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  1. Default Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I'd love for Oklahoma City to end up with a pro team. That is something former Oklahoma City Mayor Ron Norick has wanted to see for 14 years. It is no doubt an exciting time, and a definite economic boon to our economy. So, the question is.... is it worth it?

    For the city's image, yes. For our economy, yes. For quality entertainment, yes. As a role model for our children or any sport enthusiast, no.

    Professional sports athletes are a joke. Half of them are on drugs. Some beat their wifes, some assault other players or even fans. The whole show cares nothing more than getting a fat paycheck. The NHL is either on strike or is talking about it. MLB has already been on strike, and it's because the six or seven figures they are getting paid apparently isn't enough. They're greedy.

    Years back, it was for the love of the sport, now it's all about money, corporate sponsorship, price-gouging fees to air commercials during the Super Bowl. (Come on, we all know it's extortion. Who'd want to pay more than $1 million for a 30 second spot? Well, I guess many companies are crazy enough to.

    But in the midst of the controversy, crime, drug use and dollar bills, I can't even see the game anymore.

    If we do get a team, I just hope the leagues will realize they have forgotten that passion, and theat the team contributes much to our city. It may be a few more years before we see a team. Las Vegas, Virginia Beach, Richmond and Austin all are slightly larger metropolitan areas than Oklahoma City and none have a professional team. On the other hand... poor, sparsely populated and lower-income Utah has an NBA team in SLC. I guess because the almost the whole state lives in isolated Salt Lake.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I totally agree. On another post, I had mentioned to another poster that Pro Sports is not an answer, merely icing on the cake. It is not feasible right now and will not be for a few more years. The passion is more prevalent in what we have now where guys are still struggling to pay the bills. We can't even keep attendance significant enough each game to deserve a pro team. I would personally love to see an NHL team but frankly, we are not ready for it. I think trying to attract a major attraction such as a Sega Game Works, Hard Rock, Dave and Busters, or something of that nature would be better promotion for the city. Look at Las Vegas and Austin, they are happening places without pro sports. Its the people not the place. We need to change our negative perspectives the locals tend to have.

  3. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Why do you say we do not have "professional" sports in this city? The players for the Blazers, RedHawks, Yarddawgz, and Ballhawgs all get paid a salary to play their sport. THAT makes them professional. The level of play does not make one a professional or amature.

    I have said numerous times and will continue to say, THIS CITY DOES NEED AND CAN SUPPORT MAJOR LEAGUE SPORTS. In the following sports. Football (NFL and AFL), Basketball (NBA) and Hockey (NHL). I see no time frame for MLB. If these people would just realize they will pay the same money for the sport that they pay for Bubba University football or for the screetch music concert, then they would wake up and start being optomistic instead of pessimistic. THAT is part of the change this city needs.

    IT IS ALL IN THE ATTITUDE!

  4. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Honestly, I don't feel that OKC could support a NHL team. For one it's a niche sport that outside of a couple of exceptions, doesn't get the audience outside Canada and the northern part of the US that it needs. Secondly, the NHL as it is is a mess anyway due to the lockout and the fact that the heads of the NHL and PA are not speaking whatsoever to find a comprimise or solution to save the future, much less this season. I hate to say that as a hockey fan, but unfortuneatly it's true.

  5. #5
    Patrick Guest

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I agree with all of you. Right now NHL is not the answer. The league is a mess. And for the next few years, major league sports probably isn't the answer. I doubt we could ever support MLB...too many games. But we could probably support NFL, NBA, or NHL. Obviously we don't have the facility right now for NFL, so that's really out of the question. But, the success the Sooners have and the amount people are willing to pay to go see them, does shed some light on how well major league sports could do in our city if it was marketed correctly. Unfortunately, I don't think NBA is really right at the time either. We can't even get an ABA team together, much less and NBA team!

    But, now is the time to start putting our heads together and determining what the next best step would be for our city. Personally, I'd say go for either NHL or NBA...just wait awhile.

    You can't look at our current minor league teams to gauge how successful a major league team would be. Nashville, for example, has a minor league baseball team in our league (PCL). They don't do any better than the Redhawks do in attendance. But, Nashville is able to support and NFL team! Why? Well, it's a statewide effort! They're the Tennesse Titans! They're a state team! Now, I don't at all push leaving "City" out of a future team name, but I was just trying to make a point about how the entire state of Tennesse supports the Titans, and that the Nashvile Sounds baseball team wasn't a good indication of the success of a major league sports team!

  6. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Quote Originally Posted by El Gato Pollo Loco!!!
    Honestly, I don't feel that OKC could support a NHL team. For one it's a niche sport that outside of a couple of exceptions, doesn't get the audience outside Canada and the northern part of the US that it needs. Secondly, the NHL as it is is a mess anyway due to the lockout and the fact that the heads of the NHL and PA are not speaking whatsoever to find a comprimise or solution to save the future, much less this season. I hate to say that as a hockey fan, but unfortuneatly it's true.
    Try telling the 20,000 or so fans who pack the arena in Anaheim, Oakland, San Jose, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago and St. Louis that the NHL does not grab an audience outside the Northern part of the United States and Canada. Plus, try telling the people in Edmonton and Ottawa that the NHL draws most fans from Canada. The one's I cited in the States are not Northern cities. Four are west, one south and two midwest. The Canadian teams I cited are losing money with low attendance.

    No. If a two bit AA hockey team can draw a large attendance, then the NHL will do better... Better quality play, better fights.

  7. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Quote Originally Posted by mranderson
    Try telling the 20,000 or so fans who pack the arena in Anaheim, Oakland, San Jose, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago and St. Louis that the NHL does not grab an audience outside the Northern part of the United States and Canada. Plus, try telling the people in Edmonton and Ottawa that the NHL draws most fans from Canada. The one's I cited in the States are not Northern cities. Four are west, one south and two midwest. The Canadian teams I cited are losing money with low attendance.

    No. If a two bit AA hockey team can draw a large attendance, then the NHL will do better... Better quality play, better fights.
    Well for one, Oakland doesn't have a NHL team. Anahiem , other than the run they had for the Cup a couple of years ago hasn't really ever had that good of a fan base. If you did read my post, you would have seen the phrase "With a few Exceptions", which St. Louis, Dallas, LA, and San Jose are exceptions. Chicago's counts as a "northern city" in this context due to the fact that it is an "Original Six" city or you would also have to say Detroit is a midwest city.
    Also the fact that Chicago hasn't sold out in some time due to bad ownership/management doesn't help. Ottawa is a very good team and has a strong fan base. Edmonton also, though it does has it's own problems with money.

    If you want to talk about teams that are losing money, why not mention the Carolina Hurricanes, Nashville Predators and Pittsburgh Penguins?

    Factor that the NHL is more or less a big honking mess and may not recover, a NHL team in OKC would not be a good idea.

    It's not that I wouldn't want to see the NHL here, it's more the fact that it wouldn't survive right now. I, more than anyone would understand, would love to see my beloved Red Wings play right here in OKC. I'm only being realistic though, and unfortunately right now a NHL team is not realistic.

  8. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    And I apologize, I said a couple instead of a few..I meant a few

  9. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I stand corrected. You are correct. Oakland has the NBA. My mistake. As much as I know about the Bay Area, I should have rememebred that one.

    The only thing I agree on with your thoughts about the NHL and Oklahoma City is the fact that with the lockout, the timing is not quite right. Give it a year or two and that will change.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    If someone thought that OKC could support a major league franchise, we'd have one. Bottom line -- if there's money to be made, people will try to make it.

    People shell out the money for OU tickets because they want to support a winning program. They're proud to be part of it. That's why they fill 85,000 seats every Saturday.

    An expansion NFL team? I have my doubts.

  11. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    In my opinion, if OKC were to have a successful major league sports team, I would think the NFL would have the best shot. I look in this board's Sports forums and the majority of the threads are football based. The majority of the media's coverage is about football in some form or another. Of most of the people I've talked to since moving here 2 years ago, they either don't care about sports in general or they care about, you guessed it, football. The only thing I think may be a problem here is media apathy towards the OKC sports that are here. When a newscast shows a highlight of a 7-5 Blazers game or when the oklahoman's sports page is 3 pages long, those are things that are frustrating to me. Maybe I got spoiled growing up in Detroit where they show a bit more than a goal on the news or when the Free Press or News has a good sized sports section that has articles on not just the local teams, but has decent sized articles of other teams, as opposed to the score and one liner of each game that the oklahoman has tucked away in some sidebar corner. I don't know. Maybe I'll stop rambling now.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I agree with Midtowner, if it was feasible in the near future, someone such as ...lets say um......Bob Funk would make it a reality. The best chance we have soon would be NHL or AFL.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I never went to a Wranglers game, but now am a season ticket holder to the Yard Dawgz. I understand that the Wranglers did fine here, but moved when presented with the opportunity to be in Austin instead of OKC. I guess they figured since Austin was a lot like OKC -- very football conscious with no NFL team, they'd be a good fit to the market, a much larger market.

    I still think we could get AFL 1 here. Unfortunately, I think that the new AFL2 team we have will do everything in its power to keep AFL 1 out of here like the Blazers did to prevent us from upgrading our hockey franchise to the IFL.

    The closest thing we have to a top-flight team is the Redhawks. Every other pro-team in town is at least third-tier.

    Major League Soccer was a possibility for Edmond for awhile, but they could never get an owner's group together. Too risky a proposition.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Yeah I forgot about the MLS but I hear it may still be in the works in 05 or 06.

  15. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    "I never went to a Wranglers game, but now am a season ticket holder to the Yard Dawgz. I understand that the Wranglers did fine here, but moved when presented with the opportunity to be in Austin instead of OKC. I guess they figured since Austin was a lot like OKC -- very football conscious with no NFL team, they'd be a good fit to the market, a much larger market. "

    No. The league took ownership of the team due to finacial problems with it caused by their time in Portland. Later, the league contracted four teams. The Wranglers were the last one to be contracted... The league did not want to lose it because it was one of the teams that drew a large crowd.

    Austin bought the naming rights from the league. As a result, although we are stuck with a demotion, the league has Oklahoma City on a short list for expansion into the majors. We would have already been granted another franchise, however, the problem is ownership. Funk apparantly did not want the bigs... Well, probably Lund.

  16. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    I personally feel that Lund isn't helping the Blazers at all with all of these "changes" being made with the OKC Blazers. Certainly hasn't helped their performance. Signing an ex-NHL player hasn't helped either. We're in last place!!!

    Anyhow, I thought that Bob Funk and Brad Lund would have been able to take Oklahoma City tot he next level in sports. I was wrong. They are too chicken to take that risk.

    However, it is also other cities who have pro teams that laugh anytime OKC has made an attempt to break into the pros. When we bid for an NHL team in 1997, a sports columnist for the Chicago Tribune said this about our city:

    "And Oklahoma City in the NHL??? Who says hockey better than a city full of people who have already lost their teeth?"

    I wrote a nasty letter to the paper, and never got a response. Perhaps I should have been more professional about what I said, but I was only 18 at the time, so I wrote what was on my mind. Chicago's paper deserved it.

  17. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    AMEN, Pulse! The comment by the Chicago newspaper, I had also heard that.

    Those are the very reasons Oklahoma City needs a major image and attitude makeover. Many people around the country feel that way.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    True, but Funk isnt a billionaire for no reason and Lund has money too. Its not that they arent afraid of taking risk, thats how they got their money. However, they spend tons of money to experts who analyze the feasibility of undertaking such a task. Bottom line is season ticket holders and corporate sponsorship with the minor league teams we have now. This is how the pros determine feasibility for the next step. We have the corporate backings but not enough season ticket holders. Look at the reasons every time we have made an attempt why it failed. This was a major factor.

  19. Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Quote Originally Posted by okcpulse
    ...However, it is also other cities who have pro teams that laugh anytime OKC has made an attempt to break into the pros. When we bid for an NHL team in 1997, a sports columnist for the Chicago Tribune said this about our city:

    "And Oklahoma City in the NHL??? Who says hockey better than a city full of people who have already lost their teeth?"

    I wrote a nasty letter to the paper, and never got a response. Perhaps I should have been more professional about what I said, but I was only 18 at the time, so I wrote what was on my mind. Chicago's paper deserved it.
    The thing you have to realize about Chicago is that it hasn't had good NHL team since the early `70s. In fact other than the Bulls in the 90's, they haven't had a good team since then. They are just bitter because the owner of the Blackhawks is a money-grubbing moron who doesn't care if they win or lose, as long as they make theirs.

  20. #20
    Sooner&RiceGrad Guest

    Default Re: Major League Franchise: Good or Bad For OKC???

    Good or bad?
    Absolutely. I think Oklahoma City needs a baseball franchise, they could just use the Bricktown Ballpark, it's top ranked.

    I think Tulsa needs an nfl team. This is because you get OKLAHOMA fans, AND ARKANSAS fans. Approximately 7.5 million fans, unserved by any pro teams at all. I don't think we need a pro hockey or basketball team yet however.

    Face it: Oklahoma is probably the richest state as football goes in the union. I don't know why the NFL thinks they are O.K. with just the Cowboys and Chiefs... teams with names that don't relate to their city nearly like they do with Oklahoma City. Something fishy could be up with that...

    Okies definately have the money to buy tickets as well. Their is no doubt. At all.

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