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Bruce, Caroline

My Views on Bringing the NHL Back to Winnipeg

I'm not sure which is ultimately worse: having unwanted guests or being forced to be somewhere against your will. We can certainly all relate to the former, but Winnipeg seems to be intent on inflicting the latter on the NHL. They don't want to be here, they'd sooner set up a Libyan franchise than set up here in Winnipeg, but the priorities of the average Winnipegger seem to run something like: Bring the NHL back to Winnipeg, fix the roads, feed the hungry. Bringing the NHL back if firmly at the top of the list of earth-shatteringly important must-dos to ensure the survival of our city.

The media is loving it. This frustrates me, because typically, I love the media. But for a sports caster in this city, this whole NHL issue is a gold mine.

So why are we so intent on bringing back the NHL? We didn't' seem to much care the first time, after we got used to it and before it was endangered, so why should we expect that to change? Prestige? Maybe. In the list of Canadian cities whose teams never win the Stanley Cup, I supposed it might be kind of cool to be counted. Certainly, any prestige gained will be limited pretty much to our own backyard. How many Americans care? How many Canadians with power really care? Would they be upset in Libya if we got our franchise and they didn't?

I think Winnipeggers need to just once and for all move the heck on. Gain this city a reputation for having the most-supported AHL team in the league. Once we do that week in and week out. maybe the NHL will ask us to accept a franchiese instead of laughing at Winnipeggers as they lie prostrate, begging and pleading for Uncle Gary to notice.

If we ever do get a team, may I suggest we call it the Winnipeg Last Resorts, because that's what we'd be, the NHL's very last resort.


Sports appears to have the same effect on some people's brains that grandparenthood does. Reason and rationality are put in suspended animation. This also causes appallingly short memories. I'm not an NHL fan by any stretch, and I remember the Jets weren't exactly one of the storied NHL franchises during their existence. And, as you say, what happens when/if he franchise materializes? Tampa, Florida whined, sniveled, kicked, screamed, etc., for over 10 years because they didn't have a baseball team. They eventually did get one, and within two or three years people stopped going. Even now, with a competitive team, they don't draw well. I'm as big of a sports fan as there is, but I don't think getting a franchise of any kind is worth a city mortgaging up to their necks.