“Embarrassing Your League” : NHL Fans Saddened After Hockey Legend Shares a Cryptic Post on 33rd and 34th NHL Franchises

Published 03/06/2023, 9:49 AM EST

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Recently, a Twitter post by former ice hockey player Kevin Weekes left thousands of NHL fans disheartened. The post reported that the 33rd and 34th new franchises will be Houston Aeros and Atlanta Thrashers. While some fans suggested that the NHL should expand ice hockey in other Canadian cities, other fans said that 32 teams were enough.

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A fan also made an intriguing comment about the NHL’s real motive to expand in Atlanta. So what was in Weekes’ post that made fans react strongly, gaining 1 million views?

Intriguing reports of the 33rd and 34th NHL franchises 

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Weekes reshared a shocking Twitter post from the Twitter account NHL to Houston. The tweet not only reported that the Houston Aeros and Atlanta Thrashers will be the new teams, but also shared an interesting peek into their logos. While the Houston Aeros logo was blue, the Atlanta Thrashers logo had colors of orange and dark blue. 

 

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Weekes also tagged popular news outlets such as ESPN, NHL, NHL Network, DK Sportsbook (DraftKings Sportsbook) and TSN Hockey, apparently asking them to verify the news. The former ice hockey goaltender also captioned his post with two emojis of two eyes wide open in surprise and a face with the mouth zipped, indicating he couldn’t comment on the news. Responding to this post, NHL fans gave blunt and unexpected opinions. 

NHL Fans divided and unable to digest the shocking report of two new franchises 

A fan commented, “34 teams is brutal. Continuing to ignore starving northern communities and Canadian markets is brutal. But this league is brutal. Most Southern US teams that can be revenue drags because the focus is on football and college sports. Cool.” 

Afterwards, a fan made a wild suggestion. “Or here’s an idea instead of embarrassing your league every year with Arizona playing in college rinks and a glorified farm team for top picks you just move them to a deserving city.”  Agreeing with this opinion, another fan wrote, “No to expansion, yes to relocation.” 

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Post this, some fans also expressed annoyance at the fact that Atlanta was getting a third chance due to the new franchise. A fan posted, “Atlanta has had two teams and both failed in hilarious ways. I’m down for Houston but why not Quebec, or Milwaukee or KC? If we’re giving out 2nd and 3rd chances why not Hartford? So many better options than Atlanta.”  A fan also suggested, “How about a team in Saskatchewan and another in either Newfoundland or Nova Scotia? Bet you’d have sellouts every game.”  Clearly, some fans think that the NHL can expand in different cities with new teams. 

Later, another fan explained,  “A lot of fans not seeing the bigger picture here…The NHL wants the Atlanta market. Its BIG $$$ compared to Quebec or Hartford and some of the smaller cities listed. The NHL knows what the Atlanta spirit did to the thrashers and its all dependent on ownership.” Giving a completely different opinion from this, a fan wrote, “I think 32 is enough. Too many teams dilute the product.” This opinion was supported by many fans who felt the same. 

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Weekes’s post has stirred a strong debate about whether there is a need for more new NHL franchises. Do you think the NHL should focus on perfecting the current NHL teams instead of expanding with new NHL franchises? Share your opinions in the comments section. 

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Written by:

Priya Hinduja

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Priya Hinduja is a US Sports author for EssentiallySports. Post pursuing her Master's Degree in English, she worked as an English language trainer at Osmos Club and also dabbled with marketing at Debugee Technologies Pvt Ltd for a year. With a keen interest in playing chess and badminton in her leisure time, she also follows the activities of Michael Phelps, whose story motivates and inspires her.
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Edited by:

Anupama Ghosh

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