A fond farewell to this blog

After many years of periodically writing a blog about hockey in Kansas City, I’ve decided to close this blog.

Years ago, the Kansas City Star started covering the proposed downtown arena and the “promise” of an NHL franchise. I knew, from the very beginning, claims that the downtwon arena would be the home of an NHL (or NBA) franchise were complete nonsense.

The history of how NHL franchises relocated didn’t match with how AEG & Kay Barnes were trying to attract a team. How Gary Bettman operates the NHL didn’t match with AEG/Kay Barnes’ claims. It all didn’t make any sense to me and Star was swallowing it hook, line and sinker. It was so frustrating. So, I started blogging about it.

Since that time, I’ve written several other posts as it related to hockey in KC:
-Mayor Sly James saying “they” told him not to pursue the Arizona Coyotes…never actually saying who “they” were. Then, spouting some nonsense about the Coyotes not being very good, as if that matters.
-Proving the dog and pony show of giving KCMO a giant revenue sharing check, like in Happy Gilmore, is silly when the Power & Light district costs the city $15M per year.
-I’ve advocated for UMKC to have an NCAA Division 1 hockey team. It’s obvious the basketball program is a failure. There is too much competition for NCAA Division 1 basketball in Kansas City. Even with UMKC’s win over Missouri this year, attendance and interest have not increased. I respect Stan Durwood’s vision to create “Kansas City’s team”, but Kansas City already has THREE teams (KU, KSU and Mizzou). Creating “Kansas City’s team” should have been something unique, like Division 1 ice hockey (you know, like Omaha did, quite successfully I might add).
Penn State recently started a Division 1 hockey team and the team/arena is already profitable.
The solution for mothballed Kemper is simple. UMKC could put a Division 1 hockey team in the arena, draw 3,000 – 5,000, maybe more, fans and Kemper could be used for ice sports when UMKC isn’t practicing. Yes, it would be expensive to maintain ice in a such a large building, but we’re only talking about September to March and the costs could be offset through charging the local youth hockey association for ice time.

-I once received a “Best of..” from the Pitch and for that I’m thankful. I’m surprised anyone even read this blog (the visits show no one really is) much less thought it was worth reading.

And, finally, the post I’m most proud of, being the first one to write publicly that Pepsi Ice Midwest was not returning as an ice rink when others in the local media were reprinting lies from the former owners (lies like “we’re the only privately-held ice rink in Kansas City” when the ice rink in Shawnee has ALWAYS been privately owned). I’m always fascinated when people say, “Well, it doesn’t seem like hockey will work in Kansas City. Look that rink in Overland Park closed.” People who say that (one of them was a politician who ran, unsuccessfully, for County Commissioner) are clueless. The ice rink in Shawnee has been open for nearly 20 years. The people who operated the rink in Overland Park were idiots and should have just sold it to someone who could operate a rink properly. When you hire a Rink Manager who doesn’t know how to drive a Zamboni, you don’t know what you are doing. They’re lack of business sense showed when their new venture in that same building failed within eight months.

Hockey in Kansas City is in a much better place than it’s been in many, many years.

The Missouri Mavericks are a strong minor league franchise in a stable, established league. Having a minor league hockey team in a stable, established league is something that, quite honestly, Kansas City has never had. The IHL was great, but not very stable. The CHL was constantly in thin ice. The UHL was a joke.

The Mavericks now have local ownership.

The youth hockey leagues will soon be under one umbrella, removing the divisive and toxic competition which was promoted and encouraged by the former owners of Ice Midwest.

Mr. Hunt has said he wants more ice rinks in Kansas City. The plan for that hasn’t been revealed, but it sounds like it will be soon.

The ice sheet at Burlington Creek offers pond hockey every night and it has been very popular.

The outdoor Pavilion at KC Ice Center in Shawnee is one of the best additions to the hockey community in Kansas City in a long, long time.

I sometimes get e-mails that ask, “What can be done to make hockey more popular in Kansas City?” It’s simple. Go to Mavericks games. Go ice skate at the local rinks. If you’ve always wanted to try hockey, try it.
If you’ve never played, try pond hockey. Line Creek has a beginner night on Tuesday nights and Independence has a beginner league on Friday nights.

With hockey in such a good place in Kansas City, it’s time to bid farewell. There will be no more posts to this blog. I’ll be closing the Twitter account. I’m sure I’ll pop up writing about hockey in Kansas City in some other form. But it won’t be “semi” anonymously (how can someone be a very obvious Buffalo Sabres fan in Kansas City and be “anonymous”? There are like 3 of us in town.)

Posted in NHL | 5 Comments

Seattle vs KC — who sees NHL’s potential

Let’s take a look at the difference between Kansas City and Seattle in the pursuit of an NHL franchise.

Seattle’s local newspaper – Bring an NHL team to town, even though we don’t have a building in which to play!

For all the focus on Hansen’s effort to bring the NBA to Seattle, the NHL is the better short-term bet. In a national popularity contest, hockey is neck-and-neck with men’s professional basketball, and the share of devoted fans has climbed consistently for decades, according to a Harris Poll report. In the last full NHL season, 15 teams had sellout crowds, compared to eight NBA teams.

Kansas City’s local newspaper – we really don’t need an NHL team because we have this building and it sort of has events in it and the arena gives the city one of those giant checks (like in Happy Gilmore), even though the entertainment district next to it drains $15M from the city because there isn’t enough foot traffic, but, hey, we leave dates open for concerts, like Pearl Jam and the Black Keys, even though those concerts seem to have not trouble scheduling dates, during the NHL season, in other arenas which do have NHL teams.

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Mavs Owner Lamar Hunt Jr. says “more ice”, but where?

The fact that Lamar Hunt Jr. specified that he thinks the Greater Kansas City area needs more ice facilities is a great thing for the Kansas City hockey community. He says he has a “vision” and his vision will be revealed in time.

Well, where do you think a future ice facility should be? Here’s a map. The three facilities with four (five in Winter) hockey sheets are pins on the map. I’ve pinned a few potential places that seem to fit.
Ice Rink growth

  • Repurpose Merriam K-Mart, plenty of parking, Menards seems to be backing out.
  • Wouldn’t an ice rink in Mission be better than a Wal-Mart?
  • The Kroenke/Lane 4 development at 91st – 93rd and Meltcalf seems to be the location with the a lot potential as Kroenke/Lane 4 are still developing their plan. Given the changing landscape of retail (more and more buying online) is a development centered around big box retail and some mix-use residential really sustainable in the future? Seems like a facility which would draw people to the development for something other than retail would be a good thing.
  • I’ve also highlighted the areas that one would think have strong demographics for youth hockey and are currently under served. My highlights are not a social commentary and I’ve probably left some areas out. They’re just my quick thoughts…please don’t read too much into it.

    I’m looking forward to Hunt’s next announcement. Exciting times for hockey in KC!

  • Posted in ECHL, Missouri Mavericks | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

    Lamar Hunt Jr, the Mavs and the most important thing he said

    As we now know, Lamar Hunt Jr. will be the owner of the Missouri Mavericks. It’s certainly interesting. However, ownership wasn’t our greatest need in Kansas City. We had good owners for our minor league hockey team.

    The one thing that Mr. Hunt has said, and he repeated it several times, is that “we need more sheets of ice in Kansas City.” He said it yesterday to Channel 41. He said it today in his press conference. He said it again to local sports talkers.

    This is, by far, the most important thing Hunt said and I’m encouraged that he continued to repeat it. It shows he means it.
    Hockey is not like other sports.
    You’ll always attract loyal hockey nuts, like me.
    You can attract new, adult hockey fans (usually because they’re close with a hockey nut)
    You can attract just those who are curious

    But, to grow and develop a fan base you have to get kids (and adults) to play. For those of us who have played hockey, we know. We know that once you play it, you’ll love it. I’ve known several parents who knew nothing about hockey, yet, their kids tried hockey because a friend was playing and now the whole family is a hockey family.

    Hunt may be drawing from what happened in Dallas. Yes, Norm Green ripped the North Stars away from Minneapolis and that was a bad thing. However, those that operated the Dallas Stars knew they had to have more sheets of ice in the city to grow the fan base. Well, they’ve done that. And, they’ve been so successful that the 2013 #4 overall pick in the NHL draft is FROM Dallas (Seth Jones). Even during the recent press conference to announce the five AHL teams in California, Ducks President Bob Murray said there were only two high school hockey teams in the area when the Ducks franchise began. The Ducks put a premium on growing the youth game and it worked. Now, Southern California, thanks to the Ducks and Kings, has more than 50 high school hockey teams (and players who are playing in the NHL — Emerson Etem, Matt Nieto). I’ve said this all along. Those who tried to promote KC as a potential NHL town did it backward. They should have been trying to attract someone to build rinks, then started talking NHL.

    What Mr. Hunt said is extremely encouraging for Kansas City hockey fans. Oh, and if anyone needs any help with WHERE these ice sheets should be, here’s a little help — current ice rinks and the giant gaping hole, which just happens to include the type of demographic youth hockey tries to attract…

    ScreenHunter_50 Feb. 06 13.47

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    Lamar Hunt Jr. to buy Missouri Mavericks – Thank you Adams brothers

    Tomorrow will be the announcement that Kansas City’s professional hockey team will change hands to the Hunt family — a family we know very, very well in Kansas City.

    What do I think of Hunt buying the Mavericks?

    I think the Adams brothers did an outstanding job with the Missouri Mavericks. I was a CHL skeptic. I thought it wasn’t very good hockey. I thought Kansas City was spoiled by having AAA hockey and the CHL wouldn’t do. Granted, a lot of time passed from the IHL to the Mavericks and all the pent up demand buoyed the Mavericks attendance.

    But, CHL hockey was better than I thought and the Adams’ and Mike Carper and Brent Thiessen did a great job. They put a high quality team on the ice (unlike the bozos who owned the Outlaws). They hired a terrific manager (Scott Hillman) and replaced him with another good one. They created a very good minor league hockey in-arena experience.

    The Adams’ won me over and any hockey fan in Kansas City owes a great deal of gratitude to the Adams’.

    That’s what I think of Lamar Hunt Jr. buying the team. Is this a “major announcement”? Not really. It’s an announcement. I know this. Mr. Hunt has very, very big shoes to fill. I don’t know anything about Lamar Hunt Jr and, shockingly, I don’t have any opinion.

    Do I think he’s going to grow hockey in Kansas City? Not any more than the Adams’, City of Independence, those that operate Community Ice and Bill From and Tom Tilley have already done.

    Two things Mr. Hunt could do:

    1. Make sure there is an amicable working relationship with KC Ice Center, Line Creek and the Independence Events Center. Get everyone on the same page to grow hockey (and figure skating) in Kansas City and avoid the petty squabbles that Lyn Shaw was so fond of.

    2. Have Loretto Properties either build an ice rink or renovate an existing facility to make it an ice rink. Laying out a map of Kansas City and where the ice rinks are, you can see a giant gaping hole from Shawnee Mission Parkway & Metcalf all the way South to, well, Pittsburg. You can’t grow the game without having places for people to play and kids to learn the game.

    Mr. Hunt can easily do #1

    My impression is that the new Mavericks owner is not someone with the chops to achieve #2. I’d like to be wrong. I don’t think I am…

    Posted in ECHL, Missouri Mavericks | Tagged , | 2 Comments

    More on the KC Star’s weak editorial that “No pro sports no big deal for the Sprint Center”

    Hey, Sprint Center had the Black Keys tonight! Good thing we don’t have an NHL team to squat on that date. Nashville, Tampa, Sunrise, FL, St. Louis, Raleigh, Dallas, Denver, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary and Winnipeg were able to squeeze the Black Keys in during the NHL season.  Hmm. Those arenas don’t seem to be “weighed down” by an NHL team.

    So when one of my less than a dozen Twitter followers asked Yael Abouhalkah if my response to their editorial was “worth investing”, Abouhalkah in a tweet says:

     

    ScreenHunter_47 Dec. 21 21.27

     

     

     

     

     

    I’m guessing he means not encouraging me. Well, gee, Yael, I don’t need your encouragement. I think I’ve proved to have some pretty accurate blog posts. Remember when I was the first one to report that Pepsi Ice Midwest wouldn’t return as an ice rink while the Star, the KCBJ and channel 5 were eating up lies the owners were feeding them? I’ve earned a small spot as a credible voice.

    I made him look silly a few years ago. Yael Abouhalkah doesn’t read blogs before he tweets about them.

    Now, he looks silly again. You see Yael tweeted this:ScreenHunter_48 Dec. 21 21.30

     

    I don’t need to compare the bottom line of the arenas because, well, it supports my point. Bridgestone Arena was my basis of the argument that an arena CAN have an NHL (or NBA) team and plenty of first run concerts, which refutes the Star’s claim that Sprint Center is aided by not having an NHL (or NBA) team.

    The bottom line of Bridgestone Arena in Nashville is this:
    It doesn’t make money. The City subsidizes it.

    Does that support the KCStar’s premise that the Sprint Center works just fine without an anchor tenant?

    No, actually it shows how incredibly lazy the Star is by saying that.

    You see, the city of Nashville is fine with subsidizing the arena. You know why? The more than 400,000 fans going to games provide foot traffic on Lower Broadway. Those fans spend money in the bars, restaurants and retail stores and generate tax revenue the city wouldn’t have otherwise — tax revenue Kansas City doesn’t have. More events = more sales tax. Nashville proves you can have great concerts AND an NHL team (or NBA).

    Sprint Center may give the city a check for $927,000 because the arena doesn’t have an anchor tenant. However, the city is missing out on millions and millions of dollars in sales tax revenue in and around the P&L District by not having the 40+ events an NHL or NBA team would provide.

    Think I’m just talking out my ass? Nope. I got it from The Tennessean, who seems to understand the the nuances of a downtown arena much better than the Star does. The arena itself may not make money, but it is a catalyst for huge sales tax revenue.

    Let me address the other part of his tweet.

    The Star said,

    But that effort has gone nowhere, partly because relatively few teams have moved in the last decade.”


    Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/opinion/editorials/article4645824.html#storylink=cpy

    A more accurate statement would have been “Few teams have moved in 40 years” Only 8 NHL and 7 NBA teams have moved since 2014. I’m no math wizard, but that seems like “few”.

    C’mon, just admit it. It was a poorly written editorial piece with very little research and a flimsy claim. KC Star editorial board, you can just say “we’ll do better next time.”

     

     

    And, I’m a little offended by the whole “not encouraging” thing. The Kansas City Star has been encouraging Clay Chastain since way before I joined the KC media in 1994. I know I’m more sane that Clay. Perhaps not by much, but I am. They give that nutjob lots of column inches and encouragement.

    (can you tell I’m on vacation…? lotsa downtime…)

    Posted in NHL | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

    Breaking down KC Star editorial – No pro sports no big deal for the Sprint Center

    Off the top, I want to make sure the intent of this post is clear. This is not a slam of Sprint Center. Sprint Center is a fine arena and was the catalyst for a downtown revival.

    This is a slam of the Kansas City Star and their incredibly lazy reporting. I find it fascinating that in the same paper, in basically the same section, you have two columns that are vastly different in their criticism of spin.

    In one column, you have Barbara Shelley calling out Kevin Yoder on his spin. Yoder inserted a rider into the Omnibus spending bill that helps big banks and no one else. Shelley called him out. His comment was just spin.

    Yet, in another column, you have the Kansas City Star regurgitating the same spin from Sprint Center — that the venue is more nimble without an anchor tenant and that is somehow attracting bigger, better concerts than it would with an anchor tenant.

    You know what? That’s nonsense. Does the Star even realize that NBA and NHL teams go on road trips, sometimes very long ones? For instance, the LA Kings were on the road from December 9 to December 16, plenty of time for an arena to host a three day event like Monster Jam.
    I’m going to set a timer right now and research concerts at Sprint Center and other venues in similar-sized markets. Be right back….

    Ok, so the timer thing didn’t work out because the dog needed to go out. But, it was less than 10 minutes for me to compile this list of Sprint Center events through 2015.
    College basketball
    Black Keys
    Trans-Siberian
    College basketball
    Globetrotters
    Winter Jam
    Sesame Street – 2 days
    Monster Jam – 3 days
    Manilow
    PBR – 2 days
    Arenacross – 2 days
    Nickelback
    Disney on Ice – 5 days
    Big XII – 4 days
    WWE
    Seger
    Maroon 5
    Charlie Wilson (no idea who that is)
    Fleetwood Mac
    Billy Joel
    The Who
    Nitro Circus
    Foo Fighters
    Taylor Swift – 2 days

    Can we agree that Nashville is a similar market to KC? Using Nielsen TV markets as a guide, Nashville is #29 and Kansas City is #31. Let’s look at non-NHL events coming to Bridgestone Arena. Timer on…

    Brantly Gilbert (again, no idea who that is)
    Marvel Universe – 3 days
    Justin Timberlake
    Kelly Clarkson
    Bassnector (who are these people, I’m getting old)
    Monster Jam – 2 days
    Eric Church
    Linkin Park
    Ringling Bros. – 3 days
    Jack White
    Arena Cross – 2 days
    Winter Jam
    Disney Live Jr.
    Charlie Wilson (I really should find out who this is, I thought it was a Tom Hanks movie)
    Jason Aldean
    WWE
    Maroon 5
    Chris Brown
    Fleetwood Mac
    Nickelback
    The Who
    Nitro Circus
    Charlie Daniels
    Taylor Swift – 2 days
    Foo Fighters

    What do we see as we compare these two?
    Sprint Center has 37 non NBA or NHL event days.
    Bridgestone arena has 30 non NHL event days. The major difference is the Big XII tournament and Sprint Center’s five days of Disney on Ice.

    The concerts pretty much match up. Billy Joel isn’t going to Nashville, but Sprint Center doesn’t have Kelly Clarkson or Charlie Daniels. (by the way, Black Keys already played Nashville).

    Nashville has an NHL team. Not only do they have the 26 remaining home games for the Predators, but Bridgestone Arena may have to prepare for at least three playoff games…could be more as the Predators look good this year. Yet, the arena is still attracting Arenacross, WWE, Maroon 5, Fleetwood Mac, Foo Fighters and Justin Timberlake (who was in KC earlier this year). The Predators are averaging 16,800 this season, which means they are going to have 436,800 bodies through their turnstiles through April of 2015. You think the bars and restaurants around Bridgestone Arena appreciate the nearly half a million people that will go to NHL games? You think that number of foot traffic could offset some if not most of the losses at P&L?

    Timer off. In 14 minutes and 23 seconds, I’ve completely refuted the following line in the Star’s editorial:
    For instance, it would make little sense for Sprint Center officials to reduce their ability to get first-class concerts by setting aside 40 or so dates a season for a National Basketball Association team.

    This claim in the editorial is accurate:
    In turn, that club could demand to take some or all of the fees and concession revenue during games at the center.

    This has always been true. Yet, when Mario Lemieux was flirting with KC and AEG was waving a favorable lease under his nose, the KC Star was all-in on how great a deal it would be for KC.

    Let’s break down these little nuggets:
    At the time, some Kansas City sports fans hoped that the new arena would help the city woo a pro basketball or hockey team.

    Hmmm…not how I remember it. AEG told Kansas City sports fans they would find an owner who would bring an NHL or NBA team to Kansas City. Former Mayor Kay Barnes said she had 100% faith in Tim Lieweke. Mayor James said “THEY told him the timing wasn’t right”, whoever THEY is.

    But that effort has gone nowhere, partly because relatively few teams have moved in the last decade.

    This line is comical. Absolutely comical. Relatively few teams have moved IN THE LAST 40 YEARS!!! Just to show you how incredibly lazy this comment from the Kansas City Star is, I’ll give you a quick recap:
    Eight NHL franchises have moved in 40 years.
    Seven NBA franchises have moved in 40 years (if you include NJ Nets to Brooklyn).
    When NHL franchises moved, three of the eight were a result of old guard NHL owners allowing new owners to move out of WHA markets (Quebec, Winnipeg, Hartford) — markets the old guard NHL owners never wanted in the first place. Plus, the Canadian dollar was terrible at the time and there were no Canadian owners that wanted to keep the franchises in aging arenas. Hartford wouldn’t build Peter Karamanos a new arena. Since Sprint Center opened in 2007, Atlanta moved to Winnipeg because Winnipeg had billionaire David Thompson ready to purchase a team. Clay Bennett stole the Sonics from Seattle. Only once in 39 years, ONCE!, has a sitting NHL owner moved his franchise to another market. Norm Greed (er, Green) moved the North Stars to Dallas.

    The high cost of a successful bid also factors heavily in the process.

    Huh? I don’t know what this line means. I think it’s a hedge against Las Vegas (or Seattle) and Quebec City getting NHL expansion teams. Markets that, you know, already have owners.

    Can we get someone good, like Kevin Collison, to report on Sprint Center? Oh wait…

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    KC Star continues to shill for AEG/Sprint Center

    They did it again.
    The Kansas City Star continues their irresponsible reporting about Sprint Center. It’s like these editorials were written by first year journalism students.

    In their editorial section, the Star says the investment in Sprint Center continues to be a good deal because AEG returned $927,144 to the city. On the surface, this does seem like a good deal. But, you really have to dig deeper to evaluate whether that $927,144 is really something to tout.

    The city continues to pour money into the Power & Light District. I don’t know the latest figures and I’m not a reporter, so I’m not going to dig around to find out. However, you simply cannot say Sprint Center’s profit sharing check is a great deal for the city if P&L continues to be a drag on city coffers. To my chagrin, even the Pitch has failed to add AEG profit sharing contribution, but then subtract how much money P&L loses.

    SPRINT CENTER AND THE POWER & LIGHT DISTRICT ARE TIED TOGETHER

    Forever and ever and ever, they are tied together. Let’s break this down.
    For instance, it would make little sense for Sprint Center officials to reduce their ability to get first-class concerts by setting aside 40 or so dates a season for a National Basketball Association team. In turn, that club could demand to take some or all of the fees and concession revenue during games at the center.

    Yes, I agree with this. A team would demand fees. I’ve agreed with this since 2002 when I started writing about it. Back then, the KC Star was writing about Sprint Center as if an NBA or NHL coming to the arena was inevitable. I wrote that the lease agreement offered by AEG wouldn’t be any better than the agreement the team currently had so why would the team move?

    What the Star fails to mention is that an NBA or NHL team would drive 580,000+ butts to downtown over the course of a season. Granted, a few concerts wouldn’t come as a result. Subtract those four or five concerts Sprint Center wouldn’t have and you still have half a million more people going through the arena. Oh, AND WALKING IN, AROUND, NEAR AND THROUGH P&L! As a result, maybe P&L wouldn’t be a drag on the city.

    If there was any year P&L would be profitable, it would be this one, right? Big XII tourney, Royals long playoff run & Graham Zusi and Matt Besler playing in the World Cup. Imagine all that churning through P&L, plus an NBA or NHL team’s 14,000 per game. Oh, and by the way, you can still have concerts. It happens in Nashville and Columbus and Raleigh other medium-sized cities like ours.

    Look, I agree that Sprint Center was a good investment. It started a chain reaction that has completely revitalized downtown Kansas City. We’ve had in the last year, or will have in the next year, some great concerts, like Foo Fighters, Pearl Jam, Paul McCartney, Dave Matthews and Maroon 5. I suppose there are 10s of people who are excited about Nickelback, too.

    But, to report on Sprint Center’s profit sharing check without reporting on P&L’s net loss is just irresponsible.

    Oh, and nevermind the fact AEG is working hard to get an NHL team in Vegas…even though they already “promised” us one…

    Posted in NHL | Tagged | 2 Comments

    NHL Board of Governors meeting – Expansion talk

    The NHL Board of Governors meets this week in Boca Raton. There has been a lot of talk about the NHL expanding by two teams.

    And, why not? League revenues are up. New TV contracts are inked and funnel a lot of greenbacks (and loonies) the NHL’s way. Of course, not as many loonies as the Canadian dollar is down to about $.88 American.

    Anyway…all this talk and is Kansas City mentioned? Nope.

    Why? Same reason as last year, and two years ago and, heck, before the first pane of glass was squeegeed at Sprint Center. THERE IS NO OWNER FOR AN NHL TEAM IN KANSAS CITY.

    Though, I find it interesting the Board of Governors is meeting in Boca. If the BOG, their lackeys, PR flaks and the media that is covering the BOG meetings all decided to go to a Panthers game, would it double the Panthers attendance?

    Posted in NHL | 1 Comment

    Kansas City — Center of Sports World — for a week

    I don’t like it when some outsider says, “Kansas City can’t support an NHL team”. You see, I don’t think that’s true.

    Here is a 10-day snapshot of sports in Kansas City. Remember, we have about 1.8 – 2.1 million people — about half the size of St. Louis and less than about 1/3 the size of Dallas/Fort Worth. Each one of our major sports venues was used and, nearly, full.

    Friday, September 26 — MLS Soccer — sellout crowd of 19,500. Oh, and by the way, the team is the defending champions.
    Saturday, September 27 – NHL preseason hockey game, nearly full capacity of 13,000 (upper end seats were curtained)
    Monday, September 29 — NFL Monday Night football – sellout crowd 78,000+. Set an, admittedly arbitrary, record for loudest crowd noise.
    Tuesday, September 30 – MLB AL Wildcard game — sellout crowd of 45,000+.
    Saturday/Sunday — October 4 & 5 — NASCAR Weekend — Sunday will be a 80,000+ sellout
    Sunday, October 5 — AL Division Series Game 3

    I mention all this without mentioning that during this period of time, all three NCAA FBS football teams played home games within a 21/2 hour drive. Even Nebraska, just 210 miles from Kansas City, had a home game during this time.

    You see this is what bugs me about criticism of Kansas City. We’ll support an NHL team if one ever comes here.

    But, if one never comes here, Kansas City is an outstanding sports market. What other markets have NFL, MLB, MLS, NASCAR (our second race) and NCAA Division 1 sports, in the same market, IN THE SAME WEEK. Less than 10. And, those places are much, much larger than Kansas City.

    I think if an NHL team came to Kansas City, it would have to be a winner. But, how does that make Kansas City different than any other medium-sized NHL market? The Blues certainly didn’t have good attendance during the Mike Kitchen era.

    Regardless of whether the NHL (or NBA) comes here, Kansas City is a great sports market.

    Posted in NHL | 3 Comments