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01-29-2004, 05:04 AM
Brooklyn Ranger
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Brooklyn, of course
Posts: 7,510
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There was an article in the Hartford Courant several months ago suggesting that if Ratner was successful in building a new Arena, the Rangers would move their AHL team to Brooklyn (how about the Brooklyn Eagles!?). The why is there is a businessman who wants to buy an AHL franchise (the one that is currently not in operation) and move it to Hartford. He's approached the Dolans about buying at least a part interest in the Wolfpack, but they have refused. I haven't seen this anywhere else and it may be more wishful thinking (the article was very sympathic to the guy who wants to do this--can't remember his name, but I do recall he was involved with the Whalers) but hey, it would make some sense--minor league baseball has been incredibly popular here and since AHL ticket prices are lower, Ratner could fulfill his promise of bringing affordable sports events to the arena.

As for the place they are proposing--I've lived about 20-30 blocks from it all my life. I've passed by at every hour in every sort of weather and during the fall waited for the bus home from across the street in the evenings. The area is completely dead. Almost every subway line in the City stops within two blocks of the site and it would be built over the LIRR tracks. Getting back to Manhattan or Queens or SI by car would take 20-30 minutes (sans traffic of course ).

Will it be built? 50-50 at this point. But there are some very powerful people backing it. The sad thing is, if this had been proposed 15 years ago, there would be almost no one displaced. But, people started moving in and it's become a very vibrant community. The zoning was only recently changed from manufacturing to residential.

As for rooting for a Brooklyn hockey team...Certainly I would, for an AHL team--even if they weren't the baby Rangers. But an NHL team? Nope. If they were a completely new franchise, I wouldn't root against them (except when they face the Rangers), but if they were a transplanted franchise NEVER. And if they were the Devils or the Isles (shudder...).

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