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ECHL Stockton on the block

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09-29-2014, 06:49 PM
  #1
LadyStanley
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ECHL Stockton on the block

ScottLinesburgh 2:25pm via Twitter Web Client BREAKING: @StocktonThunder for sale. Update coming to @Recordnet soon.

http://www.recordnet.com/article/201...NEWS/140929560
Owner interested to sell. Family, other business concerns the reason. Wants to find buyer who will keep franchise in Stockton.


Interesting. Have to wonder if the Sharks might be purchasing.

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09-29-2014, 06:59 PM
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Yup...if you listen closely you can hear the pieces falling into place.

The fact that the Thunder was "occupying" the Stockton market was the single biggest obstacle that I could see to San Jose relocating their Worcester franchise there. Assuming that San Jose buys the Thunder (at a premium would be my guess) it would place them in a similar position to LA with total control of their farm pipeline.

Now for some new speculation: Assuming the Thunder is purchased by San Jose...where do they place the ECHL franchise when the AHL franchise come to town? I find it hard to believe that they would buy an ECHL team just to mothball it a season later. So...where does it go? Fresno? Sacramento? Reno?

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09-29-2014, 07:09 PM
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I wouldn't be so sure he'd be selling it at a premium. Given that Bakersfield and Ontario may be jumping to the AHL, the travel costs would be going up if he were to keep it and play in the ECHL.

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09-29-2014, 07:10 PM
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Potentially swapping with Worcester.

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09-29-2014, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by hkymnky View Post
Yup...if you listen closely you can hear the pieces falling into place.

The fact that the Thunder was "occupying" the Stockton market was the single biggest obstacle that I could see to San Jose relocating their Worcester franchise there. Assuming that San Jose buys the Thunder (at a premium would be my guess) it would place them in a similar position to LA with total control of their farm pipeline.

Now for some new speculation: Assuming the Thunder is purchased by San Jose...where do they place the ECHL franchise when the AHL franchise come to town? I find it hard to believe that they would buy an ECHL team just to mothball it a season later. So...where does it go? Fresno? Sacramento? Reno?
I would think that the ECHL franchise would be sold, or it would move to one of the vacated Eastern cities - if the Western move opens up markets because of Anaheim and Phoenix's purchases of AHL teams to move (if that were to occur).

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09-29-2014, 07:12 PM
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Potentially swapping with Worcester.
Bingo.

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09-29-2014, 07:22 PM
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So Stockton's for sale, Bakersfield is owned by the Oilers, and Ontario is owned by the Kings. All three own their AHL teams. That's a pretty solid start to a division if Stockton sells to San Jose...

Any news of Anaheim or Phoenix buying an AHL franchise?

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09-29-2014, 07:32 PM
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I admit I'm not sold on the idea of a swap happening.

If the whole purpose of moving their AHL franchises west is to cut down on travel time and other logistical headaches, why would they turn around and recreate the same headache for their AHL team?

Think about it. If the western NHL teams successfully create a western AHL division then all of the games they play will primarily be in the west. Wouldn't they want their AA players close by so that their AHL team can call them up quickly without having to fly them in from Worcester or Manchester?

Then there's the issue of the fans. Worcester hasn't been drawing very well with an AHL team. I seriously doubt that fans will turn out in droves to see a lower level of hockey being played against teams from Elmira and Reading. What's more, taking away a market's AHL team is unlikely to create a lot of positive feelings towards the parent club, especially when its on the other side of the country.

My suspicion is that once LA and San Jose pull the trigger on moving their AHL teams you wont see either team making many inroads back into Manchester or Worcester. That doesn't mean that the ECHL wont end up there...but I think it will be under the banner of Boston or Montreal.

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09-29-2014, 07:41 PM
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I admit I'm not sold on the idea of a swap happening.

If the whole purpose of moving their AHL franchises west is to cut down on travel time and other logistical headaches, why would they turn around and recreate the same headache for their AHL team?

Think about it. If the western NHL teams successfully create a western AHL division then all of the games they play will primarily be in the west. Wouldn't they want their AA players close by so that their AHL team can call them up quickly without having to fly them in from Worcester or Manchester?

Then there's the issue of the fans. Worcester hasn't been drawing very well with an AHL team. I seriously doubt that fans will turn out in droves to see a lower level of hockey being played against teams from Elmira and Reading. What's more, taking away a market's AHL team is unlikely to create a lot of positive feelings towards the parent club, especially when its on the other side of the country.

My suspicion is that once LA and San Jose pull the trigger on moving their AHL teams you wont see either team making many inroads back into Manchester or Worcester. That doesn't mean that the ECHL wont end up there...but I think it will be under the banner of Boston or Montreal.
How many players do the Sharks assign to their ECHL affiliate? I don't think it's many. I don't think that's really a priority for them. I don't think we'll see a unified three-tier system in place anytime soon. They may even just sell the ECHL team.

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09-29-2014, 10:03 PM
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Potentially swapping with Worcester.
There is absolutely zero chance of a SJ affilated ECHL team going into Worcester. Support for a SJ AHL team isn't that great, and it's based off of lousy hockey ops. If they pull the AHL out of Worcester (which they probably will at some point), nobody in Worcester will want anything to do with anything San Jose. They'd draw more if they put the ECHL team in India..

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09-29-2014, 10:17 PM
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I wonder if Anaheim would swoop in and try to grab the market before San Jose, but they'd still have to either buy or persuade an AHL franchise to move there. Most likely San Jose will buy the Thunder.

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09-30-2014, 04:46 AM
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Bingo.

I find it hard to believe.

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09-30-2014, 04:48 AM
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There is absolutely zero chance of a SJ affilated ECHL team going into Worcester. Support for a SJ AHL team isn't that great, and it's based off of lousy hockey ops. If they pull the AHL out of Worcester (which they probably will at some point), nobody in Worcester will want anything to do with anything San Jose. They'd draw more if they put the ECHL team in India..
Exactly. I would find it hard to believe any ECHL team would thrive anywhere in New England.

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09-30-2014, 02:24 PM
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I wonder if Anaheim would swoop in and try to grab the market before San Jose, but they'd still have to either buy or persuade an AHL franchise to move there. Most likely San Jose will buy the Thunder.
I highly doubt it. The rumor I heard was Anaheim wants San Diego. That makes more sense for them because they don't own an AHL team so they'll already have to buy one (buying both an ECHL and AHL team makes this much more expensive), plus the San Diego market is big and close to Anaheim for crossover fans and call-ups.

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09-30-2014, 03:43 PM
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If Anaheim brings a Gulls team to the AHL, that would be awesome

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09-30-2014, 05:31 PM
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If Anaheim brings a Gulls team to the AHL, that would be awesome
It's all speculation at this point, based on articles from unnamed "sources". I hope it happens though.

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09-30-2014, 08:24 PM
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Potentially swapping with Worcester.
Never.

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10-01-2014, 12:56 AM
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I thought I read someone saying how San Diego's doesn't have any ice making capability anymore though. Or something being problematic with it. Maybe I read their statement wrong though.

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10-01-2014, 11:41 AM
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I thought I read someone saying how San Diego's doesn't have any ice making capability anymore though. Or something being problematic with it. Maybe I read their statement wrong though.
I was under the same impression, but I seem to recall someone (possibly Hans) setting me straight in one of the other posts.

From what I recall the big issue with San Diego is that the one hockey ready venue, the Valley View Casino Center, is managed by a group that had a falling out with the ECHL. However there doesn't appear to be any indication that the bad blood carries over to the AHL.

However, its my understanding that the VVCC is operated by AEG Facilities (a subsidiary of King's parent company AEG) which means that if the Ducks were to purchase an AHL team and place it in San Diego they'd ultimately be tenants of their crosstown rival.

At the same time, given the push that LA has been making to create a Western AHL division, its possible that Anaheim could get a sweet heart deal in San Diego if it helps the greater cause.

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10-01-2014, 01:32 PM
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However, its my understanding that the VVCC is operated by AEG Facilities (a subsidiary of King's parent company AEG) which means that if the Ducks were to purchase an AHL team and place it in San Diego they'd ultimately be tenants of their crosstown rival.
Isn't it Hans himself who says that, given the small number of arena management firms, this happens a lot?

Probably not a problem.

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10-01-2014, 01:36 PM
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Isn't it Hans himself who says that, given the small number of arena management firms, this happens a lot?

Probably not a problem.
AEG is huge. There aren't that many arena management firms out there, so it's a non-factor.

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10-01-2014, 03:50 PM
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Fair enough.

I admit there's a nice symmetry to having the Ducks resurrect the Gulls, and I really hope that the rumors are true. San Diego is a great city and I'd love have another excuse to visit.

Who knows...maybe if the ECHL-CHL "merger" rumors are true we could see the Mallards become Anaheim's AA affiliate.

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