It’s been and OHL season of highs and lows for the Hamilton Bulldogs. With a devastating and rather lopsided loss to Ottawa for the championship title, questions once again begin to become raised as to the future of the franchise within the Hamilton area. One particular avenue that has been gaining a little bit of traction since this loss has been the discussions surrounding potentially moving the team to Burlington. This has major support and detractors on both sides yet is a conversation worth having.
One of the biggest talking points when it comes to deciding the future of the Bulldogs within the Hamilton area is that of the issues surrounding the current arena. Not only is it an aging space but one that has not been very fruitful when it comes to drawing in local support and keeping up with the modernization of hockey franchises across Canada. This hasn’t stopped the team from amassing great preseason’s and seasonal hockey, but the effects that it feels when it comes to a stabilizing level of support is something that is always on the minds of the team’s current owners.
Though losing our hockey team to a rival city may be a tough hit to sports fans across the Hamilton area, looking out for the betterment of our team and ensuring that they have the capability to be as successful as possible is one thing that should always be kept in mind. More and more of our younger players are being eyed for the NHL draft each year, which means that having the best possible foundations in order to progress their hockey careers is of the highest level of importance both for the players and for the fans.
Of course, it would be a much better situation all around if we had the capability to provide these avenues to our own hockey players within the city of Hamilton but whether or not the current team owners or the city are willing to make the necessary financial investments to improve upon the current arena situation is always a question that seems to evade a solid answer. With each year that passes, the capability for our current set up to accommodate all the needs of a growing and successful OHL team begin to dwindle, at the detriment to both the team and the city.
Whether you’ve been a supporter of the Hamilton Bulldogs throughout their run in the city or have recently begun to pay attention to our local team, getting yourself involved in the conversation and making your desires known to both the franchise owners and the city of Hamilton can go a long way to ensuring that we have the capability to continue to enjoy our place in the league, while also setting up our team for the best chance at future success. The direction of the Bulldogs may be in question but our support for our local athletes never is.