The Winnipeg News!!
The rumours have been swirling for months regarding the Thrashers impeding move. As usual, Sockey On Hockey brings you the scoop on all of the inside details of the situation. Members of the Sockey On Hockey staff have been in contact with members of potential ownership groups for the last two years. For almost a year now, there have been reports that a group based in Winnipeg is poised to make an offer for the Atlanta hockey team. Over the past 11 years, the Thrashers have gotten used to playing in a half-empty building. This, and the fact they have never had a successful playoff run are the two things they have in common with the current Winnipeg hockey team, the Manitoba Moose.
In our discussions with these prospective owners, they have repeatedly listed out the reasons why the rebirth of the Winnipeg franchise will be a success for the city of Winnipeg and for the NHL. They’ve pointed out that Winnipeg is the 7th largest city in Canada, and with it’s 694,000 citizens, it dwarfs Atlanta’s 540,000 inhabitants.
While Atlanta can boast having the world’s busiest airport, there are also several major national and international companies headquartered there, including three Fortune 100 companies: The Coca-Cola Company, Home Depot, and United Parcel Service. Other headquarters for some major companies in Atlanta include AirTran Airways, Arby's, AT&T, Chick-fil-A, Delta, Earthlink, Equifax, Gentiva Health Services, Georgia-Pacific, Oxford Industries, RaceTrac Petroleum, Southern Company, SunTrust Banks, and Waffle House. With all this going for them, the local ownership group has been unable to entice any of them into a sponsorship agreement with the Thrashers, Hawks, or Philips Arena.
The Winnipeg investment group already have an NHL quality arena in place that holds over 15,000 fans and the potential owners from Winnipeg have already crafted a solid list of corporate sponsorships agreements with Winnipeg based companies Manitoba Telecom Services, Great-West Life Assurance, Boeing Canada Technology, and Bristol Aerospace.Unfortunately for the all of the diehard NHL fans of Winnipeg, this isn’t enough.
The fact of the matter is that the NHL has NO INTEREST in moving a team from a high profile city like Atlanta to a frozen shit pond located so far in the in the middle of a barren wasteland that you measure distance in hours. The typical Manitoban is not only fat and ugly, but plans their financial futures around their bingo winnings, and isn’t going to pony up the cash for season tickets and still be able to afford the venison, beer, and saskatoons being sold at the concession stands. Besides, the prospect of having Fred Penner doing NHL advertisements makes Gary Bettman throw-up in his mouth.
So here it is you mullet-headed, pronghorn poaching, snow farmers, you had your chance with the Jets and you pissed it away. If you’re looking forward to seeing NHL hockey, it’s going to involve an 8 hour drive to Minneapolis to see the Wild! Otherwise, head down to Portage & Main and spend some of that money you’ve been saving for season tickets and help out the local economy. Pay to watch the hookers urinate in the storm drains!
STUFF A SOCK IN IT WINNIPEG!