year (most on Sunday) for what is America’s “real” game, with tailgating pre and often post-game is hardly comparable.

TO fans be stupid

Well … you do.

There’s no difference. People are not going to do it in either place. Again even less will do it in Phoenix since hockey is the fourth most popular of the major leagues there. But that doesn’t mean it couldn’t work if located in a proper facility near where the fanbase is. The Coyotes even stated a number their sponsors didn’t follow them to Glendale. All that is a recipe for disaster.

The difference is Smith played nice and went through the process with the NHL. He only went to the local public when he had already been given the green light by the league in regards to moving the team. Not before.
Balsille tried to force a move which rightfully angered the other owners. There’s the difference.

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In general terms, it is known as “being able to play well with others” … why would any private club want to let someone join who can’t do so?


Of course in a market like Quebec City or Hamilton or Saskatoon, it would be irrelevant where the arena goes, the team will not have attendance issues, at all. Stating the obvious. The burbs and what type of burbs is irrelevant for the NHL in these Canadian markets.

Their issue would be corporate sales, advertising, promotions, etc.

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But wouldn’t that be a problem in a U.S. city if the corporate people knew the arena was not located in the correct location for the limited fanbase?

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QC’s predominant “industry” is government, which can’t spend money on tickets/suites/sponsorships/advertising/etc., or at least shouldn’t … the metropolitan area of SLC is twice the size of QC and it has a far larger “corporate” base … so less of it needs to spend money on the NHL team … add in joint Jazz-??? sales/sponsorships and they should be OK.

Since Utah Mormons is probably out of the question, I would call them the Utah Red Rocks

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Balsille only went rouge after AFTER he tried doing it the “right way”.

If you listen to him, he said he met with Betteman and was clear he wanted a team for Hamilton. Betteman tried to get him to take on a problem franchise instead ( Pittsburg).

Balsille said it became clear to him the NHL woul not have an honest conversation about Hamilton because it was a non-starter for Toronto and Buffalo.

So he got creative when he saw their was no fair and honest option available to him.

The NHL couldn’t come out and admit they’re protecting a monopoly for Toronto, so they villianized Balsille instead, and most people fell for it.

If you need further proof, Hamilton also “played by the NHL’s rules” in the 1990 expansion attempt. They met all the rules: arena, season ticket commitment, stable owner and market. Check, check, check and check. The two cities that were granted franchises, Ottawa and Tampa, did not meet all of the criteria, yet they got teams.

The NHL is protecting the mlse monopoly, it seems the only way another team comes to Ontario is by some rouge method.

For this Basille should be considered a Canadian hero for taking on MLSE and the NHL. But to many Betteman bootlickers can’t understand it.


I’m confused. Are you trying to imply there are people who aren’t NHL team owners who actually like Bettman?

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Haha fair point. No, more that some people seem to accept Betteman’s / NHL’s story without analyzing it more critically.

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  • Don’t think it is any secret that the NHL offers franchieses "territorial rights

  • Ottawa and TBL got their franchises because they were willing to meet the NHL’s expansion fee asking price, the other bidders weren’t

  • Owning an NHL franchise is not a “right” … the NHL is private club and can set whatever rules it chooses … there is no process for getting a team other than whatever process the NHL decides to apply.


There was no way the NHL was going to put a team in The Goldenhorseshoe area

Ron Joyce asked for deferral of a couple months for portion of the fee. Hardly uncommon, and vastly different then not having the fee at all.

The NHL now operates this way, but in 1990 they stated the criteria more explicitly. Matter of fact, these same criteria were discussed recently in relation to Phoenix / SLC.

Territorial rights and 2/3 vs. Unanimous vote is debated within the NHL and amoung it’s teams, specifically MLSE. I wish I could find it, but there was an internal letter leaked and published in The Spectator some years ago that demonstrates the NHL and MLSE disagreed on whether or not expansion / relocation required a simple majority, 2/3rds or Unanimous support. MLSE was of the opinion Unanimous support was needed, giving them a defacto veto. The NHL office didn’t agree with them.

Even though Hamilton made an official expansion application in 1990, the application was returned along with the fee. Reason being doing so never put the league in the position of having to officially consider and vote on the application. If they did and it was rejected, legal recourse would have been available to the applicants to claim collusion to protect a monopoly.

To date, despite several attempts to bring a team to Hamilton, there has never been an official NHL BOG hearing on a Hamilton franchise for this exact reason.

Once people start to understand all of this, it gets very easy to start to despise the Maple Leafs and MLSE as a whole.

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I shall suggest the Utau Blizzard or Salt Lake City Outlaws.

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There’s no “getting creative”. It’s their private, exclusive club. You play by their rules until you get in. Period. He didn’t and was predictably had the proverbial door shut in his face.

As already stated, Hamilton had the inside track (reportedly) on a franchise when the league was taking expansion proposals from cities. Ron Joyce balked at paying the full amount (believe it was $50 million). Two groups agreed to pay in full: Ottawa and Tampa Bay. Guess who got the franchises? This despite the fact that both bids were inferior to others.

And are they protecting MLSE? Absolutely they are. All good franchisors should do just that. If you want that to change, play nice and get your check book open for Toronto and Buffalo and MAYBE something gets done. You try and force your way in, you’re dead in the water


I hated the Leafs long before Hamilton tried to get an NHL team … have always hated the Craptors and Toronto FC as well … I cheer against the Argos, but they don’t seem important to MLSE so I don’t “hate” them.


Dead in the water for sure, spot on! Which is why Leiwke is playing his cards right on this with his involvement with FOC in Hamilton and the major upgrades, he’s mentioned this isn’t at all about the NHL, not at all, it’s about bringing most likely AHL hockey back with the ability to compete with other arenas in Ontario, even London’s Budweiser Gardens at this point, despite lower capacity, is far fancier than Hamilton’s FOC (London nailed it with this arena, nailed with 9000 still able to get major groups and not “tell the world” we want the NHL stupidly. I think Budweiser Gardens has about the same elite suites as Tim Horton’s Field, I kid you not!) Albeit I don’t know the revenue these elite suites in London for hockey etc. compare with FOC and the Toronto Rock etc. at this point, but there is a reason why Oak View is spending mega in Hamilton) , and yes Leiweke (Oak View Group) has both Budweiser Gardens in London and FOC in Hamilton as their venues, see below. Southern Ontario is an interesting market for the most part I believe for concerts rather than hockey/other events:

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