2 march 2004- blackhawk fans annonymous
(this is a copy of an editorial i wrote for avalancheboard.com and nationalhockeycoalition.com)
the following opinions are those of the author and they are not held by avalancheboard.com or nationalhockeycoalition.com or its affiliated sites.
ever wonder why some teams still are around?
take the chicago blackhawks for example. they have arguably the worst owner in sports. owner frank wirtz has:
and yet he still has the audacity to expect the fans to come out to the united center to watch a pathetic team be competitive with the pittsburgh penguins, columbus blue jackets and washington capitols.
and, oh yeah, he traded away his teams most recognizable face since tony amonte and jeremy roenick while expecting the fans to come out and watch a pathetic team be competitive with the pittsburgh penguins, columbus blue jackets and washington capitols. on sunday february 29 the hawks played hosted the florida panthers in front of 12,177.
meanwhile in the suburb of rosemont, illinois the chicago wolves are a hot team. they are 30-20-8-3, 3rd in their division and 7th overall in the ahl. on the very same sunday the wolves played host to the san antonio rampage (former louisville panthers and current florida affiliate) and had a season high 12,938 at the rosemont horizon/allstate arena.
which team is the minor league organ-i-zation here? the one with the high paid athletes in front of a cavernous empty arena or the one with not so high paid athletes in front of an empty (but not necessarily cavernous) arena?
the fans of chicago have spoken. the second city used to be a viable hockey town when the cubs season ended (don't kid yourself. chicago is a cubs town). rocking arenas, high spirits. life was good. then frankie came along and made being a blackhawk fan about as popular as being steve bartman and about as visible too.
the trend seems to be getting worse with time. the thrashers are building a nice core of players in rosemont and as a result, the wolves have won two turner cups. meanwhile the hawks have fired gm after gm for spending money. frank wirtz may be the only owner in history to make money while fielding the worst franchise in all of sports according to espn the magazine. and with the impending labor lockout (some say a few weeks, others say 2005-2006 season) the blackhawks may be annihilated off the face of the sports planet through contraction or the dissolution of the nhl.
would chicago be better off with the hawks? maybe they would. the city doesn't know they exist anyway.
but we'll take them down in louisville.