Is Hamilton a Minor League City?

As Toronto is being talked about getting a second NHL team Hamilton is being completely ignored this time. A NHL Board member whos with the New York Rangers mentioned recently that Hamilton will never get a team for the two following reasons.(1) Hamilton is a minor legue city and cant support anything more.(2) That it would be imposiable to sell a game in New York against a team with a name “The Hamilton Steelers!” . As it is very clear who ever said these things is very ignorant and is speaking for a city he knows nothing about! Then again maybe this guy is just mad that a steel city like Pitttsburgh beat him lately! :wink:

I agree what money in hamilton is going to support these teams. Major league sports is about corporate dollars and unforunately hamilton has very little big corporation. We have very little eye appeal to draw fans in from othe cities as well. Not to mention our stadiums are all very out dated. Sadly hamilton fans are way to fickle and may fork over the cash for one losing season and quickly jump ship. We just dont have the big pay cheque earns to shell out the 1000’s of dollars on luxury boxes and high end season tickets on a consistant basis. TV and commercial and sponsorship dollars will always go to the Maple leafs i have a hard time believing a nhl team could ever survive more then a few seasons or any big time sports team. The big bread earners will always prefer tickets in Toronto. Picture this your a big time exec and some offers you hamilton instert name tickets how thrilling would that be for someone out of town or from the states.

How can we even be a minor league city when we don’t support our minor league teams.

If the NHL came to Hamilton, it would make money because all of the people who can’t get Leafs tickets would get the Hamilton’s team tickets.

There aren’t going to be “true” fans at the game because just like Leaf games it will be mostly corporate paying the big bucks.

The Cats only play 10 games a year and we are lucky to get 20,000 people. Can you imagine getting 18.000 people 41 times per year plus exhibition.

I am one who believes that Hamilton shouldn’t get an NHL team. We have 3 really close by in Toronto, Buffalo and Detroit. Our arena is terrible, there is no parking close to the arena to accomodate 6,000 cars per game.

If people want a hockey team so bad, why don’t they support the Bulldogs or Red Wings or the Real McCoys.

If you think Bulldog tickets are expensive at 25 bucks a pop, then wait till the NHL comes here.

I don't support the bulldogs, I am not going to lie about it....because I am not a Montreal Canadiens fan, I will go see them play the Marlies, I am a Leafs fan, and although the Bulldogs has produced some of the NHL's brightest stars over the past few years I just don't feel attached to the team given my dislike of the Canadiens organization (the burden of a Leafs fan..haha)

When the Bulldogs were the part of the Oilers I backed them so much more because I do like the Oilers...I dunno, its hard to back a minor league team whose big brother team I loathe..

The problem with Minor League teams is that they always have a Professional team sitting ahead of them, and to some (like me) that actually matters.....

There are only a handful of teams that I detest (Habs, Sens, Flyers, and the Devils somewhat) and out of 29 minor league teams, the NHL threw one of the 4 that I don't like.

Would I support an NHL team...for sure...

I try constantly to get Leafs tickets and fail everytime even to see a team like Florida..I guarentee that I do not fall into the minority, people wanting to see NHL hockey...possibly liking the Leafs or well any team and they cannot see them locally because finding a ticket to a Leafs game is as rare as a bigfoot sighting. I can see NHL talent playing in Hamilton..but we are just a bunch of blue collar yokels to the big stuffed shirts of the NHL..So be it, I don't care, I don't have my head in the clouds I understand the work and money required to bring a team to Hamilton with the poor state of Copps, and what have you. But I really think some have to look at the big picture..we aren't just some unsupportive city we like who we like..

If ever Balsillie does get a team and bring it to Hamilton, one of the conditions of this I'm sure will be that the name of the team can't be Hamilton xxx's, it would have to be something like Ontario xxx's whatever, anything but Hamilton because it seems to me, wrongly, that the name 'Hamilton' conjures up a low image or whatever, maybe because of the working class nature of this town overall. But then, you have one of the most prestigious and best golf courses in the nation with the Hamilton Golf and Country Club. Hmmmm, maybe that NHL person really doesn't know their assssss from a hole in the ground to be quite honest.

Well, that explains EVERYTHING... :roll: :lol:

Hmmm, there's a name for that, I think it's called being "biased" if I'm not mistaken. :wink:

The truth is, Earl, that this loose-lipped goof
and the average citizen in the United States

if they've heard of Hamilton at all, think of us
as an industrial steel town and nothing more.

So what.

Do you think hockey fans in other NHL cities stay home
when Sidney Crosby and the Penguins come to town?

If Gary Bettman can be shoved aside by the NHL governors,

Hamilton's present image won't be what deters them
from taking Jim Balsillie's money to bail out a franchise.

It will be the power of Toronto's big-time resistance.


If anything comes of this, it wouldn't hurt if the city
put together video of other aspects of our fine city

to begin the process of building a strong image.

That video should definitey include that fantastic
TV coverage of the Bike Racing Championships.

The rest of Canada with their stereotypes
could definitely benefit from that effort, too.

Would Hamilton's draw in New York be an different than say Edmonton, Ottawa, or Calgary?

Those cities aren't much larger than Hamilton, and just because Ottawa is Canada's capital city doesn't mean that U.S. hockey fans know that.

[url=] ... &year=2007[/url]

According to this site, the ten teams that attracted the worst average road attendance were all American:

Anaheim, St. Louis, Dallas, Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Florida, Los Angelas, San Jose, Columbus, Nashville.

Edmonton, Calgary and Ottawa ranked 11, 12, and 14 in average road attendance, ahead of Montreal which ranked 15 in road attendance.

There's no reason to assume Hamilton could not rank just as well.

Especially well said ADAWG, I'm wit' you.

If I am Clark Gable, as Rhett Butler of
"the movie, 'Gone With The Wind

and I represent Hamilton city council,

When the Scarlett O'Hara's of the NHL, Nashville, Phoenix,
and Tampa Bay say,"Where shall I go? What shall I do?"

I would say to them, "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."

We are having enough trouble supporting the teams we have.

The talk about Toronto getting a second team is not because of the thought Hamilton couldn't support a team but more because of two other factors.

  1. A team in Hamilton would really hurt Buffalo.

  2. If there is a team in Hamilton compensation would have to be paid out to both Toronto and Buffalo. If the team is Toronto you won't have to worry about Buffalo (although I think any additional team in Ontario would hurt Buffalo) and renting out the ACC among other things would provide revenue for MLSE.

The ACC is the second busiest arena in North America so scheduling of game will become very difficult, for the second team of course.

But if you are a Leafs fan, why would you not still root for the Leafs?

This is the other point. Leaf fans, even in the Hamilton area, are not all of a sudden going to change their allegiance to Hamilton, well maybe because they would have a better shot at a cup!!!! HAHAHA.

Anyways, I'm a Sabres fan and my buddy is a Red Wings fan. I am not sure if we would change our allegiance to the new team.

Hamilton screams for professional hockey and we have had the Canucks, which tanked and the Bulldogs which to my amazement is still here. I don't care who they are affiliated with. I support them because they are Hamilton. Who care if it's Montreal or Edmonton or Buffalo. It's a Hamilton team that we should support.

I don't go to Bulldog games because they are boring. Hockey is a very boring sport and I am not into it as I was when I was a kid. I used to go see the Kitly B's (now Red Wings and who no one supports!!!) to see a much better product.

Are true hockey/Hamilton hockey fans, actually going to support this team and pay their hard earned money for a team that won't win for at least 10 years? Look at the Tampa Rays. Expansion team with 9 straight years of losing. We can't even put up with the cats anymore, why would "Joe the Plumber" want to spend his hard earned money on a loser? Just so he can say he has tickets.

Hamilton would be all corporate. I hate going to Leaf games cuz all of the true fans sit in the rafters and it's their 1 game a year that they treat themselves too.

I'll be honest, in my last job, I used to get tickets for Buffalo and Toronto all the time. I went to about 5 games a year. My suppliers knew I like the Sabres and my dad liked the Bruins so they made sure they filled my pockets with those tickets as they knew they wouldn't go to waste. I've also had tickets (200 dollar a seat) to see Washington play. Like I said, I don't like hockey and don't like Washington or Toronto but I went. (Ovechkin is amazing!) The point I want to make is that there is a Leaf fan or Capitals fan out there that would have gone and cheered their heart out.

Instead, I go half interested in the game just cuz the tickets were free and near ice level.

I hate this. I know the corporations pay the bills but it's the true fan that needs access. There are some Leaf fans in their 50s and 60s who have probably never seen their Leafs play cuz they couldn't get tickets.
To me, that's a shame.

I don't want an NHL team in Hamilton. It would work with corporate money and fans with money in their pocket wouldn't be able to afford it year after year.

If you want to see a great building and good hockey, drive to Buffalo. Last year I made it home in 1 hr and 4 minutes.

Before we get an NHL team, we need to support our 2 professional teams (Ticats & Bulldogs). This doesn't mean wait until they are winning. It means support them through thick and thin. These tickets are cheap compared to what you would pay at an NHL game.

Let's enjoy and support what we have.

It makes more sense for Balsillie to use the land RIM has apparently already purchased on the 401 near Cambridge to put in an arena and bring his NHL team to Southern Ontario. The location is outside the Toronto and Buffalo border zone that would result in big payouts to these teams and allow them to easily throw monkey wrenches into Balsillie's plans. Easy access for London, Kitchener, Waterloo, Hamilton, entire Metro Toronto area fans. Easy access to the Toronto airport.... and in an area of white-collar cities that are experiencing impressive growth. Yes, Hamilton could be a short-term solution for a team in this area but I don't see Copps as a legitimate NHL arena or Hamilton as a great location to build a team....

Just curious... Anyone know whether the Islanders and the Devils had to pay the Rangers when they joined the league?... I can't remember. What is the radius within which compensation has to be paid? How much is the compensation payment?

Doesn't matter if the team is in K-W area, the ;league can still vote against it.

Also, it doens't matter if the team is close to another city because it seems the prevailing legal wisdom is that the NHL constitution does not override law. You'd think that would be a no brainer.

Also, it's been mentioned by Balsillie's lawyer that Balsillie wants the team in Hamilton, where his wife is from and one major reason of his is to revitalize Hamilton's downtown.

Bottom line: Money talks. In the end it's only money that gets results in situations like these, and if a guy like Balsillie wants an NHL team in Hmailton, I think that sooner or later he'll get it. He's too godd of a partner to turn away.

The timing has never been better with all the impending economic crises coupled with financial disasters like Nashville, who better to fix it?

[i]"As for Buffalo, their Canadian ticket sales have been greatly overestimated. The real figure is 11 per cent after being as high as 25 per cent a few decades back.

And no small portion of those Canadian tickets are sold for Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal games. Hamilton would join that trio. Can any sane person believe the 50 kilometres between Copps and, say, Woodbine Racetrack, would make a substantial difference to the Buffalo franchise? Puh-leeze.

But a team in Hamilton would still hit the Sabres, perhaps knocking their Canadian sales down to 5 or 6 per cent. Balsillie is known to have a relationship with the Sabres' ownership and management, so a financial arrangement could easily be worked out."[/i]

From today's Spec Hamilton NHL no longer a long shot

Another terrific article that says Hamilton makes more sense than Toronto is in today's National Post

[i]"Balsillie is not interested in playing by MLSE's rules, or in MLSE's building. He would be a second- or third-class citizen there; it would be a lousy business model to boot. It sounds more like an idea that the Leafs are circulating in case the NHL does decide to ram a team into Hogtown, since they would prefer to be landlords, rather than competitors, in that eventuality.

But if Balsillie gets his team - and he is circling Nashville's bleeding owners with a wary eye - he wants to put it in Hamilton, where he could easily parachute in, with renovations to Copps Coliseum pending.

(The idea that you could not market a team because it's from a smaller town like Hamilton is ridiculous, by the way. Hamilton's metropolitan population is roughly the same as Nashville and Carolina and a little smaller than Columbus.)

No, for Balsillie, the point is not just to own a team; it is not just to move a team. It is to take a franchise withering in the U.S. and make it bloom in Canada. Balsillie wants to be the patriotic white knight. He wants to do what he believes is best for the game.[/i]"

Second Toronto NHL franchise seems more than unlikely

Dont' be mislead by the title.

No team has veto power.

It is up to the entire board of governors to vote on such things.

there is no set formula for compensation. Each situation results in a negotiated agreement between the board of governors and potentila new onwer/team.

from today's Gloe and Mail

 [url=http][b]Precedent suggests two teams not too many[/b]


"[i]Bill Daly, deputy commissioner of the NHL, declined to comment on the issue. He did emphasize that no franchise has the right to veto a move into its territory. Another source said the NHL constitution stipulates all existing franchises have the right to veto a move by another club to within 80 kilometres of its arena.

The veto issue is a sensitive subject in sports leagues because of the potential for an antitrust court case.''[/i]

Well since Milton doesn't quote the source of that statistic, I have no idea where he would get the idea that it is that low.

You would have to figure that if the Bill get 15, 000 Canadian out to Ralph Wilson at least the same percentage if not higher would be seen for hockey (18% of capacity would be Canadian) With the Canadian dollar (not today) as high as it has been, I can only seen that more Canadians would be heading to Buffalo for a hockey game. And when Milton refers to 'decades back' what does he mean as the Sabres have only been around since the 70's is where I got the 15,000 for Bills games.

Nor does ESPN cite a source for its figure of 15,000 fans, so why is that figure more credible that Milton's?