Thursday, February 24, 2005


NHL Arenas: Get Out of Town!

One of my pals from Czechia, David (ada), posed an interesting question to me tonight:

"Which NHL teams have arenas that are 'out of town'?"

While the Vancouver Canucks and Toronto Maple Leafs both play in arenas that are in the core of their respective downtowns and near transit hubs, other NHL clubs require you to take a long trip to go watch some hockey.

I know of some of them, but I am probably missing some. Unless you are a real hockey trivia buff, or you've been to these places, it would be hard to know exactly where they are.

Here are the ones we know about. If you have any to add, please feel free to comment.

Ottawa Senators - Kanata, Ontario - There were big dreams of building this place into a new 'Silicon Valley' until the crashed brought people back into reality. I don't know what Kanata is like these days, but I know that the location isn't very central.

Phoenix Coyotes - Glendale, Arizona. This is one place I've been to, and it takes about 30 minutes to drive out there (and I was staying in the far western part of Phoenix). Since many Coyotes fans come from the more affluent eastern part of Phoenix or Scottsdale, it would take them up to an hour to drive there in some instances.

Like Kanata, the arena was built in a rather empty place in hopes that the upcoming development would drive the value of the team/land/etc up and up. Well, the development in that part of Glendale is very slow. The only thing surrounding the America West Arena is a big parking lot, sand, and plenty of prickly cactus plants.

New Jersey Devils - East Rutherford, NJ. The Devils play in the middle of a swamp and it's no wonder why they were so anxious to get a new arena.

Florida Panthers - The Panthers play in Sunrise, which is a long way from Miami and quite a distance from Fort Lauderdale, the two major centres in the region.

Dallas Stars - Duncanville, TX - I am not sure just how long it would take to get there from Dallas, but it appears to be quite a distance away according to this map.

So, I have 4 for sure and 1 other possiblity. I'd love to hear of any others that are not near the city center or in the city the team is named for. (Duncanville Stars would sound rather wimpy)

The New York Islanders, named for the state, not the city, play on Long Island, where it's mainly just suburbs with various densities (although rarely not dense, unless you head out into eastern Suffolk County). Nassau Coliseum is in Uniondale on Hempstead Turnpike, which is busy, but no "city" in comparison to most other NHL cities.
The RBC Center is in Raleigh, but it's out on the west edge of Raleigh (about a half-mile from where I work)--which is a good thing, because if it was in downtown Raleigh the traffic would be a freaking nightmare.
The Dallas Stars do not play in Duncanville. The American Airlines Center is the home for the Dallas Stars and is located in the heart of downtown Dallas, Texas.

The Duncanville Dr. Pepper Starscenter you have mapped is one of many local rinks with the Stars name attached to it.
Thanks for the feedback, guys and gal.

I had no idea about the Stars... I wonder why they would give a local arena such a name. When they were building the new arena there, I heard it would be the Starscenter.

As for the least they play on the ISLAND :)...but Long Island looks to be bigger than I ever thought

Canes - Well they used to be really far out of town. Technically, though, they were still in sweet 'Carolina' :)
San Jose Sharks are at the HP Pavilion, formerly known as the San Jose Arena. It is located just on the outskirts of downtown San Jose, walking distance from a lot of public transportation.
the only arena Ive visited is St.Petes Times Forum in Tampa and I assume although it is not in the downtown, still quite in the town.

here in czech republic old Stvanice in Prague and ice rinks in Ceske Budejovice and Beroun are on islands. Ice rink in Trebic is in the hill, on one side ground is on ice level, on the other upper row of the bowl is near ground level. almost all arenas are reachable within 20 minutes in the town except Prague ones and CEZ Arena in Ostrava, which is the only real arena here on the suburbs.

The New Jersey Devils just announced that they're building a new arena out by their International Airport in Newark, NJ.
The Devils may play in a swamp, but it's a swamp that's highly developed and centrally located among the most densely populated counties of North Jersey, at or near the junction of just about every major NJ highway, and only six or seven miles from Madison Square Garden (though these are six or seven high quality miles, not "Next Exit 6 Miles" miles). Their new arena will be located not by Newark Airport, but in downtown Newark, New Jersey's most populous city (not that downtown Newark is any more or less inviting than the swamp they currently play in, but at least there is a train station there).
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