Which Original Six team would be relocated the soonest?

I know this is a real tough question as each of these teams have great fan numbers, great attendance numbers and great merchandise selling numbers, but still: Who would it be?

I would say the Red Wings because of Detroit being a bankrupt city but I don't even try to believe that it could happen.

10 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    None would be the only answer. It doesn't make sense at any level to destroy an iconic part of the history of the game but more than that all 6 teams have some of the best markets in the game. People love to point to the city of Detroit being broke and that is fair in the sense that the city has mismanaged its money. That has absolutely zero to do with its sports teams or business entities. Tickets are still at a premium both in cost and availability for Wings games in spite of playing in an old barn that doesn't offer the full ability to cash in on suites and other premium seating. But that will soon change...they have a shiny new arena in the works complete with what will prove to be very expensive seating options, many think they will get way too close to the cost of going to a game in Toronto. How is that possible if the city is broke? The Wings draw from what we refer to as the tri-county area where there are very wealthy suburbs and state wide appeal enough that fans make weekends of sports events in the city. Oh yea, they also draw very nicely from across the border, it is incredibly easy and convenient to use the tunnel or Embassador bridge and take in a game for our friends in Windsor (in fact they have a huge amount of season ticket holders from across the river). And the Illitch family will continue to run the franchise long after Mike passes, the 2 kids are deeply involved in the whole Olympic Entertainment venture and both are passionate about the Wings & Tigers. Just because some clowns ran the city proper into the ground doesn't mean the people from the suburbs and the folks from across the border wont continue to buy tickets no matter how much higher the cost once the new arena opens.

  • Snid
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    It won't be Chicago or Montreal. They are 1-2 in attendance most years followed by Detroit then Toronto. Detroit sells out more times than not even if people don't show up sometimes. Going over the attendance records for the last four years the Rangers and Bruins are way down compared to the other four teams with the Bruins being last for The Six 3 out of the 4 years.

    The Detroit Red Wings have one of the best owners in the NHL. He knows what he's doing and so do the people who surround him (mostly family). Mike Illitch believes in Detroit and is doing everything he can to make it a viable city. The Red Wings couldn't be in better hands. The fact that the city is bankrupt has absolutely nothing to do with the business that is the Detroit Red Wings (or Detroit Tigers). They even have plans for a new arena to replace the aged Joe Louis Arena.

    Sure Detroit went bankrupt but they are now probably in better shape than a lot of cities struggling to stay solvent.

    I don't see ANY of the Original Six moving ay time soon.

  • 7 years ago

    The answer is none of the above.

    The original six teams are in the top nine valued franchises in hockey today (courtesy of Forbes Magazine). The ninth on this list is the Detroit Red Wings at a value of $470MM. So to relocate the Red Wings one would have to buy it from Ilitch for that money, pay a relocation fee of about $100MM to the NHL and put it in an arena which will be acceptable to the NHL board.

    If I had that money and a place to play, why not buy the Sabres at half that money or the Blue Jackets at a third. Either would be an easier sell to the BoG.

  • 7 years ago

    I say that Toronto would be the last team to move if for some reason the NHL did a mass relocation. Toronto definitely has the biggest fan base out of the Original 6. I'd say it goes like this.

    1. Toronto

    2. Montreal

    3. Boston

    4. Chicago

    5. Detroit

    6. New York

    So, in general saying, the Rangers would be the first team to relocate if I was NHL commissioner. Then Detroit, and so on, if that was really necessary for some crazy reason

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  • 7 years ago

    Life goes on in Detroit. In fact there is whole artsy-fartsy crowd moving into to Detroit because, hey; rent is cheap. That the municipal government was mismanaged has nothing to do with the fundamentals. New York went through the same process not so long ago.

  • 7 years ago

    Chicago if we are to believe Forbes magazine....losing money while winning a Stanley Cup.


    However, I would agree with your assessment, Detroit is not a wealthy town. It could never happen but if more factories close etc etc....Pizza Pizza boy Illitch dies and whomever takes charge wants to sell it,,,,still never happen, just playing devil's advocate.

    Seriously though, Detroit has announced sell-outs with HUGE pockets of empty seats, even in playoff games. Part of the thing with the NHL is that they don't base attendance on turnstiles...just how many tickets are out there whether it be sold or given away.

    Source(s): Stevie- that is untrue. The Original 6 teams account for 30% of league revenues. The other 24 account for the other 70%
  • 7 years ago

    Detroit, bankrupt as ****, just approved a new 300 million dollar arena for the Red Wings, which is ironic because its money probably borrowed from other states.

  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    No original 6 team is going any where ... ever ... the NHL would NOT let it happen

    Don't forget .... on any given night 50% of the crowd in Detroit is from Ontario ... Windsor provides a lot of Detroit's fans

  • ULAM
    Lv 5
    7 years ago

    I would agree with you for the reason you gave. All six original franchises have large and loyal fan bases, but a decimated economy and the rising cost of seeing any professional sport could force a move in the long run.

  • Stevie
    Lv 6
    7 years ago

    Agreed with those saying none of them will move.

    All are strong markets with mature fan bases.

    All have or will have modern arenas. ( Counting MSG... )

    All are profitable, although financial creativity may produce

    paper losses.

    I have read that TOR, MTL, and NYR account for > 60% of league revenues.

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