Monday, May 07, 2007

Manitoba Tories promise to bring back the Jets...if they win

It's been a week of Canadian politicians using hockey as a platform for possible election. First the Doan saga, and now this:

Manitoba's provincial election campaign has turned its attention to hockey with the Conservatives promising to bring the NHL back to Winnipeg.

Standing alongside former Winnipeg Jet Thomas Steen, Tory Leader Hugh McFadyen said he'll work with the private sector to bring back the team, who left Manitoba a decade ago.

McFadyen won't say how much taxpayer money he'd be willing to put up, but says the government could follow Manitoba Hydro's example and raise money by issuing bonds.

He also says he would consider a special lottery to raise money as well as a players tax similar to one implemented in Alberta at one time.

The Tory leader says an NHL team would make Manitoba more attractive to young people and help stem the tide of university graduates who leave for Alberta.

From Sportsnet.

A pretty ballsy call from these guys, and a great idea. However, if these stats are any indication, Winnipeg and the metro area has only grown by 28,100 people since the Jets' departure in 1996 (now 706,700 total). However, Seattle and Kansas City, other future rumored destination for an NHL franchise have less people inhabiting them than Winnipeg.
One pro with the 'Peg is that there isn't as much competition from other big league sports franchises, and the new NHL cap system would ensure a competitive team.
Remember, Jets fans raised $13 million to try to save the Jets back then.
The current MTS center in Winnipeg that was built to replace the old Winnipeg Arena that the Jets played in only seats about 15,000 people. That won't cut it.

T Tags:



At May 7, 2007 at 8:12 p.m. , Anonymous matt said...

Although both Seattle & KC have less population in their "cities", their metro areas are much bigger.

Seattle Metro Area is 3 million
KC Metro Area is 2 million

Would the Jets have enough support from the business community in Winnipeg for sponsorship etc? Is there a business community in Winnipeg??

Why would they want to bring back a team that historically sucked???

At May 7, 2007 at 8:21 p.m. , Blogger Zanstorm said...

Well there you go. Thanks for the pop stats, Matt.

"Why would they want to bring back a team that historically sucked??? "

Well, Colorado and Atlanta historically sucked too!

At May 7, 2007 at 9:28 p.m. , Blogger Temujin said...

It's such a great concept... you could then put Detroit back in the East.

Of course, it would be "better" if a current team was relocated, then the number of teams would remain at 30. I'm sure Bettman has said in the past that he's not looking to expand into any new markets. Right now each division has five teams, and it's kinda hard to justify screwing up one divison (and scheduling) by having six teams in it.

Just a political ploy I figure... and one that is doomed to faliure, imo.

At May 7, 2007 at 11:23 p.m. , Blogger Zanstorm said...

Yeah, it all boils down to simple mathematics, huh.
Fucking politicians and their shallow promises.

At May 8, 2007 at 12:01 a.m. , Blogger James said...

What a goofball promise. It made me think that the Tories don't have a chance in hell of getting elected in Manitoba so they're just throwing up whatever to see if it'll stick!

If they are favoured, well, that's retarded.

At May 8, 2007 at 1:39 a.m. , Blogger Zanstorm said...

Well, the Jets were squeezed out not being able to afford their talent, who went to greener pastures. Winnipeg's lack of success hurt their revenue through ticket sales I'm sure. Winnipeg and a lot of other markets have a chance in this league now with a balancing act called the cap.
You never know...
More Canadian teams the merrier. Maybe in 5 years Winnipeg could get their wish.
The Winnipeg possiblity talks have been ongoing for quite some time now.

At May 8, 2007 at 9:38 a.m. , Blogger B_Washington said...

I don't think Winnepeg will ever get a team. Next on the list is K.C. They will get the next team because they have offered such a sweet deal with their new (and currently unoccupied) state-of-the art arena.

The only way the NHL passes that up is if a Basketball team moves in there first. Since Hockey has 2 teams that could be due to relocate very soon (Nashville and Atlanta) this seems unlikely.

After those expansions I think the NHL will start looking into seriously putting permanant teams in Europe. If they do look into it, they won't put a team into Winnepeg just long enough to send them away.


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Waiting For Stanley was created in June 2006.