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Cazzball

Heat Moving?

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Hello.

Sorry to intrude, but I have no idea where else to look.

Recently the Utica, NY newspaper said the AHL has looked at their facilities, to possibly move a team there. One of the more recent writings pegged the Heat as the team, and even said the Flames VP of Operations was in attendance, and toured the place. (http://www.uticaod.com/blogs/hockey/x877423726/Pro-Hockey-In-Mohawk-Valley-Utica-Flames)

Wondering what you guys may know.

I am familiar with the sweet deal the Flames have set up with the city, so I don't know why they would even think about moving.

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Who really knows for sure. The agreement with the Heat is a long one and barely begun.

Seems like a step back to me, unless the rumors you heard last season about the Canucks wanting to maybe bring their AHL affiliate to Abbotsford were true. That would make a tad more sense if that was the case.

It would definately be a step back in convenience for the Flames. They can get someone off the Heat and into Calgary with just an hours flying time. I can see it more like 1/2 day or most of the day from the east.

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Seems like a step back to me, unless the rumors you heard last season about the Canucks wanting to maybe bring their AHL affiliate to Abbotsford were true.

If the rumors are true, that is just one more good reason to leave the Heat in Abbotsford...

The rumored move would give the nucks a lot more convenience for callups at great cost to the Flames with the time it would take for them to do so by moving so much further away... It would also cater to the nuck fanbase being much closer to Vancouver...

So, keep them where they are... Aside from other reasons, if the Heats current location is a bit of a thorn in the nucks, so much the better... :)

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The NY twist is new on me.

Every summer it's the same story, move the 'Nucks farm team here, they'll sell out every night, blah, blah, blah. The agreement between the Flames / Heat and the City of Abbotsford is 10 years, this is year 4.

Seems to me the writer is dropping the most convenient name. And he can't even get the facts straight, I don't think he knows where Calgary is. CGY to Utica is 2340 miles, and CGY to ABB is 565 miles. Joker.

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Gotcha.

I know rumors have been circulating about the AHL and Utica courting eachother. the Flames have been the big team name, even as far as VP of Ops visiting the place. And UticaFlames.com was recently registered (just another rumor).

Anyways. Thanks for the input, seems like its just something circulating around here.

Good luck the rest of the way.

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UticaFlames.com was recently registered (just another rumor).

It was registered on Feb. 11th or 12th 2013 (time zone difference?)

http://wsdata.com/2013-02-11/uticaflames.com-domain-information.html

http://2013.netorginfo.com/20130212/ames.htm (4th from bottom of list)

This was probably done by a speculator responding to a rumor that registered it for next to nothing in order to sit on it and then hopefully sell it in the future...

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According to a WhoIs search, the person behind the domain is former NHL goalie Robert Esche, whom, if rumors are true, is one of the guys behind courting the AHL to the area.

I found it somewhat interesting that he didn't register UticaHeat.com, or UticaRangers.com (original rumors had the Whale moving, but that has since died down.)

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This amount of movement makes absolutely no sense at all. How many times has the farm moved in the past 5-10 years? Why on earth would they move from Abbotsford? Do the Flames not like the facilities, the closeness to the parent team, the crowd support? Absolutely boggles my mind.

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I would wait for a more credible source than this unknown blogger before I called it a done deal...

As has already been pointed out, the Heat have 6 more years to go with the deal already in place in Abbotsford...

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I would be all for it.

The amount of travel that the Heat have does two things:

1) it wears them down

2) it eliminates a large amount of practice time

I don't like the lack of fan support in Abby either - it's Nuck country and the locals aren't interested in the Flames' prospects. It isn't fair to the players.

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Even if you take this guy as blogging from good source,s this paragraph is very telling:

A lobbying firm in Albany is involved with those locally who will be managing the franchise. Two sources have informed us that public money is being pursed in conjunction with the return of professional hockey to Utica. There are a few phases of upgrades to the Aud planned. Skyboxes are in the plans to be added to the 54-year old arena, however it isn't clear at this time during what planning phase work will get under way.

So we have this lobby group involved.

And we have public funds being persued.

Okay seems to me there is still a long way to go let alone bringing the facilities up to snuff. The lobby group needs to get approval, and they still have aquire government funds for the arena.

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If this happens it is detrimental to the Flames.

Having our players so close to Calgary makes it very easy for us to call up players and have them flown over in time for morning practice.

If we move them then its going to be a lot more of a hassle to call up players. Not only that but you can guarantee that vancouver will be moving right into Abbotsford. Making it a hell of a lot easier for them to call up players. So not only does Calgary lose but our worst enemy, as far as current hockey rivalrys go, benefits from this. It's a lose/lose for Calgary

Not only that but by having our players in Abbotsford they get accustomed to the travel schedule that is very similar to the Flames. They definitely wont get that in New York.

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For what it's worth, it's not exactly "a random blogger".

It's a blog from the Utica newspaper, written by one of the local sports guys, who also writes for The Hockey News.

I'm not trying to start anything, or get anybody's credibility attacked. I simply brought the topic here, because I wanted to see if you guys (1,000x closer to the team that us in the Northeast), had heard anything. After seeing the deal with Abbotsford, and the heat, it baffles my mind they are trying to leave.

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Here is a response from the Flames via Randy Sportak's twitter feed

@SUNRandySportak: #Flames response to story out of Utica: "We have been approached by representatives in Utica concerning an opportunity for the AHL. "We understand they are building a case for the AHL to return there. We are under contract and committed to Abbotsford and have made no alternate commitments".

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Your link no longer works, I guess the deal really isn't done.

There are pros and cons to this, travel time not the least of the cons. But it is close to Calgary and a sweet deal for the organization.

It really should be paving the way for more teams to move West, there are plenty of cities here that could benefit from other alliances: Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Diego, Billings. Endless possibilities.

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I think they should build an arena in Airdrie and move the farm team there.

If they were going to relocate, that is an location that would make sense due to proximity, fan base, etc...

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http://www.calgaryherald.com/sports/hockey/calgary-flames/Trade+speculation+over+location+Calgary/8186149/story.html

 

Looks like the Heat are staying in Abby.  Good thing too, I just got a new jersey. :P

 

We realize the attenadnce isn't there, but it's nice to hear the Flames are committed to this arrangement.

 

I don't think that says that moving is out of the question.  Just that there is currently no agreement to move the Heat.  

 

I know that the Flames have a great arrangement there.  Both financially and geographically.  But it just doesn't make sense for anyone to keep the team there.  

 

Most of the fans would prefer a Canucks affiliate.  A Canucks affiliate would generate much more revenue for the arena and the city (who are paying out of pocket to keep a Flames team there).  And for the Flames why keep your team in hostile territory where they are developing playing games in an empty arena?

 

I think it is just a matter of time before they move.  But I could be wrong.  Ken King has been known to be stubborn. 

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Why would the flames possibly move?  They have a sweetheart deal.  From the Flames perspective, why do we care if the Nucks would sell more seats.  Very few AHL teams do well, the heat are close to home and are guaranteed to make money.  If I was King the only way I would move is if the Nucks, Abbotsford, or the new city promised to meet or beat the current $5million profit guarantee. After the 10 year agreement runs out they will be gone though I am sure.

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I think they should build an arena in Airdrie and move the farm team there.

 

Great idea. Does any city in North America have 3 hockey teams though (Flames, Heat, Hitmen)? That's a lot for one market. I know Toronto has several teams within the GTA (Leafs, Marlies, Battalion, Steelheads, Colts, etc.), but that's also 7 million population market. 

 

Why would the flames possibly move?  They have a sweetheart deal.  

 

The Canucks may buy out that deal in order to get their team closer. The financial benefits could still sit with the Flames/Heat.

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he Canucks may buy out that deal in order to get their team closer. The financial benefits could still sit with the Flames/Heat.

 

that is along the lines of what I meant by this:

 

If I was King the only way I would move is if the Nucks, Abbotsford, or the new city promised to meet or beat the current $5million profit guarantee.

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Why would the flames possibly move?  They have a sweetheart deal.  From the Flames perspective, why do we care if the Nucks would sell more seats.  Very few AHL teams do well, the heat are close to home and are guaranteed to make money.  If I was King the only way I would move is if the Nucks, Abbotsford, or the new city promised to meet or beat the current $5million profit guarantee. After the 10 year agreement runs out they will be gone though I am sure.

 

As both you and geo said I think there is a financial deal to be made.  I think the Flames want to be successful in their AHL club.  I also think they honestly care about the fans.  They are a organization that has consistently done the classy thing.  And keeping a Canucks team out of Abbotsford when it makes sense for the sponsors, city, arena, and fans isn't the type of thing they would do if there were other options.

 

I don't think they are going to eat a bunch of cash or put the Heat in jeopardy to do it.  But I am sure they are having conversations and are perceptive to finding a deal that works.   

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One location that is never mentioned is Calgary! I am not sure if there is any reason why the Heat can't replace the Hitmen. It would super convenient for call ups and they would be guaranteed lots of support. There is probably something glaringly obvious I am missing but it sounds perfect to me.

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