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07-12-2005, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Fletch
I don't think all four expansion teams have done well, but that's not the point. Did the league need four new expansion teams, or did a team need to move from Miami; from Carolina; or from Anaheim?

And I do not know how Bettman's done a good job. The sport is down there insofar as popularity among what's consider sports. It's come down to sponsors supporting poker, bowling, and other 'events' or sports over hockey. I don't see how that's a good thing. As for saving the sport...contracting the four worse teams in terms of revenues the last several years may've been a place to start. The league would've survived with a different CBA too, by the way; he and the owners were lucky enough players likely couldn't afford to sit any longer.
Hockey is a longterm project. You are right in that the NHL had the spotlight there for awhile and blew it. I think that trend followed Gretzy's and the New York Rangers' decline tho. If the three big markets get it goin', I think it will fire up the league's image again.

Sadly, the Rangers and Kings have a long way to go and the Blackhawks are still (and forever) owned by a Wirtz. I don't even think the Hawks were on TV or even the radio the last season played!

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