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Take your side: Canadian Teams vs Sun Belt Teams

Grown adults laugh at teenagers and other adults that find themselves torn into two teams for a book and movies series.  Odds are I don’t even have to name it and you know what is is just by me saying Team Edward or Team Jacob.   We laugh, call them obsessed and say they need to get a life; yet we have done the same thing in the hockey world.  So now it is your turn:  Team Canadian Teams vs Team Sun Belt Expansion.  

Everyone has their reasons for why they cheer for their own team: you grew up there, as a child your favorite player was from that team, you like the jersey colors (yes I’ve heard this from a few people).

People say expanding into the sun belt area of the United States is a mistake.  Hockey doesn’t belong there. Why not? Because they don’t get snow and ice? Most of people in the north still go to indoor rinks.  Hockey isn’t just an outdoor sport anymore.  In fact playing it outdoors has become a novelty attraction. 

But Canadian teams are better than the Sun Belt teams

Are they?  Just because of location that makes them better?  Didn’t the Oilers finish last in the league this year? 

Lets look at it this way…  The following are the outcomes of the Stanley Cup finals over the last 20 years: 

1990 Edmonton Oilers  One Point to Canadian Teams

1991 Pittsburgh Penguins

1992 Pittsburgh Penguins

1993 Montreal Canadiens One Point to Canadian Teams

1994 New York Rangers

1995 New Jersey Devils 

1996 Colorado Avalanche

1997 Detroit Red Wings

1998 Detroit Red Wings

1999 Dallas Stars One Point Sun Belt

2000 New Jersey Devils

2001 Colorado Avalanche 

2002 Detroit Red Wings

2003 New Jersey Devils

2004 Tampa Bay Lightning One point Sun Belt

2005  lock out

2006 Carolina Hurricanes One point Sun Belt

2007  Anaheim Ducks (Some call this a Sun Belt team some don’t so half a point)

2008 Detroit Red Wings

2009 Pittsburgh Penguins

2010 Chicago Blackhawks

That is 2 points to the Canadian Teams and 3.5 to teams in the Sun Belt.   In the last 20 years the Sun Belt teams have almost double the Stanley Cups as the Canadian teams.  So why is it we say that hockey doesn’t belong there? 

The passion of the people?

Passion doesn’t come over night.  The Montreal Canadiens have been around for 100 years and you want to compare their fan loyalty to towns like Phoenix who didn’t get their team until 1996.  Yes I realize that the Winnipeg Jets established the organization in 1972 but Phoenix did not receive the team until 1996.

The NHL is a business and part of the business world is to grow your consumer base.  It takes time for the loyalty to develop; Phoenix Coyotes need to stabilize as a business.  People are not drawn to a company that is in constant conflict within itself.  Sports are used to escape from reality, to put aside the stresses of daily life (especially in hard economic times) to find something to believe in, to feel apart of just like some with Twilight (there I said it).

Tags: Anaheim Ducks Canadian Teams Carolina Hurricanes Chicago Blackhawks Colorado Avalanche Dallas Stars Detroit Red Wings Edmonton Oilers Hockey Montreal Canadiens New Jersey Devils New York Rangers NHL NHL Lock Out Out Door Hockey Phoenix Coyotes Pittsburgh Penguins Pond Hockey Sun Belt Teams Tampa Bay Lightning Team Edward Team Jacob Toronto Maple Leafs Twilight

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