Posted 18 February 2014 - 10:56 AM
I guess it's one of those things that a corporate guy looks at the demographics and sees a lot of money without really understanding how a fan's mindset works. North Jersey is densely populated and is one of the richest areas in the country, throw in a big brand new arena, and someone figures they'll go see a team that's their own. Unfortunately half if not more of your potential fanbase are already Ranger fans and their kids are going to be Ranger fans.
When you think about it, it's amazing that the Devils are still in NJ. Hockey is barely a major sport, yet there are more hockey teams in the metro area than baseball, football or basketball. (At one time you could even consider the Whalers to be part of the same market).
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I remember Walt MacPeek (used to cover hockey for the Star Ledger back in the 80s-early 90s) wrote a blurb about the Devils possibly moving to Milwaukee around '91 or so...never heard anything about that from anyone else though. And of course, we know about the whole Nashville thing (I'll always wonder how close that really was to possibly happening). The other rumor was that the Whalers would've moved to NJ to fill the void.
It's actually pretty laughable that the Scouts lasted all of two seasons in Kansas City. All the research that goes into finding expansion sites and selecting viable markets...all the hard work...who the hell thought KC was going to work out? I'm sorry, if a team bails after two seasons (and Kemper Arena was brand-spanking-new and modern at the time, so the building clearly wasn't the problem), then someone did some pretty sh!tty research.
Anyway, the hockey market was really already covered here, no one was screaming for a 4th team in an already crowded market, even if the uniforms had "NJ" on their chests, and yeah, NHL hockey is clearly #4 in this area...a lot of people flat-out don't give a sh!t about it. I've tried to recruit some of my friends, taken a few of them to games...they have fun while they're there, but they don't start really following it...once they leave the arena, they promptly go back to not caring about it. But they'll watch the Mets constantly no matter how bad they suck (in fairness I do the same, being a Met fan), they'll still follow the Knicks even though they've been bad most seasons as of late...and of course, the Jets and Giants will always have hardcore support.
Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976, 18 February 2014 - 10:56 AM.
THE NHL MUST LOVE THE DEVILS - from who else? A RANGER fan!
[Mark Messier]: A big, bald attention whore with a stupid Easter Island-lookin face. - from who else? DaneykoIsGod!
Even when Marty comes back maybe Larry should put Clemmensen to be on the goal during the shootouts.
Can the coach do that ? Switch the goalies 5 seconds to go in overtime? - Most priceless quote ever posted on a message board.
Martin Brodeur: THE MOST ALL-TIME WINS!, 12 straight seasons of 30+ wins, 3 Stanley Cups, 4 Vezina Trophies, and zero respect from too many so-called Devils "fans" who are either too young or too bandwagon to remember the much darker days of Sean Burke, Craig Billington, Bob Sauve, Alain Chevrier, and the talented but overwhelmed Chico Resch, among many others.
It's easy to support a great player when he's playing at his very best. It takes a true fan to support that same player during those rare moments and stretches when he's not. Babe Ruth went 0-4 some games, and sometimes Wayne Gretzky was held pointless. There may be such a thing as greatness, but no such thing as absolute perfection every single night.
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