I just don’t think you have the arena infrastructure in place to launch such a league.
First of all, it can’t get into the right markets. Unlike the WHA (who could get into spots like Western Canada and Ottawa/Quebec), there’s nowhere for these new clubs to go. Your only real option is Hamilton (depending on the various arena agreements the clubs have). I mean there are a couple of other options like London and Quebec City (old Colisee), but I just don’t think those are enough.
Not only that, but the WHA had the benefit of paying players between 30-150k each, a rival league would need to spend into the millions.
After the jump, I delve into the first of his criticisms - arena infrastructure and markets.
While most arenas are tied into NHL leases (another dimension of muni-funded arenas), there are a number of compatible arenas available to a second league. They are not suited to compete in the NHL, but they may be compatible with a second league. And while dawgbone doesn't see new markets for the new league, I believe the available arenas are located in markets that could support teams in a second league. Below is a list of 18 markets, their hockey venue and seating capacity for hockey:
|Cincinnati||U.S. Bank Arena||14,453|
|Columbus||Value City Arena||17,500|
|Indianapolis||Market Square Arena||15,993|
|Kansas City||Sprint Center||17,544|
|New York||Barclays Center||14,500|
|Saskatoon||Credit Union Centre||15,195|
The buildings are varied as some are quite new with all of the amenities of an NHL arena, while some are outdated or quite small. But the potential exists - there are available facilities and markets. Given these markets, is the pool of potential owners large enough to create and maintain a competitive and financially viable league?