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Where are the "hockey towns" of the world?

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Old
02-12-2014, 05:36 PM
  #76
Urbanskog
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For Slovenia it has to be Jesenice, since 13/25 of the players in their Olympic roster come from there, despite having a population less than 14 000.

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03-12-2014, 11:03 AM
  #77
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Kind of hard to do this for Canada, pretty much every city is a hockey town.

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03-20-2014, 04:16 AM
  #78
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Originally Posted by Urbanskog View Post
For Slovenia it has to be Jesenice, since 13/25 of the players in their Olympic roster come from there, despite having a population less than 14 000.
The local steel mill was supporting hockey really generously, but those times are pretty much gone and so lately the hockey map has been diversifying itself too. I'd say that because of their Austrian top flight status Ljubljana has by far the best perspectives at the moment whilst Jesenice might continue to decline.

Someone brought up Nowy Targ for Poland, and although it's certainly an important part of the hockey landscape they as well have been struggling. This season Podhale could only participate in the first league as a "wild card" team after being relegated last season, but that only saw them make it two "relegations" in a row. Sanok and Tychy (Mariusz Czerkawski's team) have been strong lately, but one could also go for Sosnowiec because they house the national hockey academy and thus year after year the best talent in the country.

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03-22-2014, 08:17 PM
  #79
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United States:

Minneapolis (and surrounding towns), Boston (and surrounding towns), and Detriot (and surrounding towns) are the real hockey hotbeds, so I'd call them the Hockeytowns of the United States. If I were to pick one Hockeytown for the United States, though, it would be Warroad, Minnesota hands down.

Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Chicago support their NHL teams well, but college hockey and youth hockey isn't anywhere near as a popular in those areas as it is in the big 3, and they don't develop anywhere near the talent that the big 3 does, so I don't consider them true hockeytowns yet.

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03-26-2014, 09:08 PM
  #80
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^ I'd also add Buffalo / (+Upstate NY) to your holy trinity of American hockey hotbeds. Lots of good hockey players have come up from there and the Sabres are a well supported team.

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03-27-2014, 07:01 AM
  #81
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Depending on the definition of "hockey town", the hockey towns in Germany are either the towns (cities) with currently successful team and big attendance numbers like Berlin, Mannheim or Cologne, or smaller towns like Landshut, Rosenheim, Bad Tölz or Füssen, with long tradition where hockey is arguably the number one sport or at least up there with football (soccer).

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04-02-2014, 06:19 AM
  #82
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^ I'd also add Buffalo / (+Upstate NY) to your holy trinity of American hockey hotbeds. Lots of good hockey players have come up from there and the Sabres are a well supported team.
Also...full house on a Tuesday to watch the worst team in the league play the New Jersey devils. Nothing close to a star player in site and thousands of people on a waiting list for season tickets. The ratings they do for watching hockey (not just their own games mind you) speak for themselves.

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04-02-2014, 08:23 PM
  #83
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Also...full house on a Tuesday to watch the worst team in the league play the New Jersey devils. Nothing close to a star player in site and thousands of people on a waiting list for season tickets. The ratings they do for watching hockey (not just their own games mind you) speak for themselves.
It is their only pro team so that helps a bit.

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04-03-2014, 02:16 PM
  #84
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Originally Posted by Dakota Sioux View Post
It is their only pro team so that helps a bit.
They have Bills too.

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Old
05-18-2014, 08:11 AM
  #85
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Definitely the city of Bern and the canton of Bern as well. I mean look at Langnau which is not even a town, they play in the NLB and they draw 6,000+ per game. That's what I call a hockey town. Otherwise, there's no doubt hockey is the most popular sport in the country but in towns like Zurich or Geneva, we do not "breath hockey" due to the fact that those two cities are international and they're a lot of non-swiss citizens who doesn't know s*** about hockey.

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05-18-2014, 11:57 AM
  #86
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Originally Posted by doug88 View Post
Definitely the city of Bern and the canton of Bern as well. I mean look at Langnau which is not even a town, they play in the NLB and they draw 6,000+ per game. That's what I call a hockey town. Otherwise, there's no doubt hockey is the most popular sport in the country but in towns like Zurich or Geneva, we do not "breath hockey" due to the fact that those two cities are international and they're a lot of non-swiss citizens who doesn't know s*** about hockey.
So if I go to Swiss news sites, why is soccer ahead of hockey in the pecking order if hockey is no 1?

http://www.20min.ch/sport/
http://www.blick.ch/sport/
http://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/sport/

All have soccer ahead of hockey...

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05-18-2014, 12:14 PM
  #87
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Originally Posted by Mathers View Post
So if I go to Swiss news sites, why is soccer ahead of hockey in the pecking order if hockey is no 1?

http://www.20min.ch/sport/
http://www.blick.ch/sport/
http://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/sport/

All have soccer ahead of hockey...
That doesn't mean much but well

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05-18-2014, 05:23 PM
  #88
Rekin
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If you compare the Swiss attendances you'll notice that Basel is definitely a football territory, Bern and Zürich are shared and the rest of the country is mostly hockey.

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05-18-2014, 06:50 PM
  #89
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In Russia:

Chelyabinsk and Magnitogorsk. Think Toronto and Ottawa. Yaroslavl, Omsk, Ufa, Khabarovsk. Khabarovsk to me the most impressive because they know their team won't make the playoffs and still go to the games.
St. Petersburg -- up-and-coming hockey city.

Historically, also Voskresensk.

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Old
05-19-2014, 04:55 AM
  #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rekin View Post
If you compare the Swiss attendances you'll notice that Basel is definitely a football territory, Bern and Zürich are shared and the rest of the country is mostly hockey.
Ya obviously Basel's soccer team draws 28,000 per game but that's an exception. Also you can't have that much people at a hockey game and their hockey team doesn't even play in the NLA, so people are more interested in soccer in the Basel area but elsewhere in the country, hockey is more popular and it's also our national sport.

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05-19-2014, 04:32 PM
  #91
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Originally Posted by Rekin View Post
If you compare the Swiss attendances you'll notice that Basel is definitely a football territory, Bern and Zürich are shared and the rest of the country is mostly hockey.
dude, no. there is absolutely no doubt that football is our number 1 sport - in every conceivable way (attendance, media, amateurs etc)

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05-20-2014, 01:17 PM
  #92
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Originally Posted by starttomelt View Post
dude, no. there is absolutely no doubt that football is our number 1 sport - in every conceivable way (attendance, media, amateurs etc)
Strange then that you have fewer football clubs with good attendances than you have hockey teams, after all in hockey the arenas are smaller and there are a lot more games which should rather favour football.

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05-20-2014, 04:53 PM
  #93
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Football is still the No1 sport in Switzerland. Hockey is No2, but it's not even close. A lot of kids play football and even more watch, when the national team or the Champions League is on. Hockey is popular, but football is 10x bigger.

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05-20-2014, 11:38 PM
  #94
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Football is still the No1 sport in Switzerland. Hockey is No2, but it's not even close. A lot of kids play football and even more watch, when the national team or the Champions League is on. Hockey is popular, but football is 10x bigger.
If you take and directly compare all Swiss hockey and football clubs that have an average attendance of at least 1000 it looks like this:

27247 FC Basel
17879 BSC Young Boys
16347 SC Bern
13284 FC St. Gallen
11466 FC Luzern
9748 FC Zürich
9048 ZSC Lions
7772 Genève-Servette HC
7409 Grasshopper Club
6570 HC Fribourg Gottéron
6528 Lausanne HC
6277 FC Sion
6159 EV Zug
5631 HC Ambrì-Piotta
5627 Kloten Flyers
5345 FC Thun
5263 FC Aarau
5208 SCL Tigers
5040 HC Lugano
4782 HC Davos
4651 EHC Biel
4361 Rapperswil Jona Lakers
4176 Lausanne-Sport
3497 EHC Olten
3426 EHC Visp
3306 Servette FC
2336 SC Langenthal
2284 HC La Chaux de Fonds
2050 FC Winterthur
1725 FC Schaffhausen
1667 HC Ajoie
1641 FC Lugano
1562 FC Wil
1549 Neuchâtel Xamax
1417 HC Red Ice Martigny-Verbier
1381 EHC Basel Sharks
1164 FC Biel/Bienne

So granted, the few biggest clubs are mostly football, but otherwise hockey is better represented. And that although there are indeed a lot more games played in a hockey season and although the arena capacities limit the attendances a lot while in football sold out games are rather rare exceptions. That football would be 10 times bigger at least as a spectator sport, I can't see it.

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Old
05-22-2014, 04:25 AM
  #95
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Originally Posted by Rekin View Post
If you take and directly compare all Swiss hockey and football clubs that have an average attendance of at least 1000 it looks like this:

27247 FC Basel
17879 BSC Young Boys
16347 SC Bern
13284 FC St. Gallen
11466 FC Luzern
9748 FC Zürich
9048 ZSC Lions
7772 Genève-Servette HC
7409 Grasshopper Club
6570 HC Fribourg Gottéron
6528 Lausanne HC
6277 FC Sion
6159 EV Zug
5631 HC Ambrì-Piotta
5627 Kloten Flyers
5345 FC Thun
5263 FC Aarau
5208 SCL Tigers
5040 HC Lugano
4782 HC Davos
4651 EHC Biel
4361 Rapperswil Jona Lakers
4176 Lausanne-Sport
3497 EHC Olten
3426 EHC Visp
3306 Servette FC
2336 SC Langenthal
2284 HC La Chaux de Fonds
2050 FC Winterthur
1725 FC Schaffhausen
1667 HC Ajoie
1641 FC Lugano
1562 FC Wil
1549 Neuchâtel Xamax
1417 HC Red Ice Martigny-Verbier
1381 EHC Basel Sharks
1164 FC Biel/Bienne

So granted, the few biggest clubs are mostly football, but otherwise hockey is better represented. And that although there are indeed a lot more games played in a hockey season and although the arena capacities limit the attendances a lot while in football sold out games are rather rare exceptions. That football would be 10 times bigger at least as a spectator sport, I can't see it.
It's balanced because the NLB has better attendances than the 2nd tier football league, but on the other hand 5 football teams (half the top league) have better numbers than all hockey teams except SC Bern. And apart from Zurich, Geneva, Bern and Lausanne, who are all big enough to have teams in both sports, football is usually played in bigger cities (Basel, St Gallen, Luzern), while hockey is followed in smaller places (Zug, Davos...) with a tradition for that sport.

Anyway, even though game attendances are more balanced than I thought (thanks for pointing that out ), media coverage isnt't, and football also has a much bigger following on TV. I wouldn't say that it's 10 times bigger, but the situation is similar to Sweden or the Czech Republic: hockey is popular, but football is simply bigger.

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Old
05-24-2014, 06:24 AM
  #96
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I'd say, though perhaps my Romand perspective is biased, the ranking is like

Football National Team > Hockey NT and championship > Football championship.

At least here in Romandie, the NLA is miles ahead of the super league. Whether in Geneva or in Lausanne, the hockey team is way more important than the football team. I'm not even talking about Fribourg, which has no professional football team and one of the best hockey teams in the country.

Romandie is a barren wasteland for football and has a thriving hockey culture, and from what I see Ticino is the same (2 top league hockey teams, no top-league football team).

There are probably a lot more supporters of Benfica Lisbon than Lausanne-Sport in Lausanne, which I think touches on the most important reason for my ranking above: inclusiveness.

The football championship is Swiss-German territory. The hockey championship is there in all of Switzerland except Basel, but doesn't integrate immigrants half as well as football. The football Nati is for everyone, from De Sousa and Krasniqi to Cornu and Müller.

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05-24-2014, 09:13 AM
  #97
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Anyway, even though game attendances are more balanced than I thought (thanks for pointing that out ), media coverage isnt't, and football also has a much bigger following on TV. I wouldn't say that it's 10 times bigger, but the situation is similar to Sweden or the Czech Republic: hockey is popular, but football is simply bigger.
That is probably true. In CZ football attendence is little bit higher but generally hockey has very special position because it is historically sport in what we are most succesfull. So yep, football would be probably bigger if we were able to get regularly to worldchamps etc.

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05-24-2014, 09:32 AM
  #98
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If I should choose one city in CZ which cloud follows a definition of "hockey town" it is definetely Pardubice.

http://europeantrophy.com/news.php?news=68

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05-24-2014, 01:14 PM
  #99
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Originally Posted by totozenerd View Post
I'd say, though perhaps my Romand perspective is biased, the ranking is like

Football National Team > Hockey NT and championship > Football championship.

At least here in Romandie, the NLA is miles ahead of the super league. Whether in Geneva or in Lausanne, the hockey team is way more important than the football team. I'm not even talking about Fribourg, which has no professional football team and one of the best hockey teams in the country.

Romandie is a barren wasteland for football and has a thriving hockey culture, and from what I see Ticino is the same (2 top league hockey teams, no top-league football team).

There are probably a lot more supporters of Benfica Lisbon than Lausanne-Sport in Lausanne, which I think touches on the most important reason for my ranking above: inclusiveness.

The football championship is Swiss-German territory. The hockey championship is there in all of Switzerland except Basel, but doesn't integrate immigrants half as well as football. The football Nati is for everyone, from De Sousa and Krasniqi to Cornu and Müller.
What you're writing seems correct to me.
In german-speaking part of the country Super League>NLA. I'm not saying it's not popular, it's just not the No1 sport.

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05-26-2014, 04:55 AM
  #100
stv11
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Originally Posted by totozenerd View Post
I'd say, though perhaps my Romand perspective is biased, the ranking is like

Football National Team > Hockey NT and championship > Football championship.

At least here in Romandie, the NLA is miles ahead of the super league. Whether in Geneva or in Lausanne, the hockey team is way more important than the football team. I'm not even talking about Fribourg, which has no professional football team and one of the best hockey teams in the country.

Romandie is a barren wasteland for football and has a thriving hockey culture, and from what I see Ticino is the same (2 top league hockey teams, no top-league football team).

There are probably a lot more supporters of Benfica Lisbon than Lausanne-Sport in Lausanne, which I think touches on the most important reason for my ranking above: inclusiveness.

The football championship is Swiss-German territory. The hockey championship is there in all of Switzerland except Basel, but doesn't integrate immigrants half as well as football. The football Nati is for everyone, from De Sousa and Krasniqi to Cornu and Müller.
It's true that right now, the NLA might be more popular than the Super League in some part of the country. Lausanne is a bit of a special case as LHC as been more popular then LS for as long as I can remember (even during the 90's when LHC was stuck in the NLB and LS was a contender), but the situation in Geneva is a result of the current situation, and I have no doubt that football will be the biggest sport as soon as Servette FC manages to get back in the top half of the top league. Then you have to consider that some of the country's main cities are football only (Basel, St Gallen, Luzern), and that the Super League has a bigger TV coverage (live games on public TV during the whole season, but only during the playoffs for hockey).

Anyway, the NLA vs Super League debate is just a small part of the overall picture. As you mentionned, the football national team is a lot more popular, and immigration from Southern Europe also plays a role (Benfica and Juventus are probably the most supported sports team in Switzerland). The Champions' league and foreign leagues also have a huge following.

This means that even if the popularity of the NLA vs the Super League is debatable, overall football is bigger than hockey in Switzerland.

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