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Re: [hockhist] Re:NHL Doesn't Trust Jim Balsillie

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  • Karkoski James
    ... Phoenix is all about an arena issue. The NHL gets the city of Glendale to pitch in and build an arena and then they are going to let the team move five
    Message 1 of 14 , Aug 1, 2009
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      On 2009/08/01, at 2:05, William Underwood wrote:
      >
      >
      > What will be telling about Bettman is how the league reacts to other
      > relocation bids.would Bettman fight like a tiger if it was say
      > Edmonton
      > trying to move to Vegas? We have not really seen such vehement
      > opposition
      > to that--witness Winnipeg and Quebec.Granted they had facility issue
      > but
      > Bettman seemed to do little to even try to overcome them.
      >










      Phoenix is all about an arena issue. The NHL gets the city of
      Glendale to pitch in
      and build an arena and then they are going to let the team move five
      years after?


      Somebody mentioned it awhile back on the list, the NHL did back the
      drive which kept the Oilers in Edmonton in
      when they let a large ownership group purchase the team at a
      considerably lower price than the bid that was on the
      table to move the team to Houston.



      And I'd attack the weak middle.go to war head to head for
      players ONLY against the weakest markets.



      Start a rival league in the middle of a pretty deep recession?


      James







































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    • Michael Levin
      Besides hating the *Balsillie* bid, Bettman hates the Coyotes ownership group. Further, he has defecated on the city of Glendale. The current bid that Bettman
      Message 2 of 14 , Aug 1, 2009
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        Besides hating the *Balsillie* bid, Bettman hates the Coyotes ownership
        group. Further, he has defecated on the city of Glendale. The current bid
        that Bettman favors essentially only assumes the debt of the Coyotes and
        turns on the city of Glendale giving up more concessions to the Coyotes.

        As to the suggestion of starting a rival league of some sort (the ghost of
        the IHL?), any such effort must incorporate the international size rinks and
        rules. Using NHL rink sizes and NHL rules essentially creates a me too
        product. Why would consumers pay for that?

        As Michael Wilbon, columnist for the Washington Post and co-host of ESPN's
        PTI, notes, every city has die hard hockey fans. Unfortunately, all 18,000
        of them are at the arena. In other words, no television audience exist
        because the live product meets demand. Why would I switch to a league I have
        never heard of, and teams that I know nothing about unless you give me
        alternate product.

        Hockey that uses international rinks and rules posses a threat to the NHL.
        Anything less than that, and Bettman never loses sleep.

        On Sat, Aug 1, 2009 at 9:58 AM, Karkoski James <austin@...> wrote:

        >
        >
        >
        > On 2009/08/01, at 2:05, William Underwood wrote:
        > >
        > >
        > > What will be telling about Bettman is how the league reacts to other
        > > relocation bids.would Bettman fight like a tiger if it was say
        > > Edmonton
        > > trying to move to Vegas? We have not really seen such vehement
        > > opposition
        > > to that--witness Winnipeg and Quebec.Granted they had facility issue
        > > but
        > > Bettman seemed to do little to even try to overcome them.
        > >
        >
        > Phoenix is all about an arena issue. The NHL gets the city of
        > Glendale to pitch in
        > and build an arena and then they are going to let the team move five
        > years after?
        >
        > Somebody mentioned it awhile back on the list, the NHL did back the
        > drive which kept the Oilers in Edmonton in
        > when they let a large ownership group purchase the team at a
        > considerably lower price than the bid that was on the
        > table to move the team to Houston.
        >
        > And I'd attack the weak middle.go to war head to head for
        > players ONLY against the weakest markets.
        >
        > Start a rival league in the middle of a pretty deep recession?
        >
        > James
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
        >
        >


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • William Underwood
        Point by point James. There is more to it than the arena issue in Glendale.yes it is part of the problem but there is also a Camerone mentality (Foreign Legion
        Message 3 of 14 , Aug 1, 2009
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          Point by point James.



          There is more to it than the arena issue in Glendale.yes it is part of the
          problem but there is also a Camerone mentality (Foreign Legion battle where
          there was no surrender rand the last few remaining legionnaires fixed
          bayonets and charged a large Mexican force of course being killed in the
          doing) of "retreat.never".



          As for Edmonton, yes they did make an effort but a rather paltry one as
          compared to here. Of course there was an end game there so we never saw it
          go to the fullest extent. It comes back to the original question."how far
          would they have went?" Nobody ahs that answer but as there is even a
          perception that they might not because it is Canada is highly reflective of
          the image of the league in that country.



          Finally, as far as starting a new league in the middle of a recession.you
          normally would be right. Actually James in this case THERE IS NO BETTER
          TTIME! The recession doesn't hit hockey in Canada as it does the US as it is
          more of a priority item for sponsors and fans. Note that right now there
          have been aside from Balsilllie at least 4 groups whom have inquired about
          an NHL team for Toronto, a group who bid on Montreal talking Quebec, two
          other Canadian groups talking Phoenix one of whom wants to play some games
          in Saskatoon and Halifax.while we have what one group out of the US bid on
          Phoenix! Canadians with money are coming out of the wood work in search of
          teams and how many US investors does the NHL have seriously inquiring about
          a sick franchise? Not many. In the new NHL markets hockey is down on the
          totem pole a bit and when belts tighten it gets dumped.I submit they are
          ripe for an attack.



          When you hit an enemies weak point it is doubly effective if you catch him
          at a time of poor logistics. You create havoc. While your point is correct
          in many situations, having been in the business of promotion for twenty odd
          years and been through the new league thing time and time again ranging from
          the wildly successful to never got of the ground.I have seen it all and also
          learned that paradigms don have exceptions. This is one of them. You are
          talking about starting a product that is not a new one and is a revered one
          in a market with the express purpose of battle with a product that is weak
          in the target markets to attack in a weak economy. Now if we were talking
          introductory product in a new market your logic would be flawless and if the
          competitor was well entrenched in all markets like the NHL of say 25 years
          ago, it would be suicide. Remember in the 70's the NHL was not in a
          completely different scenario.weak franchise sin Oakland, KC, Atlanta et al
          and the economy was in an inflationary era in 72 then a recession as the oil
          crisis hit. The WHA made it through SEVEN years largely because the NHL had
          its own fiscal problems. I also submit that if done in conjunction with the
          Russians you are talking two oil producing nations going to bat together.
          Not only do you have a formidable ally who wants their own venture to
          succeed that is in so many word state subsidized, but also you have a
          natural differentiation. You are not just the NHL wanna be but you offer an
          international dimension. You have a Canada/Russia rivalry and the dual
          tailed nationalistic angle of Canada having its own league but also socking
          it to Gary. Quite frankly there may be no better time for it.





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        • William Underwood
          Actually 8000 a game was pretty good for a new league. Now when you look closer at WHA attendance in Canada it is actually more impressive than that.Edmonton
          Message 4 of 14 , Aug 1, 2009
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            Actually 8000 a game was pretty good for a new league. Now when you look
            closer at WHA attendance in Canada it is actually more impressive than
            that.Edmonton was over 10,000 the last two years.Quebec and Winnipeg closer
            to 9000.Quebec only seated 10004 in those days, Winnipeg 10031 so they had
            nearly 90 % capacity filled. The Toros had over 10000 one year despite
            Harold giving them lousy dates and nearly 9000 the next year despite a bad
            team. Granted Ottawa, Calgary and Vancouver did not do as well but Calgary
            played in the old Corral.



            No second league in its right mind expects to MATCH the existent league! He
            who plans for that is on some serious wed! :-) My rule of thumb is if you
            can start out at 50 % capacity you are doing good. History tells us not to
            expect more. The only rival league in ANY sport that did better was the old
            AAFC but they really were an anomaly! They actually out drew the
            established league in head to head markets in LA and New York and had a
            better league wide average attendance.of course in Chicago they were a
            disaster! But they were a part of the post WW II boom in the late 40's and
            it was before TV and the real rise of pro football.



            Now if you are not paying what the NHL does across the board you don't need
            their revenues, plus if you do something that they don't, do revenue sharing
            you make the entity stronger. Even if you do as I suggest, go after the
            weaklings you will have more teams than the weak point of the line that you
            are attacking nr will you bat 100 % on their players.add on you have the
            Russians to go after certain players from them especially the Europeans. The
            low end of your line up and farm players CAN NOT GET BIG MONEY! There are
            also structure for both revenue and payrolls that have not been well
            explored by traditional leagues some of which are quite novel. One was
            broached to me a while back that I can't really discuss publicly that was
            FASCINATING for the minor pro level but there is NO REASON why it could not
            be applied to a larger venture.only the NFL has even scratched the surface
            on the sort of concept for the revenue side. They can even open up PR opps
            and tax situations that would be VERY positive for investors but are simply
            not possible the way that franchises, contracts, Players Associations and
            league by laws are structured by traditional leagues. A new venture need not
            be constrained by them.



            If you put together the right sort of league you could do at least as well
            at the gate as the WHA maybe even better as it is a different era, it is
            much easier to promote stuff today. They did not have the technology that we
            do. And remember, it can all be structured so you don't NEED NHL size crowds
            to cut it.



            As for the Canadian teams.I don't think that they would be hurt and in fact
            you would go out of your way NOT to do so.by not attacking them directly yet
            having a presence in Canada that they get no piece of offers them a possible
            motive for future merger. They would feel pressure as you would be another
            entity in their back yard but you would not attack their pay rolls. You
            would also try to cultivate the wealthier teams by again, not attacking them
            as it would be futile. What you want to do is to take that weak part of the
            NHL and make it a liability for the stronger part and given their stance on
            revenue sharing and that many teams imply lack the funs to help the weak you
            would put leverage on them for a merger."merge and take in our cities or
            lose teams and credibility." That is sort of what the WHA did."we may not
            make a ton of money but we will bleed you where it hurts." the NHL lost a
            team and had several others on the brink by the end.And to once again
            address another post.the recession was actually an ally of the WHA. They
            were relatively lean and mean and actually had a plan to go international
            had there been no merger. They had retreated down to three strong Canadian
            clubs and one strong US club at the core with two very wealthy groups in
            other markets to fill out the league who could weather the storm. The NHL
            had weak links back then too and the economy out them in a worse
            scenario.remember we EXPECT teams to move and old in new leagues now old
            leagues. In one it is what you plan to se in the other it is a extraordinary
            thing.



            Now no one says it would be a slam dunk success but at some point it is an
            option if all others fail. Rival leagues are created when established ones
            fail to serve their market. The KHL ahs happened because the NHL ahs always
            treated Europe very badly. As they ignore/turn down one Canadian city and
            group after another they run the risk of the same thing happening at home.
            This is not like other sports where there simply is no market left open, the
            NHL is like the NBA leaving several basketball hot beds open and expanding
            into great hoops towns like Montreal, Edmonton and Vancouver to "expand the
            borders of their game" or the NFL dumping US markets where there is support
            to start Euro teams. The markets and owners are there.and worse yet for
            them there is a European side to the equation with money and a string sense
            of nationalism. So while it might not be easy the time might be PERFECT for
            an INTER KONTIENTAL (no typo.unlike the NHL you RESPECT other nationalities
            so the "K" stays) HOCKEY ASSOCIATION!







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          • William Underwood
            Note, when I say that the goal is 50 % capacity I don t mean in a really small building! :-) And before one brings up the KHL.European hockey has entirely
            Message 5 of 14 , Aug 1, 2009
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              Note, when I say that the goal is 50 % capacity I don't mean in a really
              small building! :-) And before one brings up the KHL.European hockey has
              entirely different standards as their financial structure and tax laws
              differ.a notable example being rugby in Italy. There is a lot of money in
              Italian rugby, enough so that they made many of the Wallaby players form
              Australia such highly paid schmamateurs in the early 90's that they could
              not afford go pro in rugby league! Now those teams drew small crowds But the
              Italian government gave SERIOUS tax right offs for sports sponsorship.



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            • William Underwood
              You don t need millions of Americans to switch .just x number of CANADIANS who want their cities to have teams and resent Bettman. The Washington Post
              Message 6 of 14 , Aug 2, 2009
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                You don't need millions of Americans to "switch".just x number of CANADIANS
                who want their cities to have teams and resent Bettman. The Washington Post
                columnist is right.about the US.not Canada! And the idea is a CANADIAN
                dominated league. The goal in the US would be sheerly to get the more like
                10000 fans in the weak markets to dip to 5000 not because of another league
                to watch but rather they don't want to watch their pathetic mess of a
                franchise! The marketing is directed toward CANADA for the PRECISE reason
                that this is a topic.the NHL has teams where as the columnist accurately
                points out here are few to no fans but doesn't where there are fans.Canadian
                fans don't need hockey laced with NHL stars to come out and see it.ask any
                Leaf fan! :-) Why would customers pay for it? Because it is a chance for
                Quebec, Hamilton, Winnipeg et al to see high level hockey. Because it is a
                league that is CANADIAN and does not forget the game's roots or most loyal
                fans. And because each dollar spent on it is a way to stick it to Gary
                Bettman who has for ten years derided them if not in words but by action. It
                is a chance for Canada to have what every top Euro nation has , a league to
                call its own. And it is a chance to say "bleep off Gary, we will show you
                the price for not letting us in your league and you had better think again."



                You are underestimating this stuff. Remember CFL fans in Canada do not rally
                around the NFL. The Bills were rather disappointed in Toronto. They thought
                "well CFL is not even really big league ball anymore so of we come
                Torontonians and Canadians of every sort will scream hallaleaujah!" They
                didn't. Why? Say what we want about the CFL, it is CANADIAN and has that
                CANADIAN content which apparently means something. I'm actually surprised at
                the number of emails that I have gotten off line saying "great idea"..



                And calling it an "IHL" is WAY off base! The "I" was always a league that
                was essentially a league with mixed identity.most of it wanted to stay minor
                pro a FEW teams wanted better.they only had a few players of bona fide NHL
                caliber.the KHL has already done better than that! They would get the odd
                hold out to play but leave as soon as the hold out ended and the very odd
                good young Euro.it never really became anything more than a very good AAA
                league. A league with this sort of ownership and goals would take more god
                players. The IHL's budget for most clubs was always miniscule. This would
                not be the ghost of the IHL but the WHA and actually much more formidable
                with wealthy foreign allies and not feeling the need that the WHA did, to go
                into what were either weak US markets or US markets with not enough room for
                another hockey team.



                Finally if they go messing with your weakest team Bettman BETTER lose
                sleep.how many people will pay to see a loser in the newer cities? How many
                will stick with instability? All you have to do is to push already weak
                teams that bit farther toward the cliff.



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              • William Underwood
                Incidentally Mike you don t need to go to international rules or ice surfaces to differentiate the game.try on full 2 minutes served for all minors ala pre
                Message 7 of 14 , Aug 2, 2009
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                  Incidentally Mike you don't need to go to international rules or ice
                  surfaces to differentiate the game.try on full 2 minutes served for all
                  minors ala pre 1956.get rid of the transom and big creases, back to the
                  smaller squares and allow goalies to come out but strike the rule (read it
                  sometime it makes you say to yourself that there are more rules conditions
                  about how to legally clobber these guys than there are for getting tax write
                  offs) that says that you have to try to avoid hitting them when they leave
                  the crease they are just weird looking D so they do so at their own
                  risk.dump the instigator rule and let the players police themselves.bring
                  back the banana blade.go to a 3-2-1-0 point system 3 for a regulation time
                  win, 2 for a OT win 1 for a shoot out win and NONE for a loss..go to the
                  Olympic rule on face offs which is a very limited time to get the change and
                  set or the puck drops.use the old WHA icing rule, as I recall it was to ice
                  the puck when short you have to clear the blue line.get rid of time outs,
                  sorry but Punch Imlach, Toe Blake and generations of great coaches lived
                  without them so lets keep the darn game moving.and if you want international
                  rules you use them for games against European teams if there are any in the
                  regular season and for sure in a final series which could be a best of 7
                  game final, 3 hosted by team A, three by team B and we go back to A for 7 if
                  needed so there would only be two trips max! Regular season inter
                  continental play could be handled a lot like the ECHL does, you have a
                  choice of how much but each team MUST go across the pond for at least one
                  small block of games. It could be say three in Moscow and that is it! Or
                  maybe three in Ontario.two in Hamilton one in Toronto.keep it limited, a
                  special change of pace and cheap! You don't have to make the game European
                  hockey which may not go here to make it different.I'd also look at for non
                  international games going with a 16 and 2 line up.it cuts costs. You also
                  would not need the farm systems that the NHL has, they would RUN your farm
                  system in effect as you would raid their minors for your players. The WHA
                  did that! You have maybe 25 or 26 guys under contract. It saves you money
                  again. Another interesting concept that I have seen proposed is to have a
                  pooled farm system, that is x number pf players are signed to LEAGUE
                  contracts and open to everyone! You could actually hybridize it and go with
                  maybe 23 contract players per team then a league pool of x number open on
                  first come first served.thus teams could again save costs.



                  There are ways to differentiate that would make EVERYONE happy form the "not
                  enough hitting/fighting folks to the "not enough scoring" folks. You may
                  even be able to lighten up on zero tolerance and get MORE goals.you heard
                  that right! Why? Because every minor is a FULL two minutes! It can cost you
                  two goals against a good PP. Thus you would learn to not take the dumb two
                  but you could still be allowed to hit more! And with no instigator a lot of
                  dirty garbage may decline and we may see a few more legit fights. With the
                  PP rule, the goalie now more encouraged to stay put as if they are caught
                  with that puck they can be purposely freight trained like any D, banana
                  blades and chicken coaching being penalized as it would cost you a point the
                  minute that you go into OT tied, you would see scoring go up. So lets see a
                  league with more goals, a bit more hitting , a bit more fighting, less dead
                  time for changes and time outs a bit to appeal to old time hockey yet also
                  appeal to new hockey.how different is that?



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                • William Underwood
                  And more bits of differentiation.perhaps have an import rule, say 4 non Canadians and if you go into the US a minimal number of American/US produced
                  Message 8 of 14 , Aug 2, 2009
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                    And more bits of differentiation.perhaps have an import rule, say 4 non
                    Canadians and if you go into the US a minimal number of American/US produced
                    players.maybe even a draft where teams get to select a local first.Adding a
                    US team or two might be an idea then as you get a Canadian/US rivalry in
                    there since it would be more Canadian versus American players. And
                    add/encourage COLOR. Remember the old days when Punch Imlach called Vachon a
                    junior B goalie? Remember when Melrose and Burns had the "Billy Ray
                    Cyrus/Wayne Newton" quotes? The days when then Ranger Gump Worsley answered
                    in an interview when asked which NHL team gave him the toughest time and he
                    didn't miss a beat and said "the Rangers."? Or wasn't it Gerry Cheevers who
                    after a blow out was asked what happened and he said "roses are red violets
                    are blue they got 10 and we only got 2." The No Humor League cracks down the
                    minute a guy gets even a little but fun! Guys like Brett Hull and Roenick
                    are PRECISELY what should be unleashed.mouths that roar and have THE
                    quote.Be the league that is about FUN not corporate homogenized politically
                    correct dullness! A league that is about FANS not SUITS and you know
                    something the suits will buy it. Why? They want to sell their various
                    products to the FANS who outnumber them! To go t an extreme ask Vince
                    MacMahon who makes being non PC but fun a life style and they can't buy
                    enough of him! Not that I am suggesting going that off the wall but
                    everything in healthy doses.and the man took a nearly dead product and made
                    into an entertainment empire because he remembered the object.to ENTERTAIN!
                    On a less extreme, Canadian will understand this one.I love the Blue Bomber
                    coach Kelly, he is not afraid to have fun! He derided the shot gun in a fun
                    way sort of saying it was for the brain dead and when he was asked about his
                    QB situation asked sideline reporter Sara Orelsky..: "can you throw?" Or
                    yesterday when his punter made the most bizarre mess of a fake punt and his
                    won guy sort made like fair catch of it (not legal) he didn't scream, he
                    laughed along with the rest of us! GREAT STUFF, This man deserves a Grey
                    Cup! This is what it is all about.FUN! Leagues like the NHL forget that and
                    take it all too seriously as if it was a war not a GAME that is about
                    ENTERTAINMENT and FUN! Make personality a big part of who you hire, this
                    game has a lot of characters and people who are dying to be colorful if you
                    only let them. HIRE THEM and let them know that they have a lot of rope
                    within reason to run with things, it is ok to be fun.



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                  • epenaltybox
                    My favorite, in honor of his retirement today: I don t know what Patrick was doing the other night. I think he had to go up in the stands of the United
                    Message 9 of 14 , Aug 5, 2009
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                      My favorite, in honor of his retirement today:

                      "I don't know what Patrick was doing the other night. I think he had to go up in the stands of the United Center to get his jockstrap." Jeremy Roenick to Patrick Roy, via the media

                      Patrick's response:

                      "I don't care what Jeremy says. Besides, I can't hear him because my two Stanley Cup rings are in my ears..."

                      Morey

                      --- In hockhist@yahoogroups.com, "William Underwood" <wausport@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Remember the old days when Punch Imlach called Vachon a
                      > junior B goalie? Remember when Melrose and Burns had the "Billy Ray
                      > Cyrus/Wayne Newton" quotes? The days when then Ranger Gump Worsley answered
                      > in an interview when asked which NHL team gave him the toughest time and he
                      > didn't miss a beat and said "the Rangers."?
                    • William Underwood
                      YES, the Roenicks and Hulls were breaths of fresh air.now what do we have.Avery? :-) [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      Message 10 of 14 , Aug 6, 2009
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                        YES, the Roenicks and Hulls were breaths of fresh air.now what do we
                        have.Avery? :-)



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