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What About AHL Expansion???

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05-01-2013, 08:18 AM
  #1
Inglewood JMFJ
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What About AHL Expansion???

With the talk of NHL expansion how do they get there farm clubs? Does the AHL expand or are there current AHL teams without an NHL affiliate? How does this work?

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05-01-2013, 08:42 AM
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tsujimoto74
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Not sure. I know NHL teams can share an AHL affiliate. Buffalo and Florida were the dual parent clubs for the Rochester Americans during the 05-06 season.

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05-01-2013, 08:57 AM
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An expansion team wouldn't have a boatload of prospects immediately. Only one drafts worth who unless they take overagers wouldn't be AHL eligible. They'd get 26 players in an expansion draft so 5 would be in the AHL likely. They would likely also pick up a couple fringe players to not take some unprotected players. So I would guess they use an ECHL team or share an AHL team with a team who has crap for prospects for a couple seasons while they sign college/undrafted UFAs to try and fill a team.

In the past Columbus immediately affiliated with Syracuse though and they ended up having nobody who would play a true role for the Jackets on that first year team and Darche is the only one who became an NHLer. I really don't think an expansion team needs an AHL team immediately, as all it is is financial loss for no reason. You aren't going to be developing **** the first season.

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05-01-2013, 09:19 AM
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Lonewolfe2015
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I have to imagine the financial requirements for an AHL expansion would be a massive sink on any new franchise. The AHL isn't all that profitable as it is and a lot of teams have to move around to try and break even.

Maybe 3-4 years down the road the two new teams get their affiliates in place somewhere. This is probably a better discussion for the business section though, those guys might have an idea of the financial implications of expanding in the AHL and if there are any places that could sustain a couple more franchises.

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05-01-2013, 09:56 AM
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If the NHL were expanding to a city like Quebec, or Toronto2, they would probably be making a tidy profit from day one.

In that case it would make perfect sense to get their AHL franchise set up as soon as possible. That gives them a head start on getting the coaching staff and development support staff in place, as well as a place for any college or other free agents they sign to play.

I'm not sure exactly how the expansion draft works, but if they pick up any borderline NHLers in that draft it gives them a place to go as well. No reason to wait.

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05-01-2013, 04:20 PM
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An nhl team doesn't HAVE to have an ahl team right?

Isn't St. Louis management getting rid of the rivermen?

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05-01-2013, 04:41 PM
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Originally Posted by ovenbaked View Post
An nhl team doesn't HAVE to have an ahl team right?

Isn't St. Louis management getting rid of the rivermen?
They would likely still affiliate with another team - you have to have somewhere to put your prospects.

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05-01-2013, 05:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonewolfe2015 View Post
I have to imagine the financial requirements for an AHL expansion would be a massive sink on any new franchise. The AHL isn't all that profitable as it is and a lot of teams have to move around to try and break even.

Maybe 3-4 years down the road the two new teams get their affiliates in place somewhere. This is probably a better discussion for the business section though, those guys might have an idea of the financial implications of expanding in the AHL and if there are any places that could sustain a couple more franchises.
Outside of the few teams that own their affiliates, my understanding is that the AHL affiliates actually are the ones who pay NHL clubs for the affiliation agreement... So yeah that would be a sink on a new AHL club. It might make more sense to 'promote' an ECHL club or two depending on location? Then you have an existing franchise that gets to step into a slightly bigger league... and I believe that's happened once or twice before?

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05-01-2013, 06:11 PM
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Outside of the few teams that own their affiliates, my understanding is that the AHL affiliates actually are the ones who pay NHL clubs for the affiliation agreement... So yeah that would be a sink on a new AHL club. It might make more sense to 'promote' an ECHL club or two depending on location? Then you have an existing franchise that gets to step into a slightly bigger league... and I believe that's happened once or twice before?
Charlottte comes to mind where the owner of the ECHL Checkers purchased the Albany River Rats and moved them to Charlotte to become the AHL Charlotte Checkers. As a side note I wouldn't mind seeing something similiar happen to Gwinnett but Chapman and the ownership group have to make that decision that they want to purchase an AHL team. I think they looked into it a few years ago but decided it wasn't worth the cost.

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05-01-2013, 06:31 PM
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I am surprised that Gwinnett has not made the jump to the AHL. They have a great arena and with Charlotte and Norfolk, would make some great regional rivalries.

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05-01-2013, 06:59 PM
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I am surprised that Gwinnett has not made the jump to the AHL. They have a great arena and with Charlotte and Norfolk, would make some great regional rivalries.
The Arena itself is indeed a nice place but the management at the arena screwed up bigtime this year by not holding playoff dates for the team. Thus Gwinnett had to play 5 straight games(if necessary) in Cincinnati

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05-01-2013, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by SenorChifles View Post
I am surprised that Gwinnett has not made the jump to the AHL. They have a great arena and with Charlotte and Norfolk, would make some great regional rivalries.
There is no "jumping". They would have to buy a current AHL franchise. If the NHL expanded to 32 team the AHL would most likely grant 2 new AHL franchise licenses.

Expansion NHL teams have affiliated since day 1 with a minor league team Nashville with Milwaukee, Atlanta with Orlando.

A new AHL team would moist likely not be stocked with prospects from the parent NHL team but would go out and sign a bunch of players from the lower leagues or draft picks not signed by the NHL team that drafted them.

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05-03-2013, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by GwtGlads2013 View Post
The Arena itself is indeed a nice place but the management at the arena screwed up bigtime this year by not holding playoff dates for the team. Thus Gwinnett had to play 5 straight games(if necessary) in Cincinnati
Well if I recall they missed the playoffs the last 2 years, guess I couldnt blame them.

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05-03-2013, 09:01 AM
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Well if I recall they missed the playoffs the last 2 years, guess I couldnt blame them.
They missed the playoffs in the 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 season but, they were in the playoffs last year.

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05-03-2013, 09:11 AM
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There is no "jumping". They would have to buy a current AHL franchise. If the NHL expanded to 32 team the AHL would most likely grant 2 new AHL franchise licenses.

Expansion NHL teams have affiliated since day 1 with a minor league team Nashville with Milwaukee, Atlanta with Orlando.

A new AHL team would moist likely not be stocked with prospects from the parent NHL team but would go out and sign a bunch of players from the lower leagues or draft picks not signed by the NHL team that drafted them.
Can we please not open up this discussion again? A "new" AHL team cannot operate as an independent team that would they stock their lineup with free agents. Per the sticky thread about a team losing their NHL parent club and my direct email to the league

"Can a team not affiliated with an NHL parent club operate in the American Hockey League? In other words, could an independent team purchase an AHL franchise and operate without an NHL affiliation? Along the same lines, could a team that has an AHL franchise and loses its parent club (for example, if Washington and Hershey ended their affiliation), operate without a parent club?"

The answer I received was

"To answer your question, as part of the application for membership for an AHL franchise, a potential AHL owner must have evidence of an affiliation agreement in place.

The league's constitution, by-laws, regulations or policies do not necessarily prevent an existing franchise from operating independently should it lose its NHL affiliate, but considering (a) there are 30 National Hockey League teams who need an environment in which to develop their top prospects; (b) there is not a surplus of AHL franchises relative to the number of NHL franchises; (c) the additional costs that would be incurred if an AHL owner had to pay all of its players' salaries and other expenses; and (d) it would likely be difficult to ice a competitive product using a talent pool that doesn't include NHL-contracted players while still being guided by the AHL's development rule; I don't think it's likely we would see it happen."

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05-03-2013, 09:32 AM
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You could find 18-20 decent non contracted guy(especially for vets that are career minor leaguers)the real problem with it is the finances around operating costs and a roster. It could work in the short term I believe. A team like Hershey might be the exception and could do it long term.

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05-03-2013, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by BK Triple Threat View Post
You could find 18-20 decent non contracted guy(especially for vets that are career minor leaguers)the real problem with it is the finances around operating costs and a roster. It could work in the short term I believe. A team like Hershey might be the exception and could do it long term.
Since the veteran rule doesn't apply to goalies you could easily get 2 very good vet goalies, but it would be very difficult to field a competitive team with unsigned low level draft picks and free agents.

However, I will disagree with you that it could work in the short term. If anything I think a team like this would be better in the long term as said unsigned low level draft picks and free agents could develop chemistry over years of playing together that today's AHL teams lack given the roster turnover season after season. I liken this to some of the smaller NCAA Division I basketball teams that do well in the NCAA tournament because they can keep their players for 4 seasons rather than losing blue chip prospects to the NBA after 1 or 2 seasons.


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05-03-2013, 12:49 PM
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I would imagine the NHL wouldn't say one word about the AHL when and if they granted NHL expansion franchises.

Once they did, however, I would imagine that the new NHL franchise holders would quickly decide whether they wished to own their own NHL franchise, or just look around to affiliate with one owned by someone else. So, they might choose to purchase an expansion franchise from the AHL and own their own team. As mentioned before, there might be dual affiliate teams in the AHL for a while. Or, the NHL team that was replaced by the expansion NHL team's affiliation might decide to go purchase an expansion AHL franchise... etc etc.

At the same time, it is POSSIBLE that local ownership groups who may have been looking to enter the AHL might start talking with the new NHL teams about getting an affiliation, then taking that affiliation to the AHL for an AHL expansion franchise.

There are many potential paths. The details of who the NHL expansion owners would be and which AHL owners are in which situations, etc, would be the driving factors, as I see it.

Since I'm still skeptical that NHL expansion is on the table at all, my guess is that this will remain a theoretical discussion for quite some time.

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05-03-2013, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Tommy Hawk View Post
There is no "jumping". They would have to buy a current AHL franchise. If the NHL expanded to 32 team the AHL would most likely grant 2 new AHL franchise licenses.

Expansion NHL teams have affiliated since day 1 with a minor league team Nashville with Milwaukee, Atlanta with Orlando.

A new AHL team would moist likely not be stocked with prospects from the parent NHL team but would go out and sign a bunch of players from the lower leagues or draft picks not signed by the NHL team that drafted them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pelts35.com View Post
Can we please not open up this discussion again? A "new" AHL team cannot operate as an independent team that would they stock their lineup with free agents. Per the sticky thread about a team losing their NHL parent club and my direct email to the league

"Can a team not affiliated with an NHL parent club operate in the American Hockey League? In other words, could an independent team purchase an AHL franchise and operate without an NHL affiliation? Along the same lines, could a team that has an AHL franchise and loses its parent club (for example, if Washington and Hershey ended their affiliation), operate without a parent club?"

The answer I received was

"To answer your question, as part of the application for membership for an AHL franchise, a potential AHL owner must have evidence of an affiliation agreement in place.

The league's constitution, by-laws, regulations or policies do not necessarily prevent an existing franchise from operating independently should it lose its NHL affiliate, but considering (a) there are 30 National Hockey League teams who need an environment in which to develop their top prospects; (b) there is not a surplus of AHL franchises relative to the number of NHL franchises; (c) the additional costs that would be incurred if an AHL owner had to pay all of its players' salaries and other expenses; and (d) it would likely be difficult to ice a competitive product using a talent pool that doesn't include NHL-contracted players while still being guided by the AHL's development rule; I don't think it's likely we would see it happen."
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Originally Posted by pelts35.com View Post
Since the veteran rule doesn't apply to goalies you could easily get 2 very good vet goalies, but it would be very difficult to field a competitive team with unsigned low level draft picks and free agents.

However, I will disagree with you that it could work in the short term. If anything I think a team like this would be better in the long term as said unsigned low level draft picks and free agents could develop chemistry over years of playing together that today's AHL teams lack given the roster turnover season after season. I liken this to some of the smaller NCAA Division I basketball teams that do well in the NCAA tournament because they can keep their players for 4 seasons rather than losing blue chip prospects to the NBA after 1 or 2 seasons.
Where did I EVER mention the new franchises would be independent?? Fact - I DIDN'T!!!

I mentioned that the NHL team may not be able to provide ALL the players since they may not have that many initially to send to the AHL. If the NHL team had only 35 on their roster and kept 22, that means sending only 13 to a new AHL affiliate.

The next year the NHL team would probably be able to send more players. Economically speaking, the new NHL team could expect a lower affiliation fee to offset the increased cost to the new AHL team.

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05-05-2013, 06:42 AM
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Where did I EVER mention the new franchises would be independent?? Fact - I DIDN'T!!!

I mentioned that the NHL team may not be able to provide ALL the players since they may not have that many initially to send to the AHL. If the NHL team had only 35 on their roster and kept 22, that means sending only 13 to a new AHL affiliate.

The next year the NHL team would probably be able to send more players. Economically speaking, the new NHL team could expect a lower affiliation fee to offset the increased cost to the new AHL team.
I misunderstood what you were trying to say that the "new" ahl team wouldn't be fully stocked.

That said if the NHL does expand it could be that the new team would do a split affiliation for a season or 2.

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05-05-2013, 03:41 PM
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I imagine that they'll expand by the same amount the NHL expands by at the same time they expand, too.

Granted, the NHL will give a bit more head's up, as it takes a lot more legwork to start up an NHL franchise from scratch than an AHL one.

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05-09-2013, 02:37 AM
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Originally Posted by pelts35.com View Post
Since the veteran rule doesn't apply to goalies you could easily get 2 very good vet goalies, but it would be very difficult to field a competitive team with unsigned low level draft picks and free agents.

However, I will disagree with you that it could work in the short term. If anything I think a team like this would be better in the long term as said unsigned low level draft picks and free agents could develop chemistry over years of playing together that today's AHL teams lack given the roster turnover season after season. I liken this to some of the smaller NCAA Division I basketball teams that do well in the NCAA tournament because they can keep their players for 4 seasons rather than losing blue chip prospects to the NBA after 1 or 2 seasons.
Oh no doubt I agree long term as far as chemistry and what not went it could work. I meant finanancially. I think such a team would have a hard time lasting to the point where that chemistry and what not could even get a chance to kick in.

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05-09-2013, 07:44 AM
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Oh no doubt I agree long term as far as chemistry and what not went it could work. I meant finanancially. I think such a team would have a hard time lasting to the point where that chemistry and what not could even get a chance to kick in.
Might depend on where they did it. In Hershey or Chicago, places where attendance isn't a real issue, it could be done. You would have the added advantage of players becoming a bigger part of the community if they knew they'd be there longer, so it'd almost feed on itself.

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05-09-2013, 12:39 PM
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Might depend on where they did it. In Hershey or Chicago, places where attendance isn't a real issue, it could be done. You would have the added advantage of players becoming a bigger part of the community if they knew they'd be there longer, so it'd almost feed on itself.
True, this is one thing I liked about the old United Hockey League. That and the physical play. I get it the ECHL and AHL have young talent but all the roster turnovers during a season is a drag and theres a decent amount in the summer. hard for the fans to connect with any given player.

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07-12-2013, 08:22 PM
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Id say Atlanta with the loss of the thrashers. there isn't a significant nhl market there but a lot of hockey fans just lost their team. could be enough to support an ahl franchise

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