Houston Aeros 1994-2013: Thank you for all the great memories and two decades of great hockey and entertainment.

Friday, November 20, 2009

What the hell is going on in San Antonio?

Dave Eminian of the Peoria Journal-Star reports today that the Anaheim Mighty Ducks have apparently ended their affiliation with the Rampage

This is terrible news for a San Antonio team that has lost nine straight games and has fallen to last place in the division. 

Three players were re-assigned to the Toronto Marlies and another to an ECHL team. 
San Antonio, reportedly, signed four ECHL guys to fill that void. The following is straight from the Peoria article:

"It also appears as though NHL Anaheim has pulled its affiliation with San Antonio.

Phoenix is San Antonio’s NHL parent club. But Anaheim had no AHL farm this season, and worked out a deal with Phoenix to assign players to San Antonio.

On Tuesday, Anaheim abruptly pulled out left wing Matt Beleskey and right wing Troy Bodie — two very good players — and defenseman Brett Festerling and sent them all to AHL Toronto. A fourth player, Ryan Donally, was sent to ECHL Bakersfield.

Whether Anaheim was unhappy with the ice time its players received, or the direction of the San Antonio team — or both — was unclear."


Lax Guy said...

I heard a pretty strong rumor that San Antonio will be moving next year - to Des Moines. Supposedly they will be the Chops part deux but will remain affiliated with a team in KC. The early word is that Phoenix will be the KC team.

John Royal said...

@Lax Guy: Haven't you been reading the fearmongers over here? Don't you know that the Wild have purposefully tried to destroy the Aeros this year so that nobody will come to the games and thus the Wild can move the Aeros to Des Moines?

I do seem to recall reading something about the Rampage earlier this year. I'll see if I can dig up something.

ICEVET said...

Notwithstanding the rumor mill, the fact is that the Spurs Sports & Entertainment organization (SSE) owns the Rampage, together with the SA Spurs, Silver Stars and Austin Toros (NBA development league), all 4 professional sports franchises of which are tied to the ATT Center, opened in 2002. SSE just happens to be controlled by the Family of Peter Holt, great-grandson of Benjamin Holt (inventor of the proto-type Caterpillar Tractor) and owner of the largest Caterpillar dealership in the United States. In short, deep-pockets control the Rampage's future.

Almost every serious sports fan knows that the Spurs (winning pct over .700 during the 12-year Tim Duncan era) is one of the top 3 US sports franchises (ESPN Survey), with 4 NBA titles during that stretch. Few comparable winning cultures can be found in US sports.

Finally, SSE (with over 200 full-time employees) has managed the day-day operations at the ATT Center (since 2002) and previous team venues (since 1996). Given SSE's business plan, track record and deep pockets, it is highly unlikely for Mr. Holt and his Board to sell and/or relocate the Rampage outside of San Antonio in the near future.

Forecheck said...

John -

That sounds like the script of the 80s (?) movie "Major League".

Of course didn't Cleveland (the team in the movie) go to the World Series at the end?

How about an update on the 'Yotes bankruptcy situation? Haven't heard anything in a while.

To contribute to the rumor mill, after the Wild move the Aeros to Des Moines to get the franchises closer and reduce costs (plus fulfill the AHL agreement to have a team in Des Moines)you are certainly aware tat the Rampage will move to Houston to capture the 30-40% higher attendance....at least that's what a little birdie told me....

John Royal said...

FC, sorry about that. NHL owns the team due to b-ruptcy. Judge ruled that he couldn't force the NHL to take Balsille and NHL had only bid. They're currently trying to find a buyer.

ICEVET said...

Forecheck: with all due respect, your "contribution to the rumor mill" completely ignores the facts and where the money is and will be.

First, a decision by the deep-pocket SSE group to sell and/or relocate the Rampage is totally incompatible with its current ATT-centric Business Plan and, most certainly, not be driven by de-minimus (incremental) revenue considerations. SSE's most likely response to the current Rampage situation will be a search for a "quality" netminder (underway and the most urgent need), minor adjustments to its coaching staff and firming-up next-year's affiliations. This is what you might expect from "Smart Money".

Second, with regard to the potential of an Aeros relocation, T3I has confirmed, in the past, that the Aeros have several years left on their Toyota Center lease agreement with Mr. Alexander (termination of which would be quite onerous to the WILD cash flow, which seems to have many other pressure points, at this time).

The math may not be as fuzzy as your little birdie suggests. Go Aeros!!!