HoweYouDoin

Wolf Pack **ture and the Yard Goats

143 posts in this topic

I was going to put this on the post about the Wolf Pack's first game but I thought it would be better as it's own post. This isn't meant to be a dig at the Wolf Pack, more just an observation I've made this summer:

I went to a Wolf Pack game two years ago and I hated it. The atmosphere was terrible and there was nothing about the game that made me want to go back, and that's coming from someone who went to almost all UConn Hockey games.

Meanwhile, the Yard Goats are killing it with attendance and popularity. I mean, they have the entire area excited about the Goats and they're coming for Hartford's team, not to watch the Red Sox/Yankees/Mets farm teams. You see the 4 TV stations at games, the Courant is covering the games; They get a lot of media attention.

Yeah, you can say that it's the new thing in town that people want to check out, but there's a legitimate interest in the team itself. Going to a game is an event. People talk about going, ask if you've gone yet, how you liked it, etc. Maybe it's just me, but I see basically no coverage of the Wolf Pack, people don't talk about going to the Wolf Pack, it's not an event like going to DDP. Obviously people wanting to see the new stadium helps, but it's not like people in this town don't like hockey. I'm posting this on a forum about a team that hasn't existed in 20 years and UConn has plenty of success in the same building.

I think a new affiliation would be really good for a Hartford AHL team as well as a re-brand, something separate from the Whalers. Find something unique, build a brand that people want to come watch. There's no reason they shouldn't be generating as much buzz as the Ice Bus.

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Posted (edited)

I totally agree with you. There's no denying the facts. I do think the media should embrace the WP a little more but we all know it's not going to happen. That's why I'm all for a neutral affiliation.

Edited by HWP1997

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Sadly that doesn't necessarily mean we'll find anyone neutral willing to affiliate with Hartford

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This is the last season for MSG and the Wolf Puke in Hartford, we can't get rid of them soon enough.

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I just want Hartford to have AHL if not NHL that being said I honestly can't see the State letting MSG leave.  

 

Not because the state likes MSG, they are tired of the 1.5M aff fee but they don't have a replacement team.  They would never ask for Ice Sheet money and then the first year it's done cut 70% of their hockey dates.  It wouldn't be a good idea to remove 170k people from downtown just because the brand is unpopular.  Jobs, contracts, a lot of business is tied to the AHL. If there is some other team then there is no excuse but as of today there isn't an AHL replacement team to get. 

Spectacor also has a stipulation that they have to have a contract with an AHL team to run the XL.  

I would be happy with a new affiliate but I just don't see how it would work at least this season. As of this moment in time the Wolf Pack have no where to play next year. 

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It's true though. The Yard Goats have tailgaters man. TAILGATERS!  The colors, the look, the state of the art park...all if it smokes what the Pack does year in and out at the XL.  The last time the XL had any type of energy was when Baldwin came back and re-branded them as the CT Whale. Crowds weren't huge, but they were friggin' LOUD

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On ‎7‎/‎17‎/‎2017 at 1:49 PM, Whalevolution said:

I just want Hartford to have AHL if not NHL that being said I honestly can't see the State letting MSG leave.  

 

Not because the state likes MSG, they are tired of the 1.5M aff fee but they don't have a replacement team.  They would never ask for Ice Sheet money and then the first year it's done cut 70% of their hockey dates.  It wouldn't be a good idea to remove 170k people from downtown just because the brand is unpopular.  Jobs, contracts, a lot of business is tied to the AHL. If there is some other team then there is no excuse but as of today there isn't an AHL replacement team to get. 

Spectacor also has a stipulation that they have to have a contract with an AHL team to run the XL.  

I would be happy with a new affiliate but I just don't see how it would work at least this season. As of this moment in time the Wolf Pack have no where to play next year. 

That is the main sticking point with me. The teams that would move already have and we're out of options with AHL affiliates. Maybe if the team was owned by a local group or the city I'd be more optimistic with MSG leaving. The problem is that they own the team and that means if MSG leave then everything leaves. A new affiliate also really doesn't guarantee that anything will change. I thought it would with the brand change and the Baldwins coming back would help the situation but we all know how badly that went. I also think it the whole situation might have hurt a lot more than anyone thinks.

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People say a new affiliate would increase attendance. 

 

But on Sunday afternoons AHL games against the NFL

 

and October and early November Wed night games.  The attendance of those games will Really tell the difference, if there is any. 

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9 minutes ago, Whalevolution said:

and October and early November Wed night games.  The attendance of those games will Really tell the difference, if there is any. 

That's why I was so happy to see that both teams don't have that many of those games this year. I also like that they moved all the Sunday Pack games to 5pm. I think might help. Now we just have to see what times UConn gets. I was just looking at the schedule and I think there might be one or two double headers for the Pack and UConn.

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Let's face the facts here, wp drew well in there early years because people wanted the whalers back and the promise was always there from msg to help in any way they can, instead years went on and they started taking away for the history of the whalers little by little.. they had a whalers night and boom, the place was packed.. Baldwin, he got some of that excitement back and was on a good path to bring the NHL back, it wasn't neutral it was whaler history being brought back to life.. say all you want but the truth is there for who wants to see it.

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9 Months from now, the Wolf Puke will be just a distant memory, a mistake in the rear-view mirror, in the dustbin of sports history, this is their final season in Hartford, the arena is being renovated to NHL standards for the sole purpose of being a home to an NHL team, most likely the Carolina Hurricanes which will be playing here within 3 years.

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54 minutes ago, WhalerCentral said:

9 Months from now, the Wolf Puke will be just a distant memory, a mistake in the rear-view mirror, in the dustbin of sports history, this is their final season in Hartford...

Man, I hope you're right. 

Hope**lly, with the Yard Goats proving what was completely obvious to anyone 20 years ago, it'll wake up the powers-that-be to the fact that the Rangers needed to go even before the millennium changed.

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1 hour ago, WhalerCentral said:

9 Months from now, the Wolf Puke will be just a distant memory

And 9 months from now, the Failers still wont be here haha

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On ‎7‎/‎19‎/‎2017 at 6:27 PM, WhalerCentral said:

9 Months from now, the Wolf Puke will be just a distant memory, a mistake in the rear-view mirror, in the dustbin of sports history, this is their final season in Hartford, the arena is being renovated to NHL standards for the sole purpose of being a home to an NHL team, most likely the Carolina Hurricanes which will be playing here within 3 years.

It's being brought up to NHL standards because if they didn't they wouldn't have had ice at all this year. The ice makers are the same ones that have been in the building since the 70's. It has been falling apart for years. I heard that last year the machine died a few times and they almost had to postpone a few Pack and UConn games. Luckily they were able to fix it, and this was definitely the last year they were going to be able to use it. If they didn't replace it then UConn and the Wolf Pack would have had to play somewhere else this year. The arena is also only getting a partial renovation as of right now.

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At one point both XL Center Zambonis died and they had to borrow an extra one Travelers had for the WinterFest.  

 

They had to drive it down Trumbull and Asylum to get it to the XL.  Pretty embarr*****ing when your arena needs help from an outdoor rink. It's just luck and coincidence that the upgrades that are needed for the arena meet HE and NHL standards.  That's why the remodel is such a no brained the arena can make money even without the NHL. 

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15 minutes ago, Whalevolution said:

At one point both XL Center Zambonis died and they had to borrow an extra one Travelers had for the WinterFest.  

 

They had to drive it down Trumbull and Asylum to get it to the XL.  Pretty embarr*****ing when your arena needs help from an outdoor rink. It's just luck and coincidence that the upgrades that are needed for the arena meet HE and NHL standards.  That's why the remodel is such a no brained the arena can make money even without the NHL. 

I remember that. They were going to wait until the end of the season to buy the new Zambonis, but decided to buy them early right after that happened. Yes, the arena is upgrading to NHL standards but they were doing that before the $250 million plan was even "officially" approved. NHL standards also doesn't mean we're guaranteed a team because the ECHL and AHL use NHL standards, and so do a lot of other colleges and leagues.

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3 hours ago, TrueHartfordHockeyFan said:

I remember that. They were going to wait until the end of the season to buy the new Zambonis, but decided to buy them early right after that happened. Yes, the arena is upgrading to NHL standards but they were doing that before the $250 million plan was even "officially" approved. NHL standards also doesn't mean we're guaranteed a team because the ECHL and AHL use NHL standards, and so do a lot of other colleges and leagues.

Yup, I've stated that probably a million times doesn't mean we're getting a team but it does mean that there would be no way to get a team without it. 

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On 7/19/2017 at 7:36 PM, HWP1997 said:

And 9 months from now, the Failers still wont be here haha

And in 9 months, HWP will still be a jerk....:D

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So...where the **** would those two teams play if XL wasn't available. Springfield? Bridgeport wouldn't work with the WP but that's too far for UConn. Maybe they would work out a deal with the HE to play at Freitas?

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3 hours ago, HoweYouDoin said:

So...where the **** would those two teams play if XL wasn't available. Springfield? Bridgeport wouldn't work with the WP but that's too far for UConn. Maybe they would work out a deal with the HE to play at Freitas?

If the XL Center is closed down then the Wolf Pack would find a temporary home for a year, like in Albany or somewhere else. UConn would have to go back to Freitas and then would probably build their own arena. There has been rumors about them doing that over the years. Even the Courant has articles stating that. As of right now we don't have to worry about that, but the governor has threatened to close it down just because he felt like it.

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3 hours ago, TrueHartfordHockeyFan said:

If the XL Center is closed down then the Wolf Pack would find a temporary home for a year, like in Albany or somewhere else. UConn would have to go back to Freitas and then would probably build their own arena. There has been rumors about them doing that over the years. Even the Courant has articles stating that. As of right now we don't have to worry about that, but the governor has threatened to close it down just because he felt like it.

It's a lot more complicated than "because he feels like it".

there are working rotary phones at the XL Center. The Chillers are shot. Up until last year there was incredible life safety issues with the building. Regardless about how he felt the XL was doomed.  Malloy has plenty of issues with the people of Ct.  but nobody can say that he hasn't stepped up and saved Hartford Hockey more than once.  It's certainly nice to have a Governor that understands how popular the Whalers still are.  

UConn has talked about a home arena but it will be just an after thought since they won't be playing Hockey East games anywhere but the XL for the next 20 years.  At least that's the length of the contract they have pending with the XL. 

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8 hours ago, Whalevolution said:

UConn has talked about a home arena but it will be just an after thought since they won't be playing Hockey East games anywhere but the XL for the next 20 years.  At least that's the length of the contract they have pending with the XL. 

Wait, they haven't signed that contract yet? I thought they had to sign that a few years ago.

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No according to the CRDA they are in year 4 of a 5 year deal.

 

 

and you are right they haven't signed it yet but they don't really have any options at this point.

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My sources are staying consistent, they are holding to the fact that there are 9 months left in the Wolf Puke occupation of Hartford, and then the Puke will be kicked out, can't come soon enough.

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1 hour ago, WhalerCentral said:

My sources are staying consistent, they are holding to the fact that there are 9 months left in the Wolf Puke occupation of Hartford, and then the Puke will be kicked out, can't come soon enough.

Well, reporters are saying that the Pack are working out a deal with the CRDA to stay for at least two more years. Also, at the Town Hall Meeting the people from the Pack and Spectra are saying that the Pack will be in Hartford for at least a few more years, if not longer. So, it sounds like your sources are as good as Mark's.

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