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…