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12-09-2004, 02:58 PM
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If the South were to get the same percentage of athletes playing hockey as the North, then America would likely surpass Canada as the premier hockey nation or atleast catch up with it. They likely won't get to the North's level, but they can make up considerable ground. Legitimate players are popping up in the Dallas market and Florida market. The talent isn't on par with Northern America, but it has decreased the gap significantly. It doesn't have to catch the north to have a significant impact on both American hockey and the NHL as a whole.
don't bank on it. it isn't as if no one is in hockey regions as is, in fact some of the most densely populated regions in the country also happen to have long had hockey being played there. until the best athletes that are produced are consistently playing hockey as their no. 1 sport it is a non-issue. you got a guy like Tom Glavine who was drafted in the 2nd round by the Kings --pretty sure on the 2nd round -- who goes to play baseball instead.

just having places playing hockey isn't going to get you there. you need to have the quality of athlete sticking with the sport, which is going to be hard to do with all the different sports competing for attention and the fact that there are much much better opportunities in other sports for american athletes. on the purely collegiate view, an athlete is so much better off to focus on Football, Basketball, and Baseball in terms of getting a scholarship...

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