It helps that Portland has already … Basically, he accused the Glendale City Council of trolling the team. The Pirates lost 4-3 in a shootout to the Albany River Rats. Allen won’t break the bank for the NHL. Professional Hockey History in Portland. Under general manager and CEO Wood, who invested in management and creative marketing, the Pirates led the AHL in tickets sold, sponsorships, and sellouts for their first 3 years. Portland Trail Blazers ... Then it was the Penguins, one of the NHL’s crown jewel franchises (despite a couple of bankruptcies deep in their … The Pirates also stated they would continue their lawsuit against the arena with the hopes of playing there in the future. The Sabres' faithful were pleased with the aggressive play and numerous fights during the game. On April 17, 2013, the Pirates and Cumberland County announced a five-year lease, with the option for another five years, to stay at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland, though that was thrown into question due to a dispute over revenue from food sales (see lease dispute section below). Wood relocated the team to his home region of Portland, Maine, leading to the creation of the Portland Pirates in 1993 with an affiliation to the Washington Capitals. It’s a bad situation. The Chairman of the Cross Insurance Arena Board of Trustees criticized the Pirates for demanding more of a "subsidy" for themselves and stated their desired lease agreement would cost county taxpayers money. Yes, Phoenix. Last night, the Stanley Cup was handed out to the Chicago Blackhawks. Then the Pirates again made it to the Calder Cup conference finals again in 2008 before being eliminated by the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in seven games. Neither is baseball. They further claimed to only break even on the presence of the Pirates and that their expenses would actually be less without them. This included an excellent 100 point season in 1999–00 only to be eliminated from the playoffs in the first round. The organization hosted the AHL All-Star Classic in 2003 and 2010.  On May 4, 2016, the Pirates announced it had signed a letter of intent with an outside buyer to sell and relocate the franchise for the 2016–17 season. That’s a deal no one is eager to do, and could be a major reason why there hasn’t been any traction on expansion this year. Vegas was the league's 31st franchise, while Seattle is scheduled to hit the ice in 2020. Do you think that Portland could support an NHL team? In the end, Arizona kept the team with a new lease on Gila River Arena. Portland Winterhawks - WHL - hockey team page with roster, stats, transactions at Eliteprospects.com Allen, of course, has no part in the NBA to Seattle movement – so if the mogul wants hockey, despite his roots, it will be in Portland. Can Portland land an NHL team? With a brand new arena opening in downtown San Francisco for the Golden State Warriors, it’s the perfect opportunity for an NHL team – though their owner doesn’t seem to have much appetite for a hockey team. The Pirates also signed a three-year affiliation agreement with the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. We’re ready. With the Ducks, the Pirates had more mixed success. During the 2012–13 Season, the Pirates played six games at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee in Lewiston, Maine in preparation of renovations at the Cross Insurance Arena. Portland, professional baseball's perpetual bridesmaid, is apparently on the short list of cities that could be getting a Major League Baseball team… Some big cities in this country are bad sports towns. The agreement prevented any further Pirates home games from being played outside the arena.. This is a gaping opportunity. The league approved of the sale and relocation of the franchise to Portland on June 15. Do you think Portland would be suitable for a team? As the famous Stompin’ Tom Connors song goes, “the good old hockey game is the best game you can name,” and many local fans know this tune from our visits to our local arenas. Liking the way the Knights did business, Ebright contacted Knights owner, W. Godfrey Wood, asking to relocate the Skipjacks to a better market. The NHL in Seahawk, Packer and Browns country. Bill Daly, the league’s deputy commissioner, said on Monday that the league is committed to Phoenix, and the Coyotes would enjoy more support if only they had more stability. If it were, hockey would be here already. The franchise was previously known as the Baltimore Skipjacks from 1982 to 1993. Cain said that Alfond's efforts did not play a role in their decision on the lawsuit, but could help the team going forward. For the full season-by-season history, see List of Portland Pirates seasons. The chairman of the trustees stated that he found Cain's comments on the issue "constructive" and he thus was willing to restart talks.  On June 15, the franchise's new name was announced as the Springfield Thunderbirds. The support is here. Considering that he already owns the arena, bringing in an NHL team isn’t a particularly high-risk venture. The Winterhawks split their home games between the Memorial Coliseum and the Moda Center , which they share with the Portland Trail Blazers of the National Basketball Association … Last week, the Glendale City Council voted to terminate that lease, sending the franchise back into uncertainty bordering on purgatory before a move. The NHL usually supplies only a handful of players to teams in the ECHL and most of the players on the roster have standard ECHL contracts. The Phoenix Coyotes said they were prepared to move forward despite having hoped differences with the arena would be resolved. , On May 7, 2014, they announced a one-year extension of the affiliation agreement and a small increase in ticket prices as part of the changes the team was doing to rebuild confidence with the community. Officially only #50 has been retired by the Portland Pirates. I know that the NHL isn't really looking to expand right now, but I'm visiting the city, and I'm in a bar right now after a Winterhawks (Western Hockey League team) game at the Rose Garden arena. The official website of the Maine Mariners of the ECHL 'AA' hockey league is your source for Mariners news, tickets, video, merchandise and more!  The transaction was approved by the AHL on May 23, 2016, and the franchise became the Springfield Thunderbirds. It’s off-beat enough, lends itself to the kind of rabid support that this city has mastered in basketball and soccer, and there is strong existing support for the WHL’s Portland Winterhawks – who lead their league in attendance. The Pirates were forced to play their final game of the 2013–14 season at their 400-seat practice facility in Saco, due to the Colisée being double booked with the game and a circus. Miami. The dates for four games had to be changed from the original schedule. Gary Bettman, who probably still has stock in Freddie Mac, doesn’t want to give up on Arizona. share. A Portland NHL team would draw fans from all of the Willamette Valley and the rest of Oregon, but also SW Washington and even up into Puget Sound--there's more people from Seattle to Eugene than there is in the entire Front Range of Colorado. The top ten most popular teams have all won multiple Stanley Cups with the exception of the Vancouver Canucks in 9th place, they've made it the finals on three separate occasions but have fallen just short each time. It’s much more a slam-dunk. The league announced it has postponed games for the Buffalo Sabres through Feb. 8 … Hockey is the only game we can get, and out of those three, the only one that would be a smashing success. Trail Blazers President and CEO Chris McGowan is well-respected in NHL circles from his time at AEG where he was heavily invested in hockey with the wildly successful Los Angeles Kings. , On August 5, 2008, the team announced that Kevin Dineen has been retained as head coach.. Portland’s record of supporting its sports teams is clear; both the Trail Blazers and Timbers enjoy support that is almost unrivaled in their respective leagues, and with the city’s sports portfolio not matched by its recent and continuing growth, there is plenty of oxygen for a third major team. Arizona won’t last. Let’s hope Paul Allen wants it. On May 23, the franchise was relocated to Springfield, Massachusetts, following the sale and relocation of the Springfield Falcons franchise to Tucson, Arizona. If the NHL can be a smash hit in the desert, it can be popular anywhere. The Bay Area already has an NHL team in San Jose, but there’s room for another. In May 2011, the Sabres had indicated a willingness to break from its affiliation agreement with the Pirates and re-affiliate with the Rochester Americans, with Sabres owner Terry Pegula intending to buy the Amerks. The Portland Winterhawks are proud to announce three players are named on NHL Central Scouting’s Players to Watch List for the 2021 NHL Draft. Portland’s Cross Insurance Arena, the renamed and refurbished Cumberland County Civic Center, has been home to the Maine Mariners of yore (1977-1992), the Portland … TV ratings vary a lot from market to market, but they're usually pretty low in the States as it is. The official site of the Portland Trail Blazers. But as long as the NHL is Arizona, that talk will be serious and routine. Sporting top NHL prospects Seth Jones and Ty Rattie, the WHL's Portland Winterhawks won the WHL championship and ranked fourth in the 22-team … A conversation with a former Trail Blazers executive who was part of the last serious efforts to bring major-league hockey to Oregon. , Maine Senate President Justin Alfond, who is from Portland, announced that he submitted emergency legislation to the Maine Legislature to allow the Pirates to receive a share of alcohol revenue, as the original agreement had called for. Previous-Owner Brian Shaw was a pioneer in many aspects of Junior Hockey, not only moving a team to the United States for the first time, but also is credited with designing the current CHL championship format of the champion from each of the three leagues (WHL, OHL, and QMJHL) as well as a host-city team competing for the Memorial Cup. Portland has something of a perfect storm here for an NHL team. Allen, who would immediately be one of the league’s richest owners, a city starved for another sports team and ready to appreciate a sport that, along with soccer, is the most refreshing and exciting in the country, and an arena that is NHL-ready today. Literally. "Portland has an NHL-ready arena in the Rose Garden, and that city was a rumored destination for the Coyotes once before (the move came a lot closer to happening than most fans know). The four most popular teams have all won Stanley Cup(s) in the past decade. But the relocation of a pre-existing NHL team is always a possibility for future hockey hotbeds. The rumor mill will likely continue to churn until the Coyotes settle on their final destination. Here's a fun piece of speculation going around today: It's possible that the Arizona Coyotes may be moving to the Pacific Northwest, and Portland may be an option for the National Hockey League team. Due to the dispute, the Pirates played their entire 2013-14 home schedule in Lewiston. , A team of investors headed by former Pirates executives W. Godfrey Wood and Brad Church—the latter a former Portland player as well—announced their intentions to put an ECHL team in Portland to fill the void, joining as early as 2017. In 2005, the Pirates announced a five-year lease extension at the Cross Insurance Arena, ending speculation that the team might relocate. Coincidentally, or maybe not, the Blackhawks share the same jerseys and logos as Portland’s Winterhawks. Portland has something of a perfect storm here for an NHL team. The Pirates had to sign off on the agreement, since their agreement with the Sabres ran through 2014.  Their next season they had 104 points but were upset in the 1st round of the playoffs. Tampa Bay. Philosophically, hockey works in Portland. Portland Pirates [AHL] Parent Teams. Allen, who would immediately be one of the league’s richest owners, a city starved for another sports team and ready to appreciate a sport that, along with soccer, is the most refreshing and exciting in the country, and an arena that is NHL-ready today. The arena is here.  On June 24, 2011, the American Hockey League approved the sale of the Rochester Americans to Pegula, it also included the buyout of the affiliation contract with the Portland Pirates. Ron Cain, the new majority owner stated he was not concerned about getting a new affiliation agreement with the Coyotes for 2015–16 because it seemed likely that they were going to move their affiliate closer to Glendale, Arizona.. Seattle's arena won't be done for awhile. The first team based in the United States to play for Lord Stanley’s Cup was the Portland Rosebuds, who lost the 1916 series, three games to two, … The Portland Winterhawks continue to be one of the top junior hockey franchises in developing and producing NHL talent. Their home arena was the Cross Insurance Arena in downtown Portland, Maine. The agreement included the sharing of concessions revenue the Pirates sought, which may or may not have included alcohol sales pending passage of Sen. Alfond's bill. On March 17, 2010, the Pirates signed a two-year lease extension with the Cross Insurance Arena. The Portland Winterhawks are a junior ice hockey team based in Portland, Oregon, playing in the Western Hockey League (WHL), one of three leagues making up the Canadian Hockey League (CHL). For Allen, there don’t appear to be any real drawbacks. It have the 2nd best attendance in the WHL, they have an arena built that is hockey ready, and the fans are very classy imo :) Also Portland only has 1 big 4 team which is basketball, and nfl and mlb would never happen. The NHL schedule will need to make some adjustments. In McGowan, Allen has a point man for hockey that he can trust. , The Pirates announced on September 26, 2013, that they would indeed play their entire 2013–14 home schedule at the Colisée. It was then announced that the Pirates would play in Buffalo twice in 2009–10. Until then, … An NHL franchise in Portland makes perfect sense. It’s simple. , After obtaining a majority share of the team, former minority owner Ron Cain stated on December 17 that should an agreement with arena trustees not be reached within a month, that he would consider moving the team to the aforementioned Saco land or even out of state if necessary. Second-year forwards Jack O'Brien, Tyson Kozak…. In 2013, if you believe reports, Paul Allen almost bought the Arizona Coyotes and moved them to Portland. A spokesman for the AHL said that the Pirates had the rights to the Portland market and could play anywhere within a 50-mile radius of the city. 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