With the Vegas Golden Knights succeeding and Seattle on the verge of getting an expansion team, talk of another new city getting a team has surfaced.
It’s not official yet, but Seattle is on the verge of being awarded an NHL franchise once Sept. rolls around. If they are approved by the NHL’s Board of Governors it will become the 32nd member of the NHL and join the Western Conference, leaving Quebec City without an NHL team.
Quebec has been longing for an NHL team since its beloved Nordiques moved to Colorado (Avalanche) after the 1994-95 regular season. The city has pushed hard to receive the bid even prior to the Seattle talks and around the same time Vegas won its bid to join the league (2016).
Now, most would think that Quebec hockey would eventually come next in the foreseeable future once Seattle was up and running. However, that may not be the case.
Boston Bruins Owner Jeremy Jacobs had some interesting comments earlier today during a postseason press conference in Beantown on which city could receive an NHL expansion bid after Seattle and why Quebec won’t.
One quote from Jacobs stood out most:
“Quebec is challenged, OK, I’m going to put it nicely. They’re challenged,” Jacobs said. “Look at the income base and the population base and there probably isn’t a smaller market, so they’re going to really have to distinguish themselves in some other way, I would think.”
He may have been able to ‘put it nicer,’ no?
Jacobs then proceeded to compare Quebec’s situation to Houston, Texas, of all cities, as if he knows something that the rest of us don’t (2:40).
Would hockey be a good fit in Houston?
10 or 20 years ago, no.
I do also understand that Quebec City would make for an amazing atmosphere like Winnipeg, but there are good reasons to award Houston a hockey team.
— Tilman Fertitta (@TilmanJFertitta) November 16, 2017
Houston has appeared to have really transformed into quite the sports town with the rise and recent success for all three of its major teams with the Astros, Rockets, and Texans.
After seeing what Vegas has not only been able to achieve on the ice but away from the ice with its large and supportive fan base – Houston would gladly welcome an NHL team. Plus, look to one-up a potential rival city in the making.
Speaking of rivalry…adding a second NHL team to the state of Texas would create an uncanny rivalry down south that NHL has never quite witnessed. Imagine an NHL rivalry between the Dallas Stars and Houston (TBD), while both teams are in the same conference and division.
Dallas has seemed to have its ups and downs with the Stars, but from the looks of it – Dallas has grown to re-embrace their Stars again. Houston is a largely populated city, larger than Dallas, and its former American Hockey League (AHL) team, Houston Aeros (1994-2013), did well attendance when the team played out of the Toyota Center (NBA’s Houston Rockets).
Plus, the league doesn’t have to worry about hockey not working in the south anymore, as the Atlanta Days are a thing well in the past.
Houston, we need a hockey team.
See recent tweets from fans talking about Houston possible receiving an NHL team, here.