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What about Stratford for an OHL team?

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12-20-2006, 01:47 PM
  #1
derbyfan
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What about Stratford for an OHL team?

Forget Burlington, move the IceDogs to Stratford.
Some may see it as crazy, but why not? I certainly think it would be better than any GTA location...

1) It's in the heart of Southwestern Ontario, so travel wouldn't be any worse.
2) It would create a natural rivalry with Kitchener and London.
3) Yes, it's a small city (30,000). But it's still bigger than Owen Sound.
4) Most importantly, Stratford has long tradition of supporting junior hockey. The Stratford Cullitons are a perennial Jr. B powerhouse, and draw 1200-1500 a game (according to the team's website). They also claim to have 1,000 season ticket holders. For JR. B hockey!

I know this likely will never happen, that the OHL is now big business and wants to look at bigger cities. But does anyone else think this would be an intriguing choice?

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12-20-2006, 03:27 PM
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That's not a bad idea. There are some really good players in the OHL from around the area, such as Sudbury Wolves forward Devin DiDiomete, and it seems like a nice hockey community. I was thinking that it would be a nice place to have a franchise.

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12-20-2006, 04:53 PM
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Spitfire11
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It's a nice town but I don't think it could support a team. Many of it's homeowners only live there during the warm months and the Stratford Festival which doesn't coincide with the OHL season. It's also sandwiched between cities that have OHL teams like London and Guelph so there isn't much area it could draw fans from like Owen Sound does. It would be nice, but I don't think it's a realistic possibility.

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12-21-2006, 08:24 AM
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derbyfan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spitfire11 View Post
It's a nice town but I don't think it could support a team. Many of it's homeowners only live there during the warm months and the Stratford Festival which doesn't coincide with the OHL season. It's also sandwiched between cities that have OHL teams like London and Guelph so there isn't much area it could draw fans from like Owen Sound does. It would be nice, but I don't think it's a realistic possibility.
I fully admit this is a highly unlikely idea. I just get fed up with seeing OHL teams go to GTA markets that don't care about the product (and I'm from the GTA).

I do think it's phenomenal that Stratford averages such high attendance for Jr. B hockey, and wonder how well it would transfer to the OHL...

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12-21-2006, 11:07 PM
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JrHockeyFan
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Well

That kind of move might kill a Jr B franchise there

I think that Stratford is a bit small and is too close to other established teams to draw area fans.

If Stratford is considered okay, is it time to give Brantford another shot? Woodstock? St Thomas? Not sure that any of those places could support a team.

St Kitts and NF also had teams. Are they ready again?

Perhaps the thing that is being overlooked is that maybe there are too many teams if it is this difficult to come up with a new place to relocate a franchise in Ontario.

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12-23-2006, 12:46 AM
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same with Cambridge i noticed and would fill in alot of the same things but the Galt arena gardens is bigger than the arena in stratford i believe, if the OHL ever planned on expanding more, which probably won't happen as talent is already spread out as it is, i could see them getting consideration if they could get a bit bigger arena..

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01-14-2007, 08:30 AM
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screw that, put them in New Hamburg, woooo. new rink and everything.

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01-17-2007, 11:27 AM
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Owen Sound isn't quite a fair comparison...it draws from all of Grey/Bruce County, 150,000 people as it's the regional centre...

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