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Canucks and Beyond

“Canucks are on Their Own”

Earlier today, AHL president Dave Andrews released a statement on the Manitoba Moose, and left the future of the team as an open issue with this remark: “The future of the Manitoba AHL franchise will be determined in the weeks ahead, and we look forward to Winnipeg’s NHL club developing its top prospects in the AHL.”

But later in the day, Patrick Williams of The Hockey News has tweeted this:

Wherever the Moose go, they will be the NHL Winnipeg club’s new AHL affiliate. Canucks are on their own for a new affiliation.

Maybe I’m the only one who didn’t know this, but that caught me by surprise.

I realize the Vancouver Canucks were likely to lose their affiliation with the Moose—especially if they end up moving to the east coast, as has been widely suggested—but I didn’t expect that an affiliation with the new Winnipeg Jets/Mosquitos/Moose/Wheaties team was considered a pro forma certainty.

And in all of this, what’s to become of the Chicago Wolves, the Atlanta Thrashers AHL affiliate? (Just wondering. And I imagine a whole lot of Wolves fans would like to know, too.)

All of this, incidentally, reminds me of a story that came out a couple years ago, where talk was that the Vancouver Canucks were thinking of moving their AHL interests away from Manitoba over to Abbotsford. Specifically, to the Abbotsford Heat, currently the Calgary Flames AHL affiliate.

Apparently that possibility is being floated again, though the Calgary Flames President and CEO Ken King denied last week that it’s something that’s likely to happen.

Still, it seems there’s a lot of re-shuffling going on at the AHL level this year that’s going to have a significant impact on their players, as well as the NHL as a whole.



Filed in: manitoba moose, vancouver canucks, | Canucks and Beyond | Permalink


Tapeleg's avatar

With the old Thrashers / new Winnipeg team ditching their old AHL affiliation, that opens up an affiliation with….

wait for it….



just thought you would like to know that.

Posted by Tapeleg on 06/01/11 at 02:40 AM ET

Tapeleg's avatar

Oh, you knew that?  Did you know that it’s really FUNNY?

Posted by Tapeleg on 06/01/11 at 02:40 AM ET


The affiliation between the Wolves and the Thrashers was already scheduled to end at the end of the season even if the sale to Winnipeg hadn’t happened.

Posted by Susan on 06/01/11 at 02:41 AM ET

Alanah McGinley's avatar

Tapeleg—Well,  I knew it, but why is it so funny? Did you think I had something against the Wolves for some reason? Should I?!

Susan—Thanks for that. I wasn’t aware of the terms of that arrangement. Definitely another piece of the puzzle for me to keep in mind as things get sorted out.

Posted by Alanah McGinley from British Columbia on 06/01/11 at 02:48 AM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

The Wolves are one of the highest attendance teams in the AHL.  They have done this by competing every year.  They competed largely by neglecting the Atlanta Thrashers “prospects” (the boys) and playing 30 year old veteran AHLers (men) in their place. afterall, the men should beat the boys most days.  The Wolves won the 2008 Calder Cup and they did so with a roster that included nobody who made an impact on the Thrashers since then. 

The Canucks affiliate in Manitoba has also been a good team.  They have done so while producing NHL prospects, so the Wolves might be willing to change direction with the Canucks, but it would be a significant direction change and that likely will include growing pains along the way even in a best case.

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 06/01/11 at 03:29 AM ET

Luongo-is-my-hero's avatar

it said on cbc’s thenational today that the moose would be ending their affiliation with the canucks, as true north is going to be moving them to st.john’s and using the moose as their farm team.

Posted by Luongo-is-my-hero on 06/01/11 at 04:46 AM ET


Now this may be a bit radical (and probably cost the organisation a few bucks)... but why not buy another AHL team, and move them to Seattle? KeyArena seats 11k for hockey, which is enough for an AHL team, and doesn’t currently have a hockey team (the T’birds play out in the sticks). Seattle is perfectly located for Vancouver, and provides a second team out west to work with Abbotsford. Plus there’s huge potential in harnessing the Seattle market, which could easily become part of the Canucks fanbase. Makes more sense than affiliating with the Wolves anyway.

Posted by fcjbencard on 06/01/11 at 09:56 AM ET

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About Canucks and Beyond

Alanah McGinley has been blogging hockey since 2003 (with a notable gap in time through 2010, kicking it with new baby Lucy while living knee-deep in chaos while reading "parenting for complete idiots" during every spare minute) sharing opinions, rants and not-so-deep thoughts with anyone who will listen.

In addition to writing Canucks & Beyond and helping manage Kukla's Korner, Alanah was one of the founders and co-hosts of The Crazy Canucks Podcast. She has contributed pieces to FoxSports.com and the New York Times Slapshot blog, as well as other stray destinations in cyberspace.

So that's me. Who the hell are you? smile

Email: am@kuklaskorner.com

Alanah's Twitter: [@alanah1]