Hartford Pens? Ouch....

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Hartford Pens? Ouch....

Postby Nihar on Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:42 pm

http://tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=161588&hubname=

Sorry if already posted, but I don't see it anywhere....
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Postby Jim on Fri Apr 07, 2006 1:03 pm

Is it possible for them to be called the Whalers again? Or does that name belong to the Huricanes?
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Postby Ashamed87 on Fri Apr 07, 2006 3:12 pm

Jim wrote:Is it possible for them to be called the Whalers again? Or does that name belong to the Huricanes?


The Whaler name and logo belong to the city of Hartford. this is why there is no throwback Whaler jersey's, so I guess it is possible for the city to go with the Whaler name and logo again....i know this b/c Ive tried everything to get a Whalers jersey and thats what I was told in a sports store in a Hartford mall....guess Ebay is my only hope.....or wait til they have a team again!
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Postby Guido on Fri Apr 07, 2006 3:58 pm

Hartford is losing population just as bad as Pittsburgh and their economy is depressed too. 'New England's Rising Star' is their slogan....it's a sham. I did a report on the area for my geography class...can't see a team going there and thriving, just wouldn't happen.
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Postby KCHockey on Fri Apr 07, 2006 4:59 pm

Well, Hartford has a leg up on us in KC. They have a local owner interested in purchasing a team.

All we have is an arena that will be done in 2007. Right now, it has no major tennant (except, maybe an arena football team) and there doesn't appear to be a local ownership group interested in the NHL, AHL or NBA.

Whether Hartford is depressed or not doesn't matter. If Gottesdiener buys the team and thinks he can make a better go of it in his home town, he will move the team.
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Postby ivand87 on Fri Apr 07, 2006 5:04 pm

F Hartford. F Kansas City. Who's with me?
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Postby 68forever on Fri Apr 07, 2006 5:09 pm

Hartford people are still stuck on their Whalers that I'm not sure they would take to having a new team. I've asked a few of my friends here who actually know a few Hurricane players and they all say they still follow the Hurricanes and have some really mixed feelings about wether they want another team to replace their precious Whalers. They do have the Wolfpack which is the AHL team for the Rangers and they do ok but they just don't draw big crowds to their games. A few thousand at best each game. For as long as it has been most people around here are still pretty upset at losing the Whalers and still feel like they have been robbed, if they want anyone back it seems they would like to have the Hurricanes back as the Whalers rather than have a new team or another team renamed the Whalers. But who knows this is hopefully a moot point anyways and our Pens will still be our Pens for years to come.
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Postby Ben Klingston on Fri Apr 07, 2006 6:38 pm

Hartford takes the Pens... and renames them the Whalers for their lost franchise.

Then Pittsburgh finally builds a new arena five years later and draws an NHL team, and renames them the Pens for their lost franchise.

And the circle of life continues.

Oh, and as for how Harfordonians (?) would feel about adopting another city's team and restarting their Whaler franchise back up... I can see the situation with the Cleveland Browns being a similar deal. A city devoted to a certain franchise... but if it means starting over again... they take it in a heartbeat to get a franchise back.
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Postby Draftnik on Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:02 pm

KCHockey wrote:Well, Hartford has a leg up on us in KC. They have a local owner interested in purchasing a team.

All we have is an arena that will be done in 2007. Right now, it has no major tennant (except, maybe an arena football team) and there doesn't appear to be a local ownership group interested in the NHL, AHL or NBA.

Whether Hartford is depressed or not doesn't matter. If Gottesdiener buys the team and thinks he can make a better go of it in his home town, he will move the team.


The Connecticut legislature will not pay $250M of the $275M arena he wants. The NHL BOG would not approve a move back to Hartford. Other than that, his newspaper spiel is very realistic. :roll:

Nobody wants to own an NBA or NHL team in KC because AEG will get most of the arena revenue to recoup their $50M investment. KC will never offer a sweetheart deal.
Last edited by Draftnik on Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby ExPatriatePen on Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:06 pm

If you haven't lived in NE you can't understand the intensity of the support for Hockey.

Hartford can support an NHL franchise and I'll be happy to explain why if someone wants to debate the fact with me.
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Postby Draftnik on Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:23 pm

ExPatriatePen wrote:If you haven't lived in NE you can't understand the intensity of the support for Hockey.

Hartford can support an NHL franchise and I'll be happy to explain why if someone wants to debate the fact with me.


The NHL never wanted to be in Hartford. The NHL never wanted to be in Quebec City. The NHL never wanted to be in Winnipeg. The only reasons Edmonton still has a team is because Gretzky created a hardcore group of fans willing to buy tix and businesses willing to buy suites and 37 local businessmen pitched in to cobble together community ownership.

What do they have in common? They were all inherited from the WHA merger. The NHL absorbed the 4 WHA teams to curtail salary escalation, not get into B markets.

The NHL made no attempt to stop Karmanos from moving to Carolina. At the time it was thought to be a predetermined outcome. Hartford couldn't support an NHL team. They were not selling out the Mall.

The TV market/territory overlaps with 3 or 4 other franchises.

If the NHL were to move the Pens it would be someplace that improved their national TV footprint. The 4th largest TV market for example.

Hartford doesn't have a new building and won't fund one with public $$$ after the uCon stadium fiasco.

How many more reasons could I list? Just because some guy says something in a newspaper it doesn't mean it will happen. Hartford is a lost cause.
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Postby ExPatriatePen on Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:33 pm

Drafnik, I'm not going to get into a whizzing contest with you. But before the inergration/expansion of the AHL do you realize that he AHL had 7 teams within a two hour drive of Hartford? Do you have any idea that the Hartford market inlcudes Springfield Mass (20 minutes) and all of Western Mass?


Do you realize that it's less than 45 minutes from Providence?

That the Hartford area is third in Hockey rink density in the US behind Boston and Providence? (Ahead of the Twin Cities?)

Let it go... Hartford isn't Nashville, and Nashville has a succesful franchise.
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Postby Draftnik on Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:43 pm

ExPatriatePen wrote:Let it go... Hartford isn't Nashville, and Nashville has a succesful franchise.


People are moving to Nashville. People are moving away from Hartford. The NHL (like most businesses) takes a long term view when moving into markets. They want to be where the people will be in 10-20 years. That is why they are taking their lumps with the Sun Belt markets.

The NHL never would have had a team in Hartford without the WHA. That is a fact, not my opinion. The NHL left Hartford because it couldn't profitably support an NHL franchise. That is a fact, not my opinion. There was no hue and cry to bring NHL hockey back to Hartford when the Whale left. That is a fact, not my opinion. Connecticut just went through a major public backlash over the cost of funding uCon's FB stadium. That is a fact, not my opinion. There is no plan to build $275M arena with public $$$ in Connecticut. That is a fact, not my opinion.

Once the Pens arena deal is done it will be great not to have to deal with these nonsensical theories about the Pens moving to sh*tholes like KC and Hartford. Then we'll be stuck with the idiotic ramblings about the NBA coming to Pittsburgh. That lunacy comes up every few years when some idiot talks about it and end up in the papers.
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Postby ExPatriatePen on Sat Apr 08, 2006 6:26 am

You make some excellent points and I never said you were spouting opinion over fact. I disagree with the degree of your statements, (I think you're prone to overstatement occasionally) but not the substance.

I think what disturbs me most about your position is that you're so confident that no one else can possibly make the Pens a better offer than Plan "b".

That's a dangerous way to think.

I'm old enough to remember the Cardinals leaving St. Louis for Arizona, (and in fact lived in the St. Louis area at the time), I remember the day it was reported that the Colts left Baltimore. Those cities never thought Phoenix or Indy were attractive markets.

The Rams leaving LA, the Browns leaving Cleveland, in hockey the North Stars leaving Minnesota for Dallas was a huge shock and is probably the most analogous to our situation.

All I'm saying is that Pittsburgh has plenty to offer the Pens (Fan base, large market for RSN, etc...) but I don't think we should get cocky and discount the Pens other options by any means.
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Postby KCHockey on Sat Apr 08, 2006 8:05 am

Nobody wants to own an NBA or NHL team in KC because AEG will get most of the arena revenue to recoup their $50M investment. KC will never offer a sweetheart deal.


Well, AEG must come up with a sweetheart deal.

The naming rights contract for the Sprint Center is contingent on an NHL or NBA team.

With NHL or NBA = $2,500,000 for a 25 year deal
Without NHL or NBA = $20,000/year

AEG picks up the difference with no NHL or NBA.

Regardless, it looks like NBA because it doesn't seem any NHL teams will move.
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Postby Draftnik on Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:58 am

ExPatriatePen wrote:You make some excellent points and I never said you were spouting opinion over fact. I disagree with the degree of your statements, (I think you're prone to overstatement occasionally) but not the substance.

I think what disturbs me most about your position is that you're so confident that no one else can possibly make the Pens a better offer than Plan "b".

That's a dangerous way to think.

I'm old enough to remember the Cardinals leaving St. Louis for Arizona, (and in fact lived in the St. Louis area at the time), I remember the day it was reported that the Colts left Baltimore. Those cities never thought Phoenix or Indy were attractive markets.

The Rams leaving LA, the Browns leaving Cleveland, in hockey the North Stars leaving Minnesota for Dallas was a huge shock and is probably the most analogous to our situation.

All I'm saying is that Pittsburgh has plenty to offer the Pens (Fan base, large market for RSN, etc...) but I don't think we should get cocky and discount the Pens other options by any means.


ExPat, I remember all the moves you mention. I was a student at the Univ of MD when the Colts moving vans took off under the cover of darkness. I remember the TV footage of the Mayflower moving vans leaving their Owings Mills complex on a snowy winter morning.

I'm not cocky about this, but all of the garbage markets mentioned like KC & Hartford make no financial sense from many angles and absolutely no sense from an overall NHL perspective. If Les Alexander were in the papers saying he wanted to buy the Pens I would more pessimistic about the Pens chances of remaining in Pittsburgh than anybody else on this board.

Houston would be a very credible threat if Les Alexander (Rockets owner) were interested. If he integrated an NHL franchise with his NBA franchise and control of Toyota Center revenues he would have the perfect integration scenario. Throw in the possibility of starting his own RSN and it makes even more sense. The NHL would love to be in Houston (#4 or #5 TV market.) On the other hand if some chump other than Alexander came along and wanted to move the Pens to Houston it wouldn't make much sense because he would take a beating on his revenue streams much like Leonsis is killed by Abe Pollin at Verizon Center.

The business of owning NBA and NHL teams is about controlling ALL revenue streams from the building. The sports teams are the anchor to make profits off of 100+ non-sporting events. Throw in integration with RSNs and there is potential to make even more $$$. All of the half *** cities out there like KC, Hartford, etc make no sense in the 21st century business model for an NHL franchise.
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Postby Vanbiesbrouck on Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:03 am

Doesn't it make sense that the league would want the team moved given either side of this argument?

People are moving out of Pittsburgh, and of the opposition to the arena, the majority is probably comprised of those that are actually the ones rooted here.
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Postby Draftnik on Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:54 am

KCHockey wrote:
Nobody wants to own an NBA or NHL team in KC because AEG will get most of the arena revenue to recoup their $50M investment. KC will never offer a sweetheart deal.


Well, AEG must come up with a sweetheart deal.

The naming rights contract for the Sprint Center is contingent on an NHL or NBA team.

With NHL or NBA = $2,500,000 for a 25 year deal
Without NHL or NBA = $20,000/year

AEG picks up the difference with no NHL or NBA.

Regardless, it looks like NBA because it doesn't seem any NHL teams will move.


AEG invested $50M in the Sprint Center to make a return on their investment, not out of altruistic love for the people of KC. They didn't invest it to break even; their industry has metrics for gross and net operating margins. There is no way in he## they would turn over control of the arena to a tenant as Pittsburgh will to the Pens. Their situation is further complicated because Kemper is not being torn down (correct me if I'm wrong.) That creates even further pressure for them to take all the revenues from Sprint Center because they will not be booking the typical # of events with another viable large arena in the same city.

AEG would be a serious threat if they become a candidate to buy the Pens. I would not be surprised to see them try and sell the LA Kings if they can't con some sucker into moving a team to KC. They could afford to give a prospective LA Kings owner better arena revenue streams than they can in KC because Staples is so booked with 3 pro sports franchises and the ton of events LA attracts. Staples or MSG probably have the highest event ratios of any arenas in the US.

As an aside it seems like KC is a very progressive place to live in terms of acceptance of pro sports. It must be nice to live in a place where citizens support using tax $$$ for pro sports venues. It sounds like Hunt will have a pretty cool movable roof for Arrowhead. I know I rip KC pretty hard in this forum, but I actually think it is much further into the 21st century than Pittsburgh with more upscale shopping, varied types of restaurants, organic grocery stores, etc. Pittsburgh is 10-15 years behind real cities. KC is probably only 5-7 years behind. The downtown seems very dirty and beat, but I've visited some very nice suburban areas.
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Postby KCHockey on Sat Apr 08, 2006 2:56 pm

It sounds like Hunt will have a pretty cool movable roof for Arrowhead.


Actually, Jackson County (where KCMO is located) voted down the rolling roof.

They voted in favor of a 3/8 of a cent sales tax increase to improve Kauffman and Arrowhead. As a result, the teams extended their leases for 25 years.

As I said earlier, AEG will pursue an NHL or NBA tennant or they have to kick in a bunch of money as part of the naming rights agreement. At this point, it looks like NBA because there doesn't seem to be an NHL team available to relocate...including the Penguins, who I expect to stay.

Here's the thing about Kemper Arena. It is booked for 32 straight days a year for the American Royal rodeo and horse show. So, Kemper can make money without booking another date the entire year.
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Postby FuturePens on Sat Apr 08, 2006 5:00 pm

F Hartford. F Kansas City. Who's with me?
[quote



ME, ME, MEEEE !!!
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Postby HoustonsFinest on Tue Apr 11, 2006 10:22 am

Hartford? Those guys are too small of a market. They should get a team in houston if anything. I hope the pens stay though, nothing worse than losing a team (I had to go through that when the Oilers moved to tennessee). No matter how much of a football/steelers town pittsburgh is, it will still be a sad day for the region if the pens left.
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Postby pfim on Tue Apr 11, 2006 10:45 am

ExPatriatePen wrote:Drafnik, I'm not going to get into a whizzing contest with you. But before the inergration/expansion of the AHL do you realize that he AHL had 7 teams within a two hour drive of Hartford? Do you have any idea that the Hartford market inlcudes Springfield Mass (20 minutes) and all of Western Mass?


Do you realize that it's less than 45 minutes from Providence?

That the Hartford area is third in Hockey rink density in the US behind Boston and Providence? (Ahead of the Twin Cities?)

Let it go... Hartford isn't Nashville, and Nashville has a succesful franchise.


Hartford has a metro population of a little over a million. By comparison, Pittsburgh has 2.2 million in the metro area. Springfield might add another 150k.

Providence is at least 1.5 hours away from Hartford and is Bruins country.
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Postby Alkaline Battery on Tue Apr 11, 2006 1:44 pm

pfim wrote:Hartford has a metro population of a little over a million. By comparison, Pittsburgh has 2.2 million in the metro area. Springfield might add another 150k.


Hartford's metro population is 1.3 miilion as of 2004. Springfield, located just 20 miles to the north, has a metro population of 600,000.

Hartford/Springfield Metro = 1.9 million

And that 1.9 million is not even considering New Haven (35 miles south of Hartford) , with a metro population over 600,000 as well. As a matter of fact, the Hartford TV market is called "Hartford/New Haven" and is ranked the 28th largest TV market in the US. Pittsburgh, for example, isn't much higher, at #22.

http://www.nielsenmedia.com/DMAs.html

Also, metro Hartford is the 6th wealthiest metro in the entire nation ($52,000 median household income), and as I'm sure many of you already know, the state of Connecticut ranks 1st by a large margin. The people are here, and they are some of the richest people in the country. For comparison, the Pittsburgh metro ranks at #153 for median household income at $37,000.

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthr ... ord+income

The problem with the Whalers was that they were in Hartford for 25 years (18 years in the NHL) and only had 3 winning seasons. As much as we loved the Whale, they were the worst team in the history of the NHL. That's what caused attendance numbers to hover around 12,000 per game.

Finally, someone talked about Hartford being a "depressed: area, much like Pittsburgh. There is some truth to that - Hartford has suffered greatly over the last 40+ years since everyone packed their bags and left for the suburbs. However, consider this, the Pittsburgh metro is actually losing population while Hartford metro is gaining. Sure, we aren't gaining nearly as many people as the Sun Belt cities, but neither is any city in the north.

However, within the last couple years a major revitalization effort has taken over downtown Hartford. We've got new, expenseive condo's poppping up all over downtown. As a matter of fact, Mr. Gottesdiener is just now putting the finishing touches on the tallest apartment tower in New England. To give you guys an idea, the only cities with a taller apartment building in the Northeast are New York and Philly. Why would their be these developments if the city was so stagnant? The answer is - it isn't anymore. People want to move back into Hartford, and the new construction is proof of that. Hartford still has along way to go, but it's nothing like it was 5 or 10 years ago. New apartments/condos/restaurants/shopping are under construction all over the city. Heck, ESPN has a plan to open up some sort of attraction in downtown Hartford over the next year or two. ESPN feels Hartford is coming back too, otherwise they wouldn't be investing their own money in the city. People are moving back to the downtown area and getting excited about the future. That is why Hartford is now trying to get an NHL or NBA team, because we are on the upswing and the sky is the limit.

As far as the person who made the comment about "uCon" football, well you obviously have issues with UConn if you are calling them "uCon". Don't let your personal issues blind you to what has become an incredibly successful stadium. You are right about one thing - 5 years ago there was some bickering and protesting from residents because they did not want to foot the bill for the stadium, but today everyone is extremely happy it was built. Uconn games are all sellouts (and UConn isn't even a good team yet!) The stadium turned out to be a great deal - the US Men's National Soccer team is coming back in a month to play their second match in as many years at the stadium. In other words, it's been a huge success. Calling the stadium a "fiasco" is completely misguided and couldn't be farther from the truth.

I have no negative feelings towards Pittsburgh, in fact, I'm feel sad if you guys lost the Pens because I would hate to "steal" a team away from a city that deserves a team. But if you guys don't get your stadium deal done, then I'd be happy to take the Pens. In all honestly, as much as I'd love to have a hockey team back in Hartford, I'd rather see the Pens stay in Pittsburgh and instead get a team from one of the southern markerts like Nashville, Atlanta, Florida, or dare I say...Carolina. :wink:
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Postby HoustonsFinest on Tue Apr 11, 2006 8:03 pm

I'll make you a wager that none of those "southern" teams will move, and that you wont get the whalers again.
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Postby Draftnik on Tue Apr 11, 2006 11:17 pm

Alkaline Battery wrote:As far as the person who made the comment about "uCon" football, well you obviously have issues with UConn if you are calling them "uCon". Don't let your personal issues blind you to what has become an incredibly successful stadium. You are right about one thing - 5 years ago there was some bickering and protesting from residents because they did not want to foot the bill for the stadium, but today everyone is extremely happy it was built. Uconn games are all sellouts (and UConn isn't even a good team yet!) The stadium turned out to be a great deal - the US Men's National Soccer team is coming back in a month to play their second match in as many years at the stadium. In other words, it's been a huge success. Calling the stadium a "fiasco" is completely misguided and couldn't be farther from the truth.


6 uCon home games per year and a Soccer game do not = $90M worth of good ROI. The NHL never wanted to be in Hartford and won't move back. Where is the Conn legislature plan to give the guy with the long name $250M for his arena?

uCon = Rudy Gay, Beltway Ballers 40+ year old fat guys with no uniforms, NCAA rule change prohibiting NCAA exhibition games (for $35K or $0K) versus AAU teams
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