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02-27-2013, 09:32 AM
  #7
tarheelhockey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiggsawpuzzle35 View Post
One of the key figures I look at is attendance. As a ECHL team, if you are averaging more than half of what a AHL team draws, then you should be a good candidate to land a AHL team. Stockton and Ontario have been tops for a while and plus Orlando use to have a IHL team. I'm sure these cities have the financial stability.
Ontario and Orlando would make sense to me. Orlando in particular would help with alignment issues, since it kind of splits the difference between the Texas teams and the NC/VA teams. It would be a good "hub" for road trips by teams swinging through the southeast. I'd look at the Atlanta area as well, for the same reason, possibly forming the foundation of a division centered on GA/FL.

Stockton is a question mark to me... they would really be out there on an island with only Abbotsford within 1000 miles and the next closest team being OKC over 1500 miles away. That just seems like an excessive amount of travel, and they wouldn't be able to lean on their current CA/NV division rivals for home attendance. Seems like it might sabotage their franchise and cost the other teams a lot of money at the same time.

The minor leagues are just so screwy geographically. In a perfect world it would be better to completely re-align and have 2 regional leagues per "A" tier, rather than attempting to have these big national leagues that don't make much money due largely to travel costs.

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