Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Truth is finally out, and it's insulting

Although certain events over the past 20 years suggested NHL bigwigs are averse to a Hamilton NHL franchise because of its lack of marketability in the USA, an anonymous NHL governor made this point very clear:

"[Hamilton's] a minor league town... How could we sell a team from Hamilton? Do you think the New York Rangers want to put the Hamilton Steelers on their marquee at Madison Square Garden? Do you think anyone in Manhattan would buy tickets to see them?"

How insulting. Someone should tell the governors that granting Hamilton a team would educate Americans on another great Canadian city. One of the best rivalries in North American Football is between the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and the Toronto Argonauts. Most Canadian sports fans know this. Canadian cities, including Hamilton, have unique identities including their proud sports traditions and rivalries, so a statement like this can only be taken as an insult.

If the litmus test for identifying NHL-worthy cities depends on the embarrassment felt by a signage worker at Madison Square Gardens and the snootiness of New York hockey fans, then I can no longer be a fan of this elitist sport.

1. The Canadian Press. Second NHL team for Toronto? Retrieved Oct. 21, 2008, from thespec.com.