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What makes a city "Hockey Heaven" to one NHL player

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04-25-2012, 11:45 AM
  #1
WhoIsJimBob
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What makes a city "Hockey Heaven" to one NHL player

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-pu...142811556.html

Quote:
"It's often mentioned that some markets, for various reasons ranging from weather, to market strength, to perceived lack of parks, can have an impact on where a player chooses to sign a free-agent contract. Prior to the season start, Winnipeg was considered a low-interest destination because of the winter. Do you think the enthusiasm shown from the Winnipeg fan base has changed perceptions about playing in the city?" Colin VanOsch

THE PLAYER:
As far as the perception of how "nice" a city is, I think that can absolutely have an effect on where free agents will look to sign. From a player's perspective, a lot of different factors will play into the perceived desirability of a team and city. It won't be the same for everyone, as different guys will have different priorities. Such factors might include the weather, the travel, the size of the city and its amenities, the strength of the team, the fan base, the role you think you might have on the team and wait for it the money!

The interesting thing to me is how people's perceptions of different markets can change over time. From the mid-90s to the mid-2000s, the Edmonton Oilers had a reputation as being a fun, exciting team to be a part of. Sure, they were a small-market team and the Edmonton winters are cold, but the fans were great and the players were treated like gold around town. There was also a feeling, as I said, that it was a special place to play with great traditions. The majority of the guys who played there seemed to really like it.

In 2006, the Oilers came within one game of winning the Stanley Cup. Instead of building momentum from the their Finals appearance, as Calgary had done in 2004, Edmonton took a huge PR hit when Chris Pronger asked out of town. All of a sudden no one wanted to go to Edmonton and the Oilers were soon forced to overpay players.

On the flip side you have the Chicago Blackhawks. I would say as late as 2007, Chicago was considered kind of a hockey wasteland. Players would go to the Blackhawks and were never heard from again. Everyone knew that Chicago was a great city but the team was bad, and nobody came to games because they hated the owner. Now, five years later, you would be hard-pressed to name a more desirable place to play than Chicago. Guys are taking less money for a chance to be a Blackhawk.

As is often times the case, perception becomes reality. When you are winning in Montreal, the fans are passionate and knowledgeable the best in the world. Lately, they just seem to be more overbearing than anything else.

If the Jets can achieve some success on the ice and the people of Winnipeg can sustain their enthusiasm, it will be interesting to see how quickly perceptions could change.
Like many have said, players will go to teams that win. It's not about throwing money around blindly.

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04-25-2012, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim Bob View Post
http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-pu...142811556.html



Like many have said, players will go to teams that win. It's not about throwing money around blindly.
I think it totally depends on the player.

-Some will follow the money, no matter where it's coming from.
-Some will prioritize going to a team that gives them a chance to contend and win.
-Some will care about geography (for example, preferring to be not too far from family in southern Ontario)
-Some (mostly players who are married with young kids) will consider places in terms of how good a place it is to raise a family.
-Some (mostly younger, single players) will prefer big or cosmopolitan cities with good nightlife, fine restaurants, and plenty of entertainment options.

Out of all those factors, I think only the last one is a permanent mark against Buffalo.

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04-25-2012, 12:54 PM
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Interesting feature. Never saw it before. Thanks for sharing.

Buffalo has so many strikes against it. The reputation (and reality) of the area; the lousy atmosphere in the building; the coach and how he treats players; the status quo despite winning very little of significance in 15 years.

Sounds like Buffalo is where Edmonton has been. It's a place you go to when the money is too much to resist.

Terry has so much work to do and hasn't really started. What a waste of 14 months.

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04-25-2012, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by puckish66 View Post
Interesting feature. Never saw it before. Thanks for sharing.

Buffalo has so many strikes against it. The reputation (and reality) of the area; the lousy atmosphere in the building; the coach and how he treats players; the status quo despite winning very little of significance in 15 years.

Sounds like Buffalo is where Edmonton has been. It's a place you go to when the money is too much to resist.

Terry has so much work to do and hasn't really started. What a waste of 14 months.
"Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is never try" - Homer Simpson

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04-25-2012, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by MayDay View Post
I think it totally depends on the player.

-Some will follow the money, no matter where it's coming from.
-Some will prioritize going to a team that gives them a chance to contend and win.
-Some will care about geography (for example, preferring to be not too far from family in southern Ontario)
-Some (mostly players who are married with young kids) will consider places in terms of how good a place it is to raise a family.
-Some (mostly younger, single players) will prefer big or cosmopolitan cities with good nightlife, fine restaurants, and plenty of entertainment options.

Out of all those factors, I think only the last one is a permanent mark against Buffalo.
Every single NHL city has suburbs and towns surrounding them that are nice places to raise a family, so this is a moot point. It seems that no professional athlete that comes here actually lives in the city, so I don't understand why this constantly gets brought up as a point in our favor.

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04-25-2012, 01:27 PM
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BuiltTagonTough
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Originally Posted by Beechsack View Post
"Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is never try" - Homer Simpson
Exactly.

Because a state of the art locker room renovation, showing a willingness to spend on talent (Ehrhoff), willingness to keep talent on the rosters and reward solid play (Myers, Stafford, Sekera), and show that you care for the players on the team (Pegula and Family flying out to discuss a move with Regehr) was just a complete and total waste of time. May as well have been BTG and Quinn at the helm because that did nothing to change public perception or player perception of the team.

Not to mention the additional spending on scouting and player development and amenities. Nope, a complete and total waste.

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04-25-2012, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by BuiltTagonTough View Post
Exactly.

Because a state of the art locker room renovation, showing a willingness to spend on talent (Ehrhoff), willingness to keep talent on the rosters and reward solid play (Myers, Stafford, Sekera), and show that you care for the players on the team (Pegula and Family flying out to discuss a move with Regehr) was just a complete and total waste of time. May as well have been BTG and Quinn at the helm because that did nothing to change public perception or player perception of the team.

Not to mention the additional spending on scouting and player development and amenities. Nope, a complete and total waste.
Very well said... Agree 100%




god I wish some Sabres fans were not Sabres fans

Their constant negative outlook on everything related to the city, the owners, the players is so freaking pathetic. Go root for another team... PLEASE!!

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04-25-2012, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by FoSotC View Post
Every single NHL city has suburbs and towns surrounding them that are nice places to raise a family, so this is a moot point.
I disagree. Not every place is an equally good place to raise a family.

The quality of schools varies a lot from state to state. Some cities have more and better parks than others. Etc.

And while every city has some nice suburbs around it, the cost of living to obtain the same quality of life can vary a lot. It costs a fortune to live in the nice suburbs of NYC or LA compared to what it costs to live in Clarence or Orchard Park.

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04-25-2012, 01:45 PM
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Pegula's working on things he can control. The arena, the atmosphere, the team itself, etc. The perception people have of the city is completely out of his control, so there's not much he can do about it.

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04-25-2012, 02:18 PM
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Originally Posted by puckish66 View Post
Interesting feature. Never saw it before. Thanks for sharing.

Buffalo has so many strikes against it. The reputation (and reality) of the area; the lousy atmosphere in the building; the coach and how he treats players; the status quo despite winning very little of significance in 15 years.

Sounds like Buffalo is where Edmonton has been. It's a place you go to when the money is too much to resist.

Terry has so much work to do and hasn't really started. What a waste of 14 months.
whats your solution? Last time it was fire doug allen...

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04-25-2012, 02:40 PM
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"I don't want to come to Buffalo. I'm too afraid of what Mike Harrington will say to me if I don't have a year end press conference "

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04-25-2012, 02:41 PM
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whats your solution? Last time it was fire doug allen...
We can keep Doug Allen, but I think he needs to stop pointing at everyone at the end of the anthem. It's clearly making the team insecure and effecting their play.

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04-25-2012, 02:48 PM
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We can keep Doug Allen, but I think he needs to stop pointing at everyone at the end of the anthem. It's clearly making the team insecure and effecting their play.
In larger markets, there would be reporters from 3 different outlets criticizing the finger point. Doug Allen is lucky!

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04-25-2012, 02:49 PM
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whats your solution? Last time it was fire doug allen...
Not the solution -- just one of the million things Ted Black likes to talk about that you need to do to win. Setting the tone at anthem time helps a bit. And making a change there certainly sends a message that you're serious about shaking things up. Holy cow, if you don't even have the heart to let Doug Allen go, it's no wonder the coach and GM will be here for life.

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04-25-2012, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by puckish66 View Post
Not the solution -- just one of the million things Ted Black likes to talk about that you need to do to win. Setting the tone at anthem time helps a bit. And making a change there certainly sends a message that you're serious about shaking things up. Holy cow, if you don't even have the heart to let Doug Allen go, it's no wonder the coach and GM will be here for life.
That's quite honestly the dumbest thing I've ever heard in my life.

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04-25-2012, 02:51 PM
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Oh, we're starting this again?

SWEEEEET!

/popcorn

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04-25-2012, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by puckish66 View Post
Not the solution -- just one of the million things Ted Black likes to talk about that you need to do to win. Setting the tone at anthem time helps a bit. And making a change there certainly sends a message that you're serious about shaking things up. Holy cow, if you don't even have the heart to let Doug Allen go, it's no wonder the coach and GM will be here for life.
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That's quite honestly the dumbest thing I've ever heard in my life.

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04-25-2012, 03:00 PM
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Folks let stay away from the personal please.

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04-25-2012, 03:00 PM
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I always thought the fire Doug Allen/Sabretooth stuff was just people joking around and being dumb. I never realized someone legitimately thought it would make any kind of improvement anywhere remotely close to being significant. Holy hell.

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04-25-2012, 03:03 PM
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I always thought the fire Doug Allen/Sabretooth stuff was just people joking around and being dumb. I never realized someone legitimately thought it would make any kind of improvement anywhere remotely close to being significant. Holy hell.
Nope. This was actually the point being but forth.

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04-25-2012, 03:03 PM
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"Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is never try" - Homer Simpson
It wasn't Terry's best. In fact, I bet at some point in the future when the franchise has really turned itself around that Terry will admit he didn't know what the hell he was doing in Year One.

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04-25-2012, 03:07 PM
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It wasn't Terry's best. In fact, I bet at some point in the future when the franchise has really turned itself around that Terry will admit he didn't know what the hell he was doing in Year One.
So you're willing to admit the franchise can and will be turned around with Terry as owner? So how does that translate into a waste of 14 months? If those 14 months don't even transpire, how does Terry every figure out what and what not to do as an owner?

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04-25-2012, 03:08 PM
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I always thought the fire Doug Allen/Sabretooth stuff was just people joking around and being dumb. I never realized someone legitimately thought it would make any kind of improvement anywhere remotely close to being significant. Holy hell.
I never said it would be significant. I've said it would be a tiny part of the puzzle and, more importantly, a symbolic move.

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04-25-2012, 03:10 PM
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So you're willing to admit the franchise can and will be turned around with Terry as owner? So how does that translate into a waste of 14 months? If those 14 months don't even transpire, how does Terry every figure out what and what not to do as an owner?
That's trying pretty hard to give Terry some credit!

Yes, I think Terry will figure things out eventually.

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04-25-2012, 03:10 PM
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It wasn't Terry's best. In fact, I bet at some point in the future when the franchise has really turned itself around that Terry will admit he didn't know what the hell he was doing in Year One.
Says you.

Nothing this guy does will satisfy you unless it involves a new head coach and GM. (And anthem singer.) You've made that point perfectly clear.

Terry Pegula could buy every NHL franchise and shut them down, guaranteeing a Cup victory, but you'd still moan if Ruff and Regier were still in place when he did it.

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