Big Day in the NHL
It’s the eve of the Stanley Cup Final, and it means so much more to the city and, yeah, sure, the country, as there’s a Canadian team competing for the Stanley Cup. You hear a lot of fuss asking if this Canucks team is ‘Canada’s Team’ to which I reply, who gives a shit? I don’t need any Oilers or Flames fans on this bandwagon. Hell, I’d like to turn back a few Vancouver ‘fans’ if I had the choice.
Back on topic, the NHL finally announced that the Atlanta Thrashers were moving to Winnipeg. This of course marks the return of a NHL franchise to the city known as Winterpeg. While hockey fans are rejoicing, you do gotta feel for Atlanta, first off, that place really doesn’t seem to be a sports town, you don’t hear much about the Falcons, or the Hawks, so shame on Gary Bettman’s NHL for going there to begin with. Who you gotta feel for are all the folks who work for the franchise, and relied on the team being there to earn a living and provide for their families.
It might be hard to believe, but the the easiest part was probably getting the team to Winnipeg, why? Well, the city of Winnipeg has the smallest population out of all NHL cities, so you can say the market is much smaller, but you know there’s probably double the fans compared to places like Atlanta and Florida. The biggest issue has to be the city itself, how can you attract marquee players, and more importantly their wives and girlfriends to a place that’s most famous for it’s terrible weather? Which is followed closely by its drunks sleeping in the streets per capita. Their biggest test comes right off the hop, with Andrew Ladd, who is a free agent, will he decide to stay in knee high snow, with the allure of Portage and Main? I use allure loosely.