July 18, 2004

WHA Draft: The WHA held its free agent draft yesterday and its amateur draft today. Simon Gagne was the top free agent pick while 17 year old Sidney Crosby was the first amateur taken. I wonder how many of the players who were selected in either draft would actually play in the WHA, assuming any WHA games are played at all.

posted by Stan Fields to hockey at 05:40 PM - 6 comments

I almost forgot about the players chosen as franchise draft exemptions.

posted by Stan Fields at 05:46 PM on July 18, 2004

Wher are they going to place that Founder's franchise? Do they know yet? I suspect some city might be interested in, y'know, buying season's tickets. Or is this going to be an Expos-type situation, where they basically barnstorm for awhile. (And what a throwback idea that'd be.)

posted by chicobangs at 12:35 PM on July 19, 2004

According to this article Orlando and Jacksonville were part of the WHA for 9 days in June. Also, Hamilton and Toronto still don't have lease agreements with their arenas. The WHA website lists Birmingham, Cincinnati, Minneapolis, Montreal, Phoenix, Arizona and Toledo as prospective future franchises.

posted by Stan Fields at 02:03 PM on July 19, 2004

Oops, obviously Phoenix is in Arizona

posted by Stan Fields at 02:08 PM on July 19, 2004

This league is predicated on the idea of the NHL folding. That's the only way it lasts more than one season. The AHL won't merge with them (what's in it for them?) and as soon as the lockout is over, the WHA will lose most of its players. Bobby Hull must have picked up a crack habit since he hung up the skates.

posted by Succa at 02:31 PM on July 19, 2004

I can't believe some of things I have heard about this league. The Detroit franchise is supposed to play in the Pontiac Silverdome. Can you imagine how empty the place will look with hockey in it? How do the expect a franchise to compete with the Red Wings? They also are considering Toledo? Where in the hell are they going to play at in Toledo? They have a very small minor league rink but that's it. I can't believe Mr. Hull thinks they can take the NHL's market over. He had better hope this lock out happens or there will not be a WHA.

posted by bluejacketsfan at 10:07 AM on July 21, 2004

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