Sabres May Fold Without Gov't Bailout

Sabres May Fold Without Gov’t Bailout

http://espn.go.com/nhl/news/2002/1220/1480087.html

ESPN.com is reporting that the troubled Buffalo Sabres franchise may fold or have to move from Buffalo if local and stats gov’ts don’t agree to fork over millions.

I am sick and tired of millionaires crying poor-mouth. If you can’t afford to buy the damn team and pay for it out of your own pocket then shut up and go home.

I realize that we Americans are so stupid that we allow this kind of subsidizing the rich but it has to stop. If the candidates for buying the team want it so bad they should not be asking for handouts.

If they need the taxpayers to cough up dough, it means they can’t afford a sports franchise and should quit. This goes for new arenas too!

What do you think?


43 Responses to Sabres May Fold Without Gov't Bailout

  1. mikster says:

    MOVE EM TO CANADA!!!! Talk about ticket sales and a great new attitude.

  2. aaron says:

    Most Canadian franchises are towards the bottom of ticket sales. TO and Montreal are the only two who can really economically support a franchise.

    Anyway, whereever they move it, they still need money to run it. Its not like Canada is super magic land where you sprinkle pixie dust on the franchise, and it runs for free (as we have to constantly hear about).

  3. Tradedude says:

    If I were to move ’em to any city i’d move ’em to the country that actually invented hocked, maybe saskatchewan would like them, or even winnipeg, quebec, or my hometown hamilton, although there wouldn’t be too many fans supporting them in hamilton cuzz its only 1 hr away from toronto.

  4. nucks2001 says:

    why not move them to Toronto? I’m sure they could support two teams.. there would definetely be enough people who hate the leafs for that..

  5. Robert says:

    No actually all fans actually care for franchises up here and their are many cities who diserve one, Quebec and Winnipeg alone.

  6. titans says:

    Bring em’ to Trenton!!!!!

  7. aafiv says:

    I live about a half-hour from Trenton and our tax dollars are buying the Devils a new arena in Newark already. No thanks.

  8. MantaRay says:

    The Hamilton Sabres????

  9. Tradedude says:

    What about Indianapolis. LMAO!!!!

  10. acebailey says:

    Sorry Canada, although I would like to see another team in Winapeg or Quebec, I think we all know what would happen.

    1st of all, the tax payers will bail out the millionaires, even if they don’t want to.

    But if the team does move, here are possible locations:

    Portland Ore, Las Vegas, Houston, and Seattle. The #2 guy at Microsoft, forget his name, but anyway he owns the NBA franchise in Portland, and rumor is he wants to put an NHL franchise in Seattle. I think he also had somthing to do with the new Marriners stadium.

    Personally I would like to see them move to Hartford, but I doubt it.

  11. OldTimeHockey_28 says:

    With cities like Edmonton and Calgary about to lose teams, They will never move another team to Canada. To much of a chance.

    I personally think it is time for the league to start getting back to a 24 team league.

  12. OldTimeHockey_28 says:

    Personally. I feel that the league would be better off losing the team. Along with a couple others. Sorry Buffalo fans, but it’s just not in the cards.

    By downsizing the league would lose the watered down effect, the product on the ice would improve and money eventually would. I mean you watch games in Florida and there’s like 5000 fans at the games. Come on. Screw’em. They don’t care enough about the team now, pull the plug. How about Atlanta. What’s their average, 3,000. And Carolina. Their team goes to the cup final, is still playing well and half the seats are empty. And the worst has to be New Jersey. I’m not saying to lose the Devils, But come on people, support your team. It’s sad to see a team as good as NJ have the fan support of a Junior ‘A’ team.

    I think the best move would to return to a 24 team league. Hockey was twice the entertainment back then for HALF the Price!

    Just my ranting. Sorry

  13. Gothamcityblueshirts says:

    Quebec cannot support hockey, they lost a NHL team, a IHL team, and this year lost a AHL team. Why would the NHL go to a place that could not handle a AHL team?

  14. mikster says:

    Give it to Winnipeg and hockey fans will go nuts there.

  15. nskerr says:

    Not for nothing, but how can a team that plays in such a cold weather city, with a brand new building and being so close to Canada fold? That is a shame. There are however some great cities in America that would die for a team. Oklahoma City, Seattle, and Houston come to mind. Imagine the rivalry that would occur between Seattle and Vancouver or Seattle and San Jose, or Houston and Dallas or for that matter Oklahoma City and Dallas? Not that I want the Sabres to move, but if they had to, the franchise would be fine.

    Worst comes to worse, fold the team and put every player into a draft and have each NHL team pick a player based on their final result. It would only make the league stronger.

  16. Rushing says:

    I have to agree with you about the millionares crying for money ordeal. They bought the team, it’s their job to take care of it.

    The only way I can see them getting out of not paying for the new arena is the city putting out the money yet the owner/owners paying the city back with interest!!!!!!

    Right now my city is fighting over the rights to build a new stadium for the Dallas Cowboys so if they do get that right our taxes will go up. Now, at the same time they did just go down since we just finished paying off the Texas Rangers stadium a few years early.

  17. burky says:

    First of all, the Quebec City Nordiques did not move because of financial reasons, they’re ticket sales were among the highest in the league even thought the team was brutal. The reason the team moved was because the owner of the team was looking for government subsidies by scaring local fans into thinking he was going to sell the team to a Colorado company. The Colorado company played a long so that when the new edition of expansion franchises came around they wouldn’t be overlooked. But the plan backfired and the government and fans protested any sort of subsidy and the owner went through with the phoney transaction. So quebec lost they’re team and the Colorado company got a franchise they didn’t want.

    The point i’m getting at here is that Quebec is a great hockey town and deserves another team, Quebec fans still hate the Habs so why would they support theyre AHL team? besides the AHL isn’t the NHL and neither is the IHL.

    Though it’s unlikely the NHL will return to Canada anytime soon, or even move out of Buffalo in my opinion, the NHL should seriously Quebec come the next expansion season, if there ever is one.

  18. aaron says:

    Question: if they can support a team, why did both cities already lose ones? And if there are tons of cities who can support them, why are Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, and Ottawa constantly on the verge of folding? Hamilton? I think Grand Rapids is bigger.

    You don’t have enough ppl to support hockey franchises. I’m sorry, but its true.

  19. aaron says:

    Something Allen, I think.

    Seattle’s the most logical place for a new franchise, though I’m not sure how into hockey they are.

  20. aaron says:

    Of course, the bad teams back then were a lot worse than the bad teams now. By about ten fold.

    Though I agree a couple franchises need to be folded, it isn’t for the reason “let’s go back to the parity of the leagues where the bad teams were 12-60!”

  21. pantherboy says:

    Oh man, I’m sick of people saying Canada should have more teams. I mean there is nothing wrong with my country, I like it, just not the teams it has. Why would the NHL move an NHL team to a small ass market like Saskatchewan (what idiot said that?) or Halifax! Way too small.

    And I know what your thinking. “Well it wouldn’t matter because the games would always be sold out”. If all Canadians like you and me love our hockey so much, then how come Calgary can barely get any fans, even when the team is threating to move without more fan support! I say move the team to Portland, or Las Vegas or something. The last thing we need is another Canadian team.

  22. acebailey says:

    I was in Seattle a few months ago and it is a great sports town. One of the few places that Baseball is making a profit, all of those Mariners fans could have somthing to cheer for in the off season. Good rivalry with Vancouver as well.

  23. rojoke says:

    Actually, Calgary was the only team in Canada in the bottom half of the league in average attendance last season, and they have the among lowest ticket prices in the league, if not the lowest. They ranked above Chicago, Boston (Original Six cities), Pittsburgh (Mario can’t pack ’em in anymore?), and the Islanders. And the Islanders finished higher in the standings than the Rangers, who sell out every game, and will from now until the end of time.

    As of December 5, the only Canadian team playing to less than 90% capacity this season is Ottawa, according to the Hockey News. In contrast, only 9 of 24 American franchises are getting 90%+ attendance.

  24. rojoke says:

    Yeah, Steinbrenner is too busy blowing his dough on Japanese ball payers to worry about some dumb hockey team. He only bought into it to have some programming for YES duing the off-season.

  25. rojoke says:

    His name is Paul Allen, and if he does get the Sabres, he’ll move them to Portland, not Seattle. They’ll play out of the Rose Garden, where the Trailblazers play. It’s my understanding that he has a standing offer for any franchise that becomes available, as long as he can move it to Portland.

  26. CaptainCanuck says:

    As much as I’d like to see another team in Canada, the teams already here are having a hard time staying where they are. With the Canadian dollar the way it is now, I don’t think anybody will be moving north of the border anytime soon. What’s really a shame is that Canadians seem to be the only ones who care about hockey these days.

  27. Lint07 says:

    Do you really want to hear that Paul Kariya is going to Toronto for Rob Ray and a draft pick???

    Exactly what I thought…

  28. Lint07 says:

    …I’d be more than happy just to be the guy #2336 in Microsoft…

  29. Lint07 says:

    At least the Panthers gets support from people in Florida…. Did I just said that?

  30. Lint07 says:

    A draft would be really nice but look at the Expos in baseball, they won’t be folded. The NHLPA would never let the league do that in hockey. They would never let the league fold the team because it would mean that some players would lose their job.

    Believe me, they don’t want that to happen.

  31. pantherboy says:

    hey I never said they did get a lot of support. I’m just saying Canada shouldn’t have another team, thats all.

  32. Obcd says:

    they lost the NHL team because of players salaries but they were praticly sold out at each game. They lost the IHL team because they tought it was an insult to receive this kind of team. And they lost the AHL team because they were angry after the Habs because they recalled their best players without talking to them before doing so. Before saying such things you should try to know a little more.

  33. Obcd says:

    you think Nashville and Columbus are big markets? They are as big as these two cities you named.

  34. hatterson says:

    Maybe you should do a little research before you post your article. Hamister does not want money to buy the team. He said that he and his partner are paying that $70 million on thier own. It would be unfair to ask for that from the tax-payers.

    However, Hamister does want to help fix up the HSBC Arena. He said he will be unwilling to give his money up to cover the losses of the arena. After all the arena is half owned by the tax-payers of Western New York.

    Here is where it is explained in that article you wrote about “Bettman emphasized that while the new owners are not seeking public financial support to complete their purchase, they need assistance in the form capital improvements. That includes the construction of a parking ramp and improvements inside and around HSBC Arena.”

    Also about your complaints about tax-payers having to foot the bill. It doesn’t matter if the Sabres are in Buffalo or not their is still approximatly $23 million of tax-payer debt on the arena that has to be paid off. Hamister is not trying to steal money off of the people he is simply trying to get them to pay their debt’s now instead of later.

  35. hatterson says:

    One little correction. The brand new building that you speak of is actually 7 years old has is in need of imporvement.

  36. hatterson says:

    Never mind fan support in Hamilton they would never get approval to put a team there in the first place. The Maple Leafs have a right to stop any team from moving into that area and they would excersise that right. They even made a fuss about Edmonton moving a minor league franchise into Toronto (in the end they couldn’t stop it because the team was in Hamilton already so the proximity rights were thrown out, but they sure tried.)

    About Saskatchewan and Winnipeg having a team. I don’t think that either place could support one. Winnipeg has already lost a franchise for financial reasons and Saskatchewan has it’s population too spread out. Regina and Saskatoon have populations of about 200,000 each. This wouldn’t be too bad if they had suburbs surrounding them but they don’t. I remember that when I lived in south Saskatchwan (three years ago) you would literaly hit farm fields once you got outside city limits. I would love to see a franchise in Sask but I am afraid it won’t happen.

    Quebec however, does sound promising. I think that they could get support from that area. However, if the NHL does decide to move there it must be by relocating another team. The NHL should not expand, I think that the league is too watered down as it is. Expanding would hurt the quality of the game.

  37. burky says:

    I beleive the Flames sold out 97% of their seats last year, or so I read.

  38. pantherboy says:

    Columbus sure is. They sell out almost all of their games. Maybe not Nashville, but Columbus for sure.

  39. edmontonrules says:

    I like the way you think.

  40. nskerr says:

    The NHLPA does not nearly have the same strength the MLBPA has. If they did, do you actually think there would be a potential lockout after next year?

  41. nskerr says:

    A 7 year old building that needs improvement? Too bad. As an Islander fan in a 30 year old building, the Sabres should get no help from NY Gov’t because at least the Islanders draw 14-16 thousand for every home game in a building that should be condemned.

  42. revolution says:

    Uh..the Habs’ farm team is the Hamilton Bulldogs. The Quebec Citadelles folded at the end of the last season.

  43. revolution says:

    The Sabres are currently in a position that could be compared to Montreal Expos in MLB. The Expos wanted a new stadium, the government said no. I’m not entirely sure that the NHL accepted the highest offer it could for the team. Several newspapers and columnists were reporting that a businessman from Rochester apparently offered higher than Hamister and Berman..

    However the NHL wants the team to stay in Buffalo. Still, it’s surprising that the asking price for the Sabres is only $68 million, it costs at least $100 million for an expansion franchise. Also, according to Forbes magazine, the Sabres are valued at around $90 million. If the Sabres are staying in Buffalo, they’re going to need some sort of taxpayer subsidy.

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