Jump to content
The Official Site of the Carolina Hurricanes
Sign in to follow this  
max

Rats' Future With 'Canes Uncertain

Recommended Posts

Canes may have Charlotte AHL team

ATLANTA -- Although no official confirmation has been made, it's expected the Canes will have their American Hockey League affiliate in Charlotte next season.

The Canes have been affiliated with the Albany River Rats for the last four years but are in the last year of that arrangement. Hurricanes management in the past has expressed a desire to have an AHL team closer to Raleigh and in North Carolina, if possible.

Rats owner Walter Rabb has said he would be willing to sell the team but only if the franchise remained in Albany. 

The Charlotte Checkers of the ECHL are owned by Michael Kahn.

http://blogs.newsobserver.com/canes/canes-may-have-charlotte-ahl-team

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As someone who has started rumors about this move for years, hoping that this would one day happen, I'm psyched.  Having grown up in the Glens Falls area rooting for the Adirondack Red Wings, I'm sad that Albany will have to go through what G.F. did when the Wings left.  I wonder if the AHL is betting on the Phantoms success once the Rats leave town.  I remember those great games in the G.F. Civic Center back in the 80's.  That place was standing room only and LOUD!!!  Or, I wonder if the Phantoms will move down 87 to relocate in Albany.

We here in Charlotte have an ECHL team, but Charlotte is NOT an ECHL town.  With over 1.75 million people in the metro, many of whom are NE transplants, the AHL will do very well here.  It makes sense for the Canes who will consolidate Caniac nation in North Carolina, where it can grow Canes loyalty in the Western region of the state (Charlotte/Hickory/Asheville).   I hate it for Albany, but love it for Charlotte.  We'll get to see the best young talent the organization has and then root them on in Raleigh when they get called up. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I do feel for the Rats fans in NY, I am also excited about this for those of us here in NC. Back in June I suggested:

How about this:

- Checkers become Canes AHL affiliate

- Rats become Rangers ECHL affiliate

Basedon the attendance numbers and the move towards keeping farm teamscloser to their NHL affiliate - wouldn't this make sense?

A tripto see guys in the system play by fans of each NHL team is much morepractical with this type of swap, naturally helping attendance in bothplaces.

From here in Wake Forest, I'd certainly make a trip toCharlotte to check out Canes guys a few times a season, but I'm notmaking that same trip to Albany, NY. A local TV deal with Time Warner(cable access channels?) could maybe make sense then too. I know,that's probably a little too optimistic since we can't even get all thedamn NHL games on TV around here.
blink.gif

Hopefully something like this can happen that wouldn't leave the Albany-area fans without hockey completely.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, so someone help me out with the details. It's the Canes franchise that holds the rights to the players. So if the franchise makes its affiliate team here in Charlotte, the players transfer, but not necessarily the Rats franchise? I'd love to take a weekend to run to Charlotte for shopping and watch Casey Borer and the young'uns play. For me, this is a win-win situation for the Canes (not necessarily Albany). Less expenses in shuffling players back and forth, for one, and growing it's fan base outside the immediate area. This is a SMART move.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just in through the Canes twitter: http://vyous.com/sports/n...tte---albany-times-union

More rumors to fuel the flames. Looks like the Rats moving here might be a done deal. We'll just have to wait and see if there is any official word. This is just a report coming from Albany that is sourcing a report from here in Raleigh. Don't know how reliable this all is, but I thought I'd post it just so we can keep tabs on everything that is being said.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As much as I hate to see any town lose their team and a source of revenue, this would be wonderful.  I already support the Checkers and Stingrays as much as I can, but it'd be better to be able to watch our prospects and up and comers play.  I'd definitely opt in for some sort of ticket package as its too close from me to pass that up.  I hope this happens.  The Time Warner Cable Arena is a nice venue too.  I've seen the Bobcats and Checkers play there and its a nice modern place.  I think Charlotte can definitely support it, if they market it right.  And it'd be great to see Canes support grow in this area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Charlotte's pretty much outgrown it's ECHL status so this would work but I'd feel for the fans in Albany who've had nothing but good things to say about our team's younger brother up there. Just what would happen w/ the Checkers though? perhaps a trade with Albany? after all the Checkers are the Rangers ECHL team. Would make sense and Albany at least gets a team.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm stoked about the AHL coming (maybe) to Charlotte.  I just hope we keep the Checker name itself which has a history from the early days of hockey in Dixie.  Also, the Time-Warner Arena is a nice venue, very much like the RBC Center.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just in through the Canes twitter: http://vyous.com/sports/n...tte---albany-times-union

More rumors to fuel the flames. Looks like the Rats moving here might be a done deal. We'll just have to wait and see if there is any official word. This is just a report coming from Albany that is sourcing a report from here in Raleigh. Don't know how reliable this all is, but I thought I'd post it just so we can keep tabs on everything that is being said.

Ok.. so this is confusing.  That link posted yesterday says its done.. but when i googled it the link came up for a post from two hours ago that the owner was "considering it"... is it done or not? 

So disregarding the strange reporting that may or may not be true.. where does this leave us for the Charlotte hockey scene? What will this do to the Checkers?  Will they have to fold and leave town (or disappear) like what happened to the Greensboro Generals?

It seems the consensus is that Charlotte can support an AHL team, I don't doubt that, but can it support both? Will there be both? Like Cpt Jack suggests, will the Rats organization take over the Checkers?  From someone who grew up in the Charlotte area, I would hate to see this happen.. the Checkers have been around for a long time and have won several Kelly Cups (a good arguement against hockey "not working" in the south).  I'd hate to see them suddenly be gone.  Could they move? Perhaps.  That sounds like an idea. 

Since the "affliation" between the ECHL and NHL is unoffical at best and mostly the work of good PR by the ECHL, why not leave the Checkers in place and have the Checkers become the Canes ECHL team over the Everblades.  How that would work with the Rangers I don't know.

The Flyers fan in me feels bad for the Phantoms.  Forced to move out of Philly and they pick Adirondack to drum up the cross town rivalry with Albany and it seems like it was going well for both teams and now that will be gone unless another team moves to Albany.  What a mess.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So if the River Rats leave Albany Charlotte with have 2 hockey teams? Or will the Checkers leave town? Im confused.
I would think it would be like when the Canes came in and the Ice Caps had to leave.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What I would like to see more than anything is the 'Canes playing a couple of pre-season games in Charlotte, Greensboro, Columbia, Charleston, etc. Really important IMO that SC gets on board as well as the rest of NC. I think what would be good is a Canes-Caps game in Charleston. The Stingrays are the Caps ECHL team so it would make sense for both teams.

My guess is the Checkers would stay in Carolina and move to Greensboro or Greenville, SC.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What I would like to see more than anything is the 'Canes playing a couple of pre-season games in Charlotte, Greensboro, Columbia, Charleston, etc. Really important IMO that SC gets on board as well as the rest of NC. I think what would be good is a Canes-Caps game in Charleston. The Stingrays are the Caps ECHL team so it would make sense for both teams.

My guess is the Checkers would stay in Carolina and move to Greensboro or Greenville, SC.

Does Greenville still have the Growwl? I'd love the Checkers to move to Greensboro now that I live in Winston, but I'd rather it be a Canes affiliated team that was close by.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any of you Charlotte folks (or Raleigh-ites relocated from the Charlotte area) have any idea what the general consensus of the Checkers fans is about the potential deal?  From what I've heard, the Checkers do pretty well and have a nice arena.  Would they be upset about losing the Checkers, happy about gaining an AHL team?  What if they didn't keep the Checkers name?  Excited about being more connected to the Canes or indifferent? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What I would like to see more than anything is the 'Canes playing a couple of pre-season games in Charlotte, Greensboro, Columbia, Charleston, etc. Really important IMO that SC gets on board as well as the rest of NC. I think what would be good is a Canes-Caps game in Charleston. The Stingrays are the Caps ECHL team so it would make sense for both teams.

My guess is the Checkers would stay in Carolina and move to Greensboro or Greenville, SC.

I'm sure Greensboro or Greenville fans would love to have a team again since it has been so long for them.  I feel bad for Albany it's an awful feeling when you lose your team.   

  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any of you Charlotte folks (or Raleigh-ites relocated from the Charlotte area) have any idea what the general consensus of the Checkers fans is about the potential deal?  From what I've heard, the Checkers do pretty well and have a nice arena.  Would they be upset about losing the Checkers, happy about gaining an AHL team?  What if they didn't keep the Checkers name?  Excited about being more connected to the Canes or indifferent? 
I'm curious about that too.  If this does come true, I can tell all the Charlotte people that if this doesn't excite you, it should.  AHL hockey is so much better than ECHL level hockey.  Even being a huge hockey fan when I moved to Raleigh in the early 90's, it was hard for me to get excited about Icecaps games.  The level of talent and overall speed of the AHL game is just so much closer to the NHL. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
From Yahoo's Puck Daddy blog: River Rats relocation rumors and the tough love of AHL

The talk about the Rangers moving their team from Hartford to Albany is interesting. I wonder how the folks in Hartford would feel about Karmanos being responsible (indirectly, in this case) for them losing another team?

As I've mentioned before, I feel for Albany, having grown up just down the road. That said, they benefited from the Utica Devils folding, so what goes around comes around. I hope they are able to find another team. The idea of the current Checkers team moving up there sounds most ideal, but that's a lot of dots to connect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a Canes fan near Charlotte, I am STOKED that we may get an AHL team here.  No offense to the Checkers, but the cost of the tickets to their games is not worth it.  We only get to a Canes game once or twice a year due to costs(cost of tickets, plus gas to drive up and back) so to be able to see a good game at a good price with minimal gasoline expended would definitely let us see quite a few games more than we can now.  Don't get me wrong, we watch ALL the televised Canes games, but it's not the same as being there.  To see the up-and-comers play live would be great.  I could definitely say that if the cost is right, AHL season tickets could be in my future. Some of our friends feel the same way. I feel bad for Albany, but excited for us.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...