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  #1   IP: 98.213.153.4
Old 07-27-2010, 10:37 PM
wasteland wasteland is offline
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Default Rockford Expansion

WIFR out of Rockford reported tonight that Joe Stefani, President and majority owner of the Rockford Foresters is in prelim talks with the Metrocentre about bringing a D-league team to the arena. He says he is looking for additional investors and a fair lease from the arena. He hopes to make a decision in the next 60-90 days with a possible start in time for 2011-2012 season. Stefani noted in a brief on camerea interview that because the NBA picks up salaries and workmans comp it makes the most sense
fianicially to go to the D-league.

A basketball team hasn't called the metrocentre home since the Rockford Lightning of the CBA folded in 2006.

WHile it would be great to get a d=league team, I don't see it being a major draw. The Lightning lost money year after year and stuck around for so long because of a great owner, the late Wayne Tempe. Hey, it would be great to get Daleo back on the sidelines and off the ball diamond as well. Right NSF?
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  #2   IP: 75.3.66.59
Old 07-28-2010, 03:05 PM
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Ken, Steelheads fan Ken, Steelheads fan is offline
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Never say never, but the D-League would NEVER work in Rockford. The Metrocentre actually owns the IceHogs hockey team and would NEVER give a competing fall/winter team good dates. Heck, the CBA Lightning couldn't get good dates BEFORE the Metrocentre took over the IceHogs. Rockford is a hockey town now.

Also, the timing is all wrong. Baseball is almost recession proof (although attendance is down nationwide), but Rockford currently has the highest unemployment rate in the state of Illinois. The IceHogs can't make a profit. The few Rockford fans who didn't convert to hockey are more likely to put food on the table than buy basketball tickets. A D-League team wouldn't make a profit either.
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  #3   IP: 99.111.219.81
Old 07-28-2010, 03:20 PM
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Minor league baseball attendance as a whole is up this year, with 11 of 15 affiliated leagues seeing gains this season. Rockford looks to be off about 79 fans per game from last season.
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  #4   IP: 75.3.66.59
Old 07-28-2010, 04:49 PM
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Yep, I'm still hung-up on last year when 81% of all minor league baseball was down. It's up this year...except in Gary where things are backwards. Record attendance last year and down THIS year.
//www.oursportscentral.com/boar...ad.php?t=17640

Elkhart is the Rockford of Indiana. Worst unemployment rate in the state of Indiana. Of course, there's talk of fall/winter basketball coming there too. Same everything. Same competition from another fall/winter sport, except in Elkhart the competition is high school basketball.
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  #5   IP: 98.213.153.4
Old 07-28-2010, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken, Steelheads fan View Post
Never say never, but the D-League would NEVER work in Rockford. The Metrocentre actually owns the IceHogs hockey team and would NEVER give a competing fall/winter team good dates. Heck, the CBA Lightning couldn't get good dates BEFORE the Metrocentre took over the IceHogs. Rockford is a hockey town now.

Also, the timing is all wrong. Baseball is almost recession proof (although attendance is down nationwide), but Rockford currently has the highest unemployment rate in the state of Illinois. The IceHogs can't make a profit. The few Rockford fans who didn't convert to hockey are more likely to put food on the table than buy basketball tickets. A D-League team wouldn't make a profit either.
Technicially, the city of Rockford (and the tax payers) owns the Icehogs.The MetroCentre Authority that bought the team is actually part of the city. Many here locally are wanting the city to explore selling the team since lay-offs and cuts in all city services are on the chopping block.

And do the make a profit? The jury is still out on that. I've been told that people within the organization claim a profit of around the 100k, but it's hard to tell because the Icehogs are grouped all together with all the other events at the Metrocentre when figuring to see if the arena is making or losing money.

Coming soon, management of the arena is going to be outsourced to firm that specializes in that. Good move imo.

But I agree D-League wouldn't work. The Rockdford Fury played at Rockford College and they drew around 400 a game/

I still do miss the Lightning days. Those games were alot of fun.
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  #6   IP: 74.77.132.201
Old 07-29-2010, 12:16 AM
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I wonder if Rockford comes in potentially in 2011-12 if that is the date that potential Buffalo to the d-league group who ever they are would be coming in then too? Meaning Buffalo sits out 2010-11 from minor league basketball to set everything up for a start in 2011-12 just wondering? Like a D-League expansion pair Rockford and Buffalo. Anyone hear anymore about Buffalo to the D-League? Let's Go Buffalo
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  #7   IP: 173.165.9.166
Old 07-29-2010, 06:43 PM
not so fast not so fast is offline
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First of all, the D-league doesn't care about attendance that much. But If you put a team in Rockford, with the NBA behind the team, and you put coach Daleo on the sideline, It will be a hugh sucess in Rockford.

And they will eventually draw good crowds, and I think you will see good sponsors on board as well. In spite of the economy, there is enough people there to support a good solid basketball team. Geez ken, they don't play 7 nights a week, and in spite of the economy, people would love to see the next NBA call ups, just like they did in Rockford for 15 years.

One or two basketball tickets will not keep your family from eating or cause them any more financial hardship,.

Even if you poor or struggling, you still need an outlet of somekind. And for many seeing maybe the next Derek Rose might just be that outlet.
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  #8   IP: 75.3.66.59
Old 07-29-2010, 07:33 PM
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not so fast,
Forget Rockford and big time fall/winter basketball. It's not going to happen. You're living in the past. A team won't survive without good dates. The city of Rockford isn't going to work against the hockey team it owns. Even if the city sells the team, the new owners aren't likely to give up their dates. Plus, the whole D-League/Rockford thing is a pipe-dream of Joe Stefani. I read the article (somewhere). He doesn't have any money. He's looking for investors. Heck, just about everyone in the country is looking for investors about now. The country is broke.

Buffalo Super Fan,
Forget Rockford. If anything happens anywhere near Chicago with the D-League, it will probably happen in Hoffman Estates, IL at the Sears Center. It's a new place, but in terrible financial shape because they have had so many problems finding tenants. Rockford or Hoffman Estates, I guess it shouldn't matter to you as long as there was a team to pair-up with Buffalo (...and no, I haven't heard about a team for Buffalo). Personally, I don't think a team would work at the Sears Center either. I can't see fans braving that traffic for minor league basketball...well, maybe not so fast would.
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  #9   IP: 74.77.132.201
Old 07-30-2010, 02:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken, Steelheads fan View Post
not so fast,
Forget Rockford and big time fall/winter basketball. It's not going to happen. You're living in the past. A team won't survive without good dates. The city of Rockford isn't going to work against the hockey team it owns. Even if the city sells the team, the new owners aren't likely to give up their dates. Plus, the whole D-League/Rockford thing is a pipe-dream of Joe Stefani. I read the article (somewhere). He doesn't have any money. He's looking for investors. Heck, just about everyone in the country is looking for investors about now. The country is broke.

Buffalo Super Fan,
Forget Rockford. If anything happens anywhere near Chicago with the D-League, it will probably happen in Hoffman Estates, IL at the Sears Center. It's a new place, but in terrible financial shape because they have had so many problems finding tenants. Rockford or Hoffman Estates, I guess it shouldn't matter to you as long as there was a team to pair-up with Buffalo (...and no, I haven't heard about a team for Buffalo). Personally, I don't think a team would work at the Sears Center either. I can't see fans braving that traffic for minor league basketball...well, maybe not so fast would.
Ken I forgot Rockford for D-League after seeing them as a disaster in the MISL indoor soccer the Rockford Rampage MISL. Wow the MISL has hit rock bottom in my opinion if Rockford is passing for MISL these days. I remember when the original MISL had a team in Buffalo the Buffalo Stallions MISL I was a huge fan of them as a kid. Then the NPSL indoor soccer Buffalo Blizzard NPSL came to town in the 1993. I owned Buffalo Blizzard NPSL season tickets for the nine years they were here and never did Buffalo draw what is passing for MISL indoor soccer in Rockford even in the Buffalo Blizzard's last year when the team was failing drawing only 4,000 plus.

Ken see the thing with Buffalo if the rumored group is able to get in the D-League team it might possiblely work in Buffalo. Because the Buffalo Sabres NHL have over 14,000 season ticket holders caped already. The Buffalo Sabres NHL is basically almost soldout out for the year at HSBC Arena.

I know that is apples and oranges Ken but my point is there is a market here. Buffalo isn't like Rockford I wish I had AHL hockey with those cheap ticket prices to buy tickets to games too because I love sports live. The Buffalo Sabres ticket cost money not everyone can afford that I know I am reduce to watching on tv now other then a game or two once in a while because season tickets are beyond me the NHL outpriced me personally years ago. The Buffalo Sabres have gold and silver etc games look at our prices there high it isn't like AHL hockey prices.

If I could even get a season Buffalo Sabres NHL ticket which you can't there is a waiting list in Buffalo called Blue and Gold I think that is the name of the list I never went there because the NHL outpriced me like I said. That is why I have season tickets to the Buffalo Bandits NLL because it is affordable at $20.

If the D-League is done right in Buffalo it has a chance because there aren't tickets available for the Buffalo Sabres NHL that is one of the reasons why the Buffalo Bandits NLL average over 16,000 in 2010. If the D-League team can get a good rent lease at UB Alumni Arena or Buffalo State Sports Arena or the Flick Center at ECC City the Buffalo D-League has a chance in my opinion.

The first Buffalo Rapids ABA game ever in Buffalo drew over 3,000 packed house I was there then the owner ran away and the rest is history as you know Ken. If Buffalo gets a good owner with D-League with the NBA behind it then it has a chance in Buffalo but again even with Buffalo nothing is guaranteed as you know Ken. Ken you mentioned traffic for Chicago D-League that is the another positive for Buffalo D-League what traffic everything is 20 minutes and your there in Buffalo which helps in my opinion with attendance because there isn't a battle with traffic just snow which I am used to after living here for 42 years plus in Buffalo. Let's Go Buffalo
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Last edited by Buffalo Super Fan; 07-30-2010 at 02:18 AM.
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  #10   IP: 24.248.161.158
Old 07-30-2010, 11:28 PM
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I don't know how well Rockford would do (they would need a Bulls affiliation to have any chance of success). But I do have the perfect team name:
(drum roll please)

THE ROCKFORD FILES

(Still has one of the greatest opening themes of all time)
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