NLL cities: What is, was and shall be
This week in the National Lacrosse League player poll, we checked in with the guys to ask them about the cities in which the NLL has set up shop (including those it has since departed), and any potential destinations for new franchises that could be fixtures in the league for the long run.
Check out which cities the players believe would support an expansion or relocated franchise, which they would like to see back in the loop, and which current team should act as a blueprint for any future endeavors.
1. What city do you think would best support an expansion or relocated NLL franchise?
Vancouver, British Columbia -- 44 percent
Dallas -- 16 percent
Montreal -- 13 percent
Seattle -- 9 percent
Las Vegas -- 7 percent
Other -- 5 percent
Pittsburgh -- 4 percent
Sunrise, Fla. -- 2 percent
Atlanta -- 0 percent
Hamilton, Ontario -- 0 percent
Other answers included: None of the above, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Colorado Springs, Colo., Victoria, British Columbia
"Fun in the sun." -- on Sunrise, Fla.
"Why bother putting a team in any other state?" -- on Colorado Springs
"If they'd allow betting on games, Las Vegas."
"Sports town, great facility, would go well with hockey and basketball fans. Why aren't we there already?" -- on Dallas
"We need to stabilize the existing troubled franchises. The above markets need to be supported by an NHL owner for it to work."
"Don't really think there should be any expansion. Just relocation."
"Get the right people involved and market the team properly." -- on Vancouver
"Get Mark Cuban and go!" -- on Dallas
"With all of the B.C. players throughout the league and the large concentration of youth teams in the area, Vancouver seems like a no-brainer."
2. If you could pick one former NLL/MILL city, which would you grant a second chance with a new franchise?
Vancouver -- 38 percent
Montreal -- 27 percent
Detroit -- 11 percent
None of them -- 9 percent
Baltimore -- 7 percent
Columbus, Ohio -- 4 percent
Ottawa -- 2 percent
Hoffman Estates, Ill. -- 1 percent
Other -- 1 percent
Anaheim, Calif. -- 0 percent
Glendale, Ariz. -- 0 percent
Other answers included: Downtown Chicago.
"Could you imagine playing the Turbos? Unreal!"
"With a 49 percent illiteracy rate among adults in the city, they could easily be duped into supporting the team. If they could get some jobs in demolition I mean, because they could blow up all the car plants that aren't needed. Screw it. Detroit is a very bad idea!"
"Would love to visit [Montreal]. Heard great things. Detroit probably would have the best chance to succeed though."
"They had a good fan base, great atmosphere, and who doesn't want to postgame in Montreal?"
"It was a hit there last time. [Owner Brad] Watters picked the wrong city when he chose Ottawa over Montreal."
"Love 'The Thunderdome'!" -- on Baltimore
"Wouldn't mind seeing Detroit again, but economy probably wouldn't give this franchise a chance there."
3. What current NLL franchise would you use as a blueprint for any future NLL franchises?
Colorado Mammoth -- 66 percent
Buffalo Bandits -- 10 percent
Boston Blazers -- 8 percent
Toronto Rock -- 6 percent
Minnesota Swarm -- 5 percent
Philadelphia Wings -- 4 percent
San Jose Stealth -- 1 percent
Calgary Roughnecks -- 0 percent
Edmonton Rush -- 0 percent
New York Titans -- 0 percent
Portland LumberJax -- 0 percent
Rochester Knighthawks -- 0 percent
"Two words: SOLD OUT!" -- on Colorado
"Is this really a question that needs to be answered? It is pretty obvious." -- on Colorado
"It is awesome how full that arena always is!" -- on Denver's Pepsi Center
"One of the longest-standing franchises that has seen highs and lows. They are perfect in my mind!" -- on Buffalo
"Stan is the man!" -- on Stan Kroenke, Mammoth owner
"Having a high number of players who live in the Boston area is beneficial for the visibility of the team and its players, and builds off-field team chemistry immediately."
Any opinions on where the league should be searching to plant new or relocated franchises? Hit the boards and let us know.
Pete Tutka is a former NLL scout and a longtime Inside Lacrosse contributor. E-mail him at email@example.com.
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