It’s a sad day for hockey in Texas, as Stephen Meserve pointed out on his Texas Stars blog, Hundred Degree Hockey (good site to bookmark, by the way), the Houston Aeros are likely leaving Texas and headed for Iowa.
Aeros Leaving Houston, Star-Tribune Confirms. You Shouldn’t Be Happy About It Either 100degreehockey.com/2013/04/aeros-…
— 100 Degree Hockey (@100degreehockey) April 9, 2013
While I’m sure people in Iowa are thrilled about the news (they are), it’s a very sad day for hockey fans in Houston and Texas in general.
The Aeros had a strong history — the current rendition of the team spent 19 years in Houston as an IHL and AHL franchise, with the name as a homage to the former WHA team in the 1970s that once had a guy named Gordie Howe on the roster.
Losing a franchise not only hurts the fans who went to games at the Toyota Center, but hockey’s growth in general. There have been numerous times I’ve played hockey with native Texans in Austin and asked why they started playing the game in the first place (I grew up in New Jersey and later Michigan), and several times the answer has been “Because of watching the Texas Stars” or “Because of watching the Ice Bats.”
Losing a bus trip to Houston also hurts the Texas Stars and San Antonio Rampage, and we’ll talk about that later. But, for now let’s take a moment to think about the hockey fans in Houston and the people who won’t be exposed to the greatest game on earth because of this move.