Tag Archives: Canada

Arena of Dreams

Greetings readers,

As you know, we’re about ready for this upcoming hockey season. Preseason games have already started, and the NHL has filled a 15-year void in Winnipeg, Manitoba. As luck would have it, there’s some shuffling going on in Quebec (who are 16-years and counting without a hockey team.) Yes, I know I already wrote an article about the Quebec Nordiques, but I figured this would help me get out of my writing slump.

Recently, a bill was passed dealing with a new arena in Quebec City. With this new arena, perhaps we can see the northern-most NHL skate again? As of right now, there’s no promise of the NHL returning to Quebec City. There’s no promises of expansion, relocation, or anything else. While building an arena that is regulated for a NHL team is a positive step, there’s no guarantees.

What exactly does this bill do? Is it just for the arena to be built? Not exactly. Bill 204 is to protect the company from lawsuits.

According to the article from CBC, the bill is designed to protect Montreal-based Quebecor from any lawsuit dealing with the arena. It also gives Quebecor control of the estimated $400 Million arena.

In exchange, Quebecor would shell out $33 million, about 15 per cent of the profits, and would agree to use the arena for community events. Out of the 125 seats available in the legislature, 98 agreed to pass Bill 204.

While the article makes it seem that it’s imminent that we’d see the return of Quebec in the NHL (and so does this one, interviewing the owner who moved the original franchise to Colorado), it seems like the comments are going the other away.

If you check out the comments of the CBC article, there’s some actually hoping the Nordiques never return. There’s one that says that the Nordiques 2.0 won’t be the same in terms of the rivalry with the Montreal Canadians, the team itself, and everything else. There’s one comment also quoting how this is a lot of money to possibly get the team back.

I’ll be honest when I say I have no knowledge on the government processes of Quebec City, the province of Quebec, and Canada, but why would there be a need to pass a bill just to protect an arena building? It does seem crooked to me. Apparently, the commentators agree too. Just look at most of those comments.

While I would love to see the Quebec Nordiques return, I don’t want to see the government tax innocent citizens that might have troubles staying alive. If it’s based on someone’s ego or someone’s health, I don’t want to see it happen.

So…the Quebec Nordiques. Will we see them again? Possibly. Will we see a new arena being built for no reason as the NHL says no to a relocation or expansion? Maybe.

Only time will tell.

Sources of information from the Canadian Broadcasting Centre and NBC Sports. Picture from bestsportsphotos.com.

Until next time,

-Lee

Advertisements

Flight of the Thrashers

Greetings readers,

It’s official. The Atlanta Thrashers have been sold to True North Sports and Entertainment. Pending a decision by the NHL Board of Governor’s approval, the city of Winnipeg will have a NHL team for the first time since 1996. They will play in the MTS Centre, and the Manitoba Moose will move to another location in Canada, quite possibly Saint John.

This marks the second time in history that Atlanta has lost a NHL franchise to the North. The Calgary Flames once called the southern city home for eight years, going to the playoffs in six of those.

There was an interview on NPR with national hockey writer Scott Burnside, explaining why the Thrashers franchise didn’t work.

So what’s new with the moving franchise? Are they picking a new name? Are they drawing up new logos?

Nope. True North is selling season tickets. The goal is 13,000. There’s also a FAQ for existing Moose season ticket holders, people looking to be the first people to see the new generation of NHL Hockey in Winnipeg, and other tidbits.

There is another interesting article from SB Nation Atlanta, saying that True North will retire the old Jets numbers (9, 25) but not the Thrashers sets. The article does mention that Dan Snyder’s number might be retired since he was killed in a car accident, and it wasn’t an official retired number. However, you could say that the retiring of those two numbers could point in some positive light for the fans of the old Jets.

The selling is official, now we just play the waiting game. It’s already an exciting offseason for the Nation Hockey League.

Sources of information from the Global BC, NPR, driveto13.com (NHL), and SB Nation Atlanta. Picture from SB Nation Atlanta.

Until next time,

-Lee