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Why Won't The WHA Succeed???

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07-21-2004, 12:23 AM
  #1
Licentia
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Why Won't The WHA Succeed???

I don't understand why people think this league will fail. If they can sign some of these players (And I read an article today saying Simon Gagne from Philadelphia is interested), then why wouldn't it succeed? They have $5 mil set aside to nab an NHL star on every team (Except Halifax who didn't draft one, unless they pay Travis Green $5 million. Ha!) Simon Gagne has only been offered about $3 mil to play in the NHL with Philadelphia. Why wouldn't he jump?

Many of the players will be paid their salaries ahead of time to make sure they make the jump.

Martin St. Louis has mentioned interest in this league as well. Lots of top players will jump for that kind of cash. Plus lots of great junior players will make the jump to the WHA instead of playing another year in Junior.

What if the WHA offers Crosby $2 million to play in the league? Why risk injury playing in the juniors making $500 or so a week, if you can make $1 or $2 million in the WHA?? Only an idiot would turn that down! And if Crosby succeeds in the league he would get the $5 million franchise player salary. And I wouldn't be suprised if the league would share his salary to pay him more if they needed like they once did with Bobby Hull.

Look at the plan the WHA has in place! It makes sense. They can get top talents and yet still play in small market cities. Plus, one of the reasons the NHL doesn't get fans in the southern USA is the price of tickets. WHA tickets will be less then half the price of NHL tickets.

I don't believe for a minute that the WHA will survive in Toronto and Detroit, but the other franchises have a fantastic shot, especially the Canadian teams, especially Quebec city!

All of the owners in the league are apparently worth at least $100 million, so they have the money to pay these players out of their own pockets for a couple of years if necessary. That was an important stipulation that all potential owners would be wealthy enough to be able to stand a few years of money loss. They have the expectation that it will take 2-3 years before they start to make profits. They are prepared for that.

Yes, they are certainly rushing things so they can get started in time for an October 29th drop of the puck. But rushing to get started doesn't equal a poor business plan. They have a very smart plan on how to make this game appeal to the fans of these cities, and I see no reason why they wouldn't.

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07-21-2004, 12:41 AM
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Blue_and_White
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I agree completely. Go Toros.

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07-21-2004, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Licentia
(And I read an article today saying Simon Gagne from Philadelphia is interested), .
Where is this article? Not that I don't believe you, just i'm interested.

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07-21-2004, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneSpeedOnly
Where is this article? Not that I don't believe you, just i'm interested.
I'd also like to see the articles saying all the owners have net worths of $100+ million, that WHA tickets will be half the price of NHL tickets (I've heard them saying an average of US$35, the average NHL ticket is $45), that players are going to be paid their salaries in advance, and that the WHA actually has a coherent "plan" of some sort.

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07-21-2004, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneSpeedOnly
Where is this article? Not that I don't believe you, just i'm interested.
It's in french

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07-21-2004, 12:55 PM
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This league has low cred right now because no teams have coaches or GM's or arena leases. That is why no one can take them seriosuly as of now.

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07-21-2004, 01:14 PM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by La-La-Laprise
This league has low cred right now because no teams have coaches or GM's or arena leases. That is why no one can take them seriosuly as of now.
It's going to be like a snowball headed down hill. It always takes the first couple of guys to sign, be it coaches, GM's, players, etc. before the rest realize it is legit. It will be hard at first, and it is true, there window for getting these things done is closing.

I think the real test will be seeing how people react after the first player is signed.

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07-21-2004, 01:24 PM
  #8
FearTheFlyers
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duff88
Shoulda paid more attention in French class this year

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07-22-2004, 03:59 PM
  #9
Licentia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneSpeedOnly
Where is this article? Not that I don't believe you, just i'm interested.
I've got Google News alerts on the World Hockey Association being delivered to my email everyday.

Here is the location of the article called:

"Flyers star ponders playing in new WHA"

http://www.southjerseynews.com/issues/july/s072004e.htm

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07-22-2004, 04:37 PM
  #10
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As a fan: If it doesn't succeed as a long-term league, it will still be great to see some pro-hockey in N.A. come September. Maybe it will put pressure on the NHL to get off their ***** and do something (or atleast make it look like they are doing something). Imagine Crosby, Cheehoo and Kovalchuk on the same line? With Phaneauf on D? Go TOROS!

IF I was a free-agent (which i'm not): Some guys might jump at the chance to be a part of something at the ground level. (Bobby Hull, Gordie Howe).

IF I was a prospect (Which I AM!!...ok, that's a filthy filthy lie) Yeah, all those guys have dreamed of playing in the NHL, but some might want to play for a year in the WHA before playing in the NHL provided they are able to go back to their junior or other clubs if the lockout resumes.

As a fan of hockey, I hope the WHA succeeds. My only disappointment is that there is no New York franchise. I also don't see why people have pointed to the original WHA folding as a reason for the WHA's failure. If there's no original WHA then there's no Edmonton Oilers, no Phoenix Coyotes, no Carolina Hurricanes, no Colorado Avalanche, no Calgary Flames.

It seems rooting against the World Cup because you're a fan of the Olympics.

PS - if the WHA succeeds, will WHA players be allowed to compete in the Olympics? I doubt any of that has been worked out or thought about, but interesting question that i hope is addressed.

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07-22-2004, 04:37 PM
  #11
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Without being much an expert of the league, my opinion is that the league has every chance to succeed. It certainly has a great opportunity to establish itself this year and can build on that to become a fair-priced alternative to the NHL.

The question is whether or not these guys can organize themselves in time for this season. This season is absolutely crucial for obvious reasons (NHL labor wars).

Lots of people are down on this league and I don't know why. You're all entitled to your opinions and I'm not confident that they WILL organize themselves in time, but as a hockey fan I appreciate what they are trying to do; cheap, entertaining hockey. They can make all the silly rule changes they want -- I'd rather see them tried in the WHA rather than the NHL. If some work out well the NHL has something to consider. The only people competition ever hurts is those who offer an inferior product.

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Old
07-22-2004, 04:45 PM
  #12
Licentia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lard_Lad
I'd also like to see the articles saying all the owners have net worths of $100+ million, that WHA tickets will be half the price of NHL tickets (I've heard them saying an average of US$35, the average NHL ticket is $45), that players are going to be paid their salaries in advance, and that the WHA actually has a coherent "plan" of some sort.
I'm having a hard time finding the articles on the networth because that was late last year when they were still looking for owners. The ticket prices stuff has been written in serveral places from $10 to $65 for tickets, but searching Google News is only giving me pages that say "Fan friendly ticket prices." I have read this stuff.

I think in the Simon Gagne article I read and posted right before this message had a quote from someone in the WHA that they could guarantee the salary for him. (Later: Nope it doesn't. That article has been cut short from the original. Unfortunately lots of these articles only last only for a few days max)


Last edited by Licentia: 07-22-2004 at 04:52 PM.
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07-22-2004, 05:01 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeffyuhTJRest
PS - if the WHA succeeds, will WHA players be allowed to compete in the Olympics? I doubt any of that has been worked out or thought about, but interesting question that i hope is addressed.
I doubt they will be able to compete:

Quote from a website about 1974 Canada vs Russia:

But the WHA did feature The Golden Jet Bobby Hull - known as Booby Hull in Russia. The Jet, as well as stars Tremblay and goalie Gerry Cheevers were able to play against the Soviets this time around, as they were banned from the 1972 Summit Series because of their defection to the upstart league.

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07-22-2004, 05:08 PM
  #14
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Financing

Darryl Sutter was asked about the WHA on local radio in regards to Phaneuf playing there. He basically scoffed at the league and wondered if they were going to find the money to pay the players by doing bottle drives.

Most people I've read in the know don't seem to think it will get off the ground. Got to have arena leases to play, got to have revenues to pay players. Doesn't seem like any of that is guaranteed to happen. I could see a few of the franchises working it out but overall I can't see all the teams getting up and running.

Frankly I'd be shocked if the WHA goes ahead and plays a season.

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07-22-2004, 06:53 PM
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flames Draft Watcher
Financing

Darryl Sutter was asked about the WHA on local radio in regards to Phaneuf playing there. He basically scoffed at the league and wondered if they were going to find the money to pay the players by doing bottle drives.

Most people I've read in the know don't seem to think it will get off the ground. Got to have arena leases to play, got to have revenues to pay players. Doesn't seem like any of that is guaranteed to happen. I could see a few of the franchises working it out but overall I can't see all the teams getting up and running.

Frankly I'd be shocked if the WHA goes ahead and plays a season.
And the NHL scoffed the first time the WHA started, until Bobby Hull left for the WHA. Then the NHL went into panic mode.

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07-22-2004, 07:50 PM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Licentia
I don't understand why people think this league will fail.
Because it's so poorly concocted that it is set up to fail. Two weeks before their draft they had two franchises (in name only, no ownership) bow out. They don't have coaches for the teams either.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Licentia
I read an article today saying Simon Gagne from Philadelphia is interested
Well that article is really getting ahead of itself then.

http://www.courierpostonline.com/pro.../fy072004a.htm

Quote:
"It's flattering," (Gagne's agent Bob) Sauve said. "No one (from the Nordiks) has talked to us, but when they do, we are going to listen and see what happens."

........................

"I would imagine they could offer us that," Sauve said of the $5 million allowed for marquee players. "But our goal right now is to get something done with the Flyers. We'll keep our options open."
Doesn't sound like he's too interested.

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07-22-2004, 11:49 PM
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Licentia
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Quote:
Doesn't sound like he's too interested.
I've never seen a player agent jumping up and down begging a team to sign his player. They are acting disinterested to get a good deal.

Listen to Crosby's agent when he is very against Crosby playing in the WHA. This agent is giving every opportunity for the WHA to contact them and make an offer. I have no doubt that Gagne will play wherever he gets the best offer from.

Some comments from the article:

"It's flattering," Sauve said. "No one (from the Nordiks) has talked to us, but when they do, we are going to listen and see what happens."

- He could have said: "No, Simon is not interested in playing in the WHA."

"WHA players can earn up to $5 million a season, with each team operating under a $15 million salary cap. "I would imagine they could offer us that," Sauve said of the $5 million allowed for marquee players."

- He could have said: "No, we will not accept any offers from the WHA."

"our goal right now is to get something done with the Flyers. We'll keep our options open."

- He could have said: "We are only interested in signing a contract with the Flyers."

I think it's clear they will entertain any offers from Quebec and will sign wherever he gets the best offer. I doubt Philly will offer Gagne $5 million to stay there, while Quebec may be willing.

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07-23-2004, 01:29 AM
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Peter Young, director of hockey operations for the Icebreakers, said that Atlanta did not offer Heatley arbitration. What is wrong with this? Well a player either files for arbitration or declines the option and tries to hammer out something else. You also have to be eligible and Heatley is not. This league is looking extra shoddy, buying time in the hopes they can somehow pull a rabbit out of their ass.

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07-23-2004, 09:28 AM
  #19
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IMO, this league faces 3 main challenges: 1 Administrative stuff; 2 Getting players; 3 Attracting fans.

#1.
This is a disaster so far. Thet don't have names or even cities for all their teams. The ones that have cities don't all have rinks to play in. Not all the teams have GMs or Coaches. Things likes these don't inspire confidence in fans or players.

#2.
With a $15M cap, they shouldn't have any problems attracting good players. Take out the $5M star player exemption, and you have $10M for about 20 players, or $500K per player. At that salary level, they should be able to attract a lot of good pro players. Between older AHL players, North American born pros playing in Europe, and NHL 4th liners/concourse walkers, there should be enough talent to fill 8 teams.

#3
I don't know about other cities, but in Halifax, it's going to be tough to get 7000 fans per game (the reported break-even point) at an average of $60 per ticket, not when you can watch the Mooseheads for $10-$15.


I think #2 will be solved once the league cleans up #1. Players aren't going to sign until the league gets it **** together. Once some players start to sign on, fans will know approximately what kind of product their getting and decide if it's worth the ticket price. It's tough to get fans excited when your team has no lease agreement, no GM, no Coach, and no players, and it's 3 months from opening night.

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07-23-2004, 09:36 AM
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by La-La-Laprise
This league has low cred right now because no teams have coaches or GM's or arena leases. That is why no one can take them seriosuly as of now.
Exactly! There won't be any WHA. This league is a joke and will never see the day.

Today, we learn that Quebec Nordiks is officially dead cause they won't have a place to play cause the Rempart and the Radio X will play for 80% of the time. There's no place for the Nordiks at the Colisť. No place to play= No team. No teams= no league.

The Rangers are the biggest joke of any team (7 consecutive miss playoffs with a top 3 payroll... ) and the WHA is the biggest joke of any league (including the IHL...It says it all).

At least we'll have junior hockey to watch if Bettman and Goodenow can't be intelligent enough...

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07-23-2004, 10:01 AM
  #21
Dr Love
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Licentia
I think it's clear they will entertain any offers from Quebec and will sign wherever he gets the best offer. I doubt Philly will offer Gagne $5 million to stay there, while Quebec may be willing.
No, it's clear that the Flyers are the priority, and if talks fail, then they'll consider the WHA. And even if Gagne signs with the WHA, he isn't going to be the reason why it does or does not succeed.

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