It might just be me, but if it’s not, I really want to hear from those who agree. Why are the Thrashers moving while the Coyotes stay?
While the deal isn’t 100% completed, it’s almost certain now that the Atlanta Thrashers will soon be relocated to Winnipeg. Meanwhile, the Phoenix Coyotes will remain in the desert in Glendale. One of these thing is not like the other.
Why? Because while both of these teams have trouble drawing fans to their arena, Atlanta does better attendance wise. As a matter of fact, While both teams averaged a building capacity of under 75%, the Thrashers drew over 35,000 more people to their games. Not a massive number by any means, but something to look at for sure.
While the two teams have troubles off the ice, and while Phoenix has had more success off the ice, having a hockey market in Atlanta makes more sense to me than one in Phoenix.
In a article posted in 2009 by a Scott Taylor from River City Sports Blogs, the total revenue amount the Phoenix Coyotes had lost was near $400 million. Now tack on two years and you know that number has grown as it’s rumored by the Sports Jury that the Coyotes lost $37 million this year alone.
According to Forbes, the Phoenix Coyotes ranked 30th value wise in the entire National Hockey League. That said, the Atlanta Thrashers ranked 29th.
It’s a tough draw between who is actually moved, I feel that Phoenix should be the first one moved.
Less of a fan base, bigger problems off the ice, losing far to much money to remain a stable franchise in Phoenix, plus the history the Coyotes have in Winnipeg, as the team originally moved from Winnipeg to Phoenix in 1996.
It makes more sense to me to move Phoenix over Atlanta.
Another problem created with the Thrashers being moved is the division alignments. One team from the west will have to east. There are three possible teams that could be moved.
First you have the Nashville Predators, a team that sits the closest to the Atlanta franchise and could move into the south east division. Problem is, The Predators are one of three teams in the central division that sit in central time zone. That is something to keep in mind. So while it remains the closest geography wise, it’s the least likely of the three choices to move east.
Next is the Detroit Red Wings, and let me say as a Blues fan, I’d love to see the Wings go east, but is it possible? While they have reportedly wanted to move east for a long time now, it’s still unlikely that the Wings do move into the eastern conference. Why you ask? Well, it’s because of the fact that the Wings and the Hawks are the only two original six teams that lie in the west. Or the fact that the Wings have a massive rivalry with the Chicago Blackhawks as well. Not to mention their rivalry with the Avalanche, Ducks, and the Blues. In my opinion, they would go before the Predators, but not before the Columbus Blue Jackets.
That’s right, Columbus, one of the youngest franchise in the NHL, and the youngest in the West. Sitting in Ohio, which is in the eastern standard time, and on the map is the closest team in the west to the east. A team that hasn’t had a winning tradition, has no real rivalry against any team in the West, but is forming a pretty good one with the Pittsburgh Penguins. I feel that the Blue Jackets are the most likely team to move and they make the most sense.
By moving Columbus to the eastern conference, you don’t break away any real rivalry, you travel is easier for other teams, it just fits.
Now while I disagree with moving Thrashers before the Coyotes, it’s looking far more likely by the day, and with moving them to Winnipeg, a realignment must occur, but that matter is another blog entirely.
Now you know my feelings about it, tell me yours?