Thrasherville will not soon forget what Atlanta Spirit did here

On October 5, 2007, opening night of the Thrashers 2007-8 season, Atlanta Spirit co-owner Rutherford Seydel stood by as the 2006-07 Southeast Division Championship banner was raised to the rafters of Philips Arena. He took control of the microphone as it was hoisted up and made a promise, a vow, to the 18,707 fans that had packed into the arena…and everyone else in the greater Thrasherville community. He assured us that night that he and the other co-owners would do everything in their power to bring a Stanley Cup championship to Atlanta.

I remember this event very well. My wife and I were sitting in section 319 along with our two sons. Just six months prior we were in 316 for the first playoff game in team history, feeling the upper deck shake when Eric Belanger scored the first ever post season goal for the Thrashers.

Rutherford Seydel stands by as the 2006-07 Southest Championship banner is raised to the rafters of Philips Arena. That night he promised the AS, LLC would do everything in their power to bring a winning team to Atlanta. It was a promise that went unfulfilled (AJC/Pouya Dianat)

Rutherford Seydel stands by as the 2006-07 Southest Championship banner is raised to the rafters of Philips Arena. That night he promised the AS, LLC would do everything in their power to bring a winning team to Atlanta. It was a promise that went unfulfilled (AJC/Pouya Dianat)

Unfortunately, Seydel’s promise was not only to go unfulfilled but as we now painfully realize, icing a competitive NHL team was in fact never the intent of the Atlanta Spirit, LLC, (Lies, Lawsuits and Contempt). His pledge that night was nothing more than hollow words uttered by one-eighth of an ownership group that never planned to put forth any effort whatsoever to back them up.

Just a few days after that opening night, I posted my first “Ice Man” blog on this site. By then we had had already seen the team drop the first two games and were on their way to six straight defeats to start the season. But before game number seven was played they fired head coach Bob Hartley…the only coach ever to take them to the playoffs and the only one ever to lead them to beyond 83 points in a single season.

I wrote a blog that day saying “good-bye and thank you” to coach Hartley…a man I had gotten to know and respect while my oldest son attended a couple of his hockey camps. In that opine, I indicated that the only true measure to gauge whether or not the move was the correct one or not would me determined by how the team fared afterwards and by who he was replaced with.

Of course, the person that finished the season behind the bench was general manager Don Waddell, whom so many felt should have been the man departing Thrasherville instead of Hartley. The team finished that campaign with a record of 34-40-8 for 76 points. They followed that up with another 76 effort during John Anderson’s first year as head coach then 83 in his second and least season. Last year they posted 80 points with coach Craig Ramsay at the helm.

I’ll leave it to you to determine whether or not the move to replace Hartley was a success or not. I think you all know where I stand on that issue.

AS, LLC: The Roots That Caused The Tree To Rot

While I understood that there were serious issues facing this Thrashers organization the day Waddell announced Hartley’s departure, what I didn’t quite yet have a firm grip on back then…something every Thrashers fan should have now…was just how deep the roots of the true problem with this organization ran. It was easy to point a finger at the only GM the franchise had ever had…really easy… but the fact of the matter was that the tips of the root system that was rotting the Thrashers tree forked in eight other directions…one to each of the partners that made up the Atlanta Spirit, LLC.

Bob Hartely will be known as the only head coach to lead the Thrashers to a playoff berth. Oh, and look at the stands behind him...just sayin' (AJC file photo)

Bob Hartley will be remembered as the only head coach to lead the Thrashers to a playoff berth. Thanks to the AS, LLC's lack of commitment to success, the team never came close to that level of play after he was released (AJC file photo)

From the day they took over the Thrashers, Hawks and Philips Arena, the AS, LCC members admitted they were not hockey people. But over the course of time we began to understand that they not only had no clue what they were doing as owners of an NHL franchise, they actually had a certain disdain for the them as well as their the fans. As such, they were treated as unwanted stepchildren.

The Spirit Boys took over at a time in the Thrashers history when the team was moving up in the hockey world. In the years leading up to that banner-raising night in the fall of ‘07, they had gone from 74 to 78 to 90 then to 97 points and a playoff spot. This team had no issues putting butts in seats on a regular basis back then…even to the point where there was talk on this blog about a “sellout jinx” as they had a habit of playing below par in front of a full Philips Arena.

It was a “jinx” the Spirit Clowns made certain we would not have to worry too much about in seasons to come.

A packed Philips Arena was not much of a worry here the past four years because Levenson, Seydel and the rest of the Great Octocluster choked off funds needed to keep top-tier talent, the main cause of the organization’s Player Retention Deficit Disorder. First it was Marion Hossa departing Atlanta at the trade deadline of 2008 along with Pascal Dupuis…who also scored for the Thrashers in their first playoff game…for such superstars as Erik Christensen, Colby Armstrong, Angelo Esposito and a draft pick. The revolving talent door continued to spin leading up to the departure of Ilya Kovalchuk two winters ago.

Ilya Kovalchuk departed Thrasherville in February of 2010. He was not alone in understanding the owners of the team he played for made playing here futile, and it is they who should hang their heads in shame (AJC/Curtis Compton)

Ilya Kovalchuk departed Thrasherville in February of 2010. He was not alone in understanding the owners of the team he played for made playing here futile. It is they who should hang their heads in shame (AJC/Curtis Compton)

Hossa, Kovalchuk and others departed Thrasherville for pretty much the same reason…the owners lacked a commitment to do what was necessary to build a successful franchise here and so they decided to take their talents elsewhere.

All the while, the Octocluster remained distracted with their years-long legal battles amongst themselves.

As if this wasn’t enough to turn Atlanta area hockey fans sour to their product, co-owner Bruce Levenson…the person the rest of the Spiriteers deemed the most qualified to represent the hockey portion of their little investment…employed such PR skills as calling a season ticket holder a “smart ass” during a town hall meeting. Later in that gathering when he was asked by another paying customer about rising ticket prices at the same time the on-ice talent level was being lowered, Levenson said we would have to just “deal with it”.

Insulting the people who they expect to shell out major coin to enjoy their product…yup, Brucie boy, that’s an excellent way to endear yourself and your team to the local sports community.

The Atlanta Spirit ‘Disposes’ Of Its Unwanted Stepchild

But today, the most dysfunctional and pathetic ownership cluster flop ever to stain the fabric of professional sports delivered their final insult…final slap to the face…to those who supported and followed the Thrashers. After running the team straight into the ground…after running the team at bargain basement levels at or just over the league minimum…after lying to the fan base for six years about their desire to “dispose” of the team…after displaying a contemptuous demeanor towards you and I…the seven remaining co-owners collected their millions and spirited the Thrashers off to Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Whether Don Waddell was coaching from the bench or simply performing GM duties, this team was often time simply hard to watch...for the fans and the players (AJC/Curtis Compton)

Whether Don Waddell was coaching from the bench or performing GM duties, the team he was responsible for placing on the ice was often times simply too painful to watch...for the fans and the players (AJC/Curtis Compton)

They will say that they had no choice…that there was not enough fan support to attract buyers intending to keep the team here. They’ll once again point the same finger of blame that was wagged in our faces last winter when Michael Gearon, Jr announced their desperate attempts to unload the team. They’ll say and do all of this, that is, if and when they acquire the intestinal fortitude to publicly answer such questions.

But to the notion that the fans here are to blame for what the Atlanta Spirit did to hockey in Atlanta I have but two words:

Bravo Sierra.

The responsibility rest squarely on the shoulders of the giant steaming pile of EPIC FAIL known as the AS, LLC…and I will toss in their willing accomplice Don Waddell, who for seven years merely serviced this team at bare bone levels and met payroll.

Unfortunately, none of this does anything to heal the pain that is felt by Atlanta hockey fans…and sports fans in general. You know what happened here, although so many across the continent may not. Anger, frustration…these words do not do justice for what we feel towards the individuals who inflicted this upon us.

One day I’d like someone to ask them all if they felt any shame for the damage they inflicted here…damage that could not have been any worse if they deliberately intended to do so. But feeling shame is a quality reserved for souls that actually give a damn about anyone outside of their own personal spheres. So looking for such with this group would be a bit much to ask.

And Finally…A Vow To You, Atlanta Spirit Boys

And so on behalf of the good people of Thrasherville, I would like to address the following to those directly responsible for this disaster…Mr. Seydel, Mr. Levenson, Michael Gearon Sr., Michael Gearon Jr., Ed Peskowitz, Todd Foreman, Beau Turner and even Steve Belkin.

The biginning of the end of the Thrashers. The Atlanta Spirit, LLC take over as owners in 2004 (AJC Staff Photo)

The beginning of the end of the Thrashers. The Atlanta Spirit, LLC take over as owners in 2004 (AJC Staff Photo)

In the spirit of that now-infamous “vow” from Rutherford Seydel to fans on October 5, 2007, I now make a solemn pledge to each and every one of you.

We will not forget you and we will not forget your names. But most importantly we will not forget what you collectively did to destroy NHL hockey in Atlanta, nor shall we forgive you for your actions.

It is a promise…a pledge…that I am quite certain will be kept far better than the one you made to us that night when the one-and-only Thrashers championship banner made it’s way up from the ice of Philips Arena.

516 comments Add your comment

Thrashers27

May 31st, 2011
12:35 pm

I believe a moment of silence is in order…

Long live The Thrashers.

Flagstaff

May 31st, 2011
12:35 pm

This is a damn travesty.

Many people will eventually be very, very sorry for this decision.

That is all I have to say.

Da Wanksta

May 31st, 2011
12:37 pm

Amen Brotha. The Thrashers never had a chance…

Thanks to the true fans!

Flagstaff

May 31st, 2011
12:37 pm

And, whether or not they do get rid of this blog, Bill, I want to thank you very much for all the great coverage throughout the years. You’ve been great.

dandylions

May 31st, 2011
12:37 pm

redhousecat

May 31st, 2011
12:39 pm

this saddens me. But I guess when big, greedy corporations get involved, it should be expected. This is just something else to prove what the economists are saying; Atlanta is turning into the next Detroit. At least Detroit businesses cared enough about their city to keep sports alive. I am bummed….

DCBrave33

May 31st, 2011
12:40 pm

An absolute, utter disgrace from this ownership group. I am nearly speechless.

One question though, is there any history of an ownership group making such a weasely, ugly, and down-right devious move like the Atlanta Spirit Group, but still having the gall to keep the arena and another team IN THE SAME TOWN whose back they just stabbed? Seriously, Art Modell, the Malley’s with the Dodgers, all of these other people who moved a team NEVER had the audacity to stay in the town whose team they just murdered and try and sell another team/product!

Do they think that people will not make the connection? That people will just blindly throw support to the Hawks after what they did with the Thrashers? I am an Atlanta sports fan, so I am still a hawks fan, but how do I support the murderer of one of my favorite teams? Must be an unprecedented situation.

EA

May 31st, 2011
12:41 pm

What a sad day in Thrasherville. I always wondered why the commish got booed in other cities. Now I know. What a pathetic group of individuals that destroyed hockey in our fine city.

stewie

May 31st, 2011
12:41 pm

so Winnipeg’s glass season ticket price is half of what the money grubbers were charging, oops, ARE charging! They haven’t even stopped selling Thrasher tickets!!

I WANT MY REFUND!

matt

May 31st, 2011
12:42 pm

Scumbags!!!!!!!!!!!! Rot in Hell!!!

EA

May 31st, 2011
12:43 pm

In additional-I hope the lying mouth piece for this group-Don Waddell-is in the first car out of Sugarloaf. Your gig is up!

Shawn@GSG

May 31st, 2011
12:44 pm

Not Happy at all – Thanks to you Bill for this blog. Still a daily read.

Chris16

May 31st, 2011
12:44 pm

This just sucks, I feel like I lost a part of my family. Thanks piece of Sh@#t Owners. Bill I hope you will not lose your blog, If so I have enjoyed reading it.

Burroughston Broch

May 31st, 2011
12:45 pm

Of course it’s all about money! Whatever made you think otherwise? All you few Thrasher fans just weren ‘t kicking in enough cash. The Winnepegians may do better.
The rest of us taxpayers are still angry about having to subsidize your passion by paying bonds for the next umpteen years.
The next time you try to get a local pro hockey team, remember this debacle and the earlier Flames debacle, and don’t expect any support from the majority of citizens who aren’t pro hockey fans.

Supes

May 31st, 2011
12:45 pm

I will never give another dollar to ASG by going to any events at Phillips for as long as they are owners. I feel betrayed and back stabbed…by this inept so called “ownership” group and Garry Bettman who lied and hid in the process. A Dark day…feels like a funeral. SHAME on ASG and the NHL commish.

JC

May 31st, 2011
12:46 pm

WAY TO GO CITY OF ATLANTA..WAY TO BECOME THE ONLY CITY EVER TO LOSE 2 NHL FRANCHISES!! YOU OUGHT TO THROW YOURSELVES A BIG PARTY DOWN PEACHTREE STREET TONIGHT!! ABSOLUTELY PATHETIC FOR A CITY THE SIZE OF ATLANTA, HAVING NOW 4 AND A HALF MILLION PLUS PEOPLE IN THE METRO AREA, THAT REFUSE TO SUPPORT A 20,000 SEAT PHILLIPS ARENA..I LIVE IN THE CHATTANOOGA AREA AND HAVE BEEN TO MORE THRASHER’S GAMES THAN MOST ATLANTANS HAVE…IF ATLANTA EVER GETS ANOTHER NHL FRANCHISE, I WILL NEVER PAY ONE MORE PENNY TO SEE A GAME CAUSE I ALREADY KNOW THEY’D LOSE THAT TEAM TOO!! SO, GIVE IT UP FOR YET ANOTHER CONFIRMATION THAT ATLANTA IS SIMPLY THE WORST SPORTS CITY EVER!!!!

Chris16

May 31st, 2011
12:47 pm

I am listening to radio on tsn, Season tickets are going for $1700 to $5000 and single tickets are going $87. They are shooting to sell 13,000 seats.

ylojkt

May 31st, 2011
12:48 pm

ASG is a POS! I encourage all of you to fax and email to the BoG the way you feel about this and ask them to vote no on June 21.

Don Rickles

May 31st, 2011
12:49 pm

And the Spirit Clowns still haven’t had the balls to tell the employees.

Puck Like A Porn Star

May 31st, 2011
12:50 pm

What’s the over-under on Hawks opening night attendance?

Fcuk asg, the nhl, and everyone rubbing this in our faces.

I’m done watching hockey, and, no, I’m never driving to Gwinnett.

Tincup9

May 31st, 2011
12:50 pm

I took the family to the second to last game this year, just in case. Glad my girls saw one last game.

Thanks Bill, Thanks to all of the regular posters here as well.

kovyoverrated

May 31st, 2011
12:51 pm

Sad, sad day.
Listened to some of Kincaid’s interview with Gearon. What a joke!

English Teacher

May 31st, 2011
12:51 pm

Well, this just sucks.

HockeyLove

May 31st, 2011
12:52 pm

I’m trying to be grateful for the fact that we had a team, and not bitter about all of this. I’m trying just as hard as ASG did to keep the team in Atlanta.

J-man

May 31st, 2011
12:53 pm

Hawks fans and Thrashers fans have very few fans in common. It’s not just a racial thing either. Atlanta has tons of hard core white NBA fans who have zero interest in hockey.

Up Yours ASG

May 31st, 2011
12:53 pm

stewie's dad

May 31st, 2011
12:53 pm

WHERE’S MY MONEY?

Rogie

May 31st, 2011
12:56 pm

Michael Gearon, in his just finished interview with Kincade, may seem contrite but the message that spoke louder than his words are what he didn’t say.

1. He failed to find investors over the past few years….really? Is that surprising? Would you want to join an obviously dysfunctional ownership group and have little say? This team was only going to survive here with fresh new ownership not these idiots.

2. He implied the Spirit Group wasn’t afraid to spend money because the Hawks have one of the highest payrolls in the league.. True, but the hockey team always had one of the lowest in their league. Trade deadline deals for top players were almost never considered. They never put money into their minor league system and player development. Their scouting was basically Don Waddell and NHL central scouting.

Today is a sad day and as much as it’s gutsy for Gearon to speak in public, the last thing I want to hear is someone doing a “mia culpa” personal PR campaign that’s just spinning the story the way he wants us to hear it.

me

May 31st, 2011
12:57 pm

Do the right thing. Retire 37.

Stan Drulia

May 31st, 2011
12:57 pm

Even though it was obviously going to happen – this is hitting me really hard…. can’t believe all the lies and deceit from these awful owners and awful league. Never thought much one way or the other about Bettman – know I think he is the lowest of the low. Just took my Thrasher wall calender down at work…. it will be the first year in the last 7 at my job that I don’t have one up front and center. What a terrible thing for us fans and for our city. Maybe Kasim Reed and Bettman can laugh at us over a beer sometime. Good luck keeping Phillips Arena and all the restaurants in the Omni open without 42 nights full of people every season. Way to think this through Kasim.

Libby

May 31st, 2011
1:00 pm

Pinhead and I just want to say bye to you Rawhide, We really enjoyed our conservations and your opinions. We will miss our Thrashers. I also listened to Gearon. He is a joke.

Call it like it is

May 31st, 2011
1:01 pm

Atlanta’s fault, the fans fault?? I don’t think so chief. Go to any college football game and the stadium will be full! Why, because southerns love winners! 4 pro teams in Atlanta and how many championships?? “1″ Thats it, just 1. Yet Atlanta fans sux because they want continue to pay good hard money for a team that goes no where. Please. People will point to the Braves about how Atlanta will barely show up to the playoffs. And that true, why? Because we know they will choke like they did for 15 years in a row. The Falcons, 1 superbowl apperance and they had their feathers handed to them. The Hawks, nothing, not close. Thrashers while fun to watch, the owners didnt support them, you knew they were going no where, so why pay money to see them. No I dont think so. Fool me once “the Flames”, shame on you, fool me twice “the Thrashers” shame on me. Want fool me again. NHL you can take your teams and shove it!

Up Yours ASG

May 31st, 2011
1:02 pm

If you would like to express your interest in purchasing a product from Bruce Levenson’s company UCG, give them a call

UCG Headquarters
Two Washingtonian Center
9737 Washingtonian Blvd., Ste. 100
Gaithersburg, MD 20878-7364
Phone: 301.287.2700

Sherry Taylor

May 31st, 2011
1:02 pm

I will do my best to find out whatever endeavors they invest in, although to hear them tell it they have no money left, and I will NEVER go near said investment. I will NEVER attend a Hawks game, although their ownership of that and Philips is questionable now, and I will NEVER attend another concert in Philips. My measly litttle one or two tickets won’t hurt them, but it certainly will make me feel better.
Wonder how they feel today, knowing they are the most hated men in the South and how the mayor feels now that we know he doesn’t care about hockey and that he is a man of agenda that doesn’t include you and I.

SouthernFriedHockey

May 31st, 2011
1:03 pm

Bill- Thanks for everything through your tenure on this blog. It has been a pleasure.

Respected Bloggers-I have not commented very often but have read through the seasons. Thanks for your insights. I have enjoyed it as well.

Winnepeg-Congratulations though it is not right to come at our expense. Do not come here and trash us either as we are sick of it. Take care of the team and good luck.

Other trolls- Enough already. Look in the mirror and ask yourselves the tough questions. If all you can do is hide behind a keyboard and talk smack then I am sorry for you as a human being.

Peace Out,
SFH-Thrashers Fan

Badger Bob

May 31st, 2011
1:03 pm

TNSE calling Levenson “honorable and professional” shows that Bravo Sierra flies all over the continent.

Extremely well said, Bill! We owe you for hosting such a great blog!

thrasherfan9995

May 31st, 2011
1:03 pm

Just finished listening to Gearon get all choked up on 680 the Fan. He feels real bad, doesn’t know how to explain it to his kids, starts crying, etc.

I was 11 when the Flames came to town. Ted put them on the Superstation, and I fell in love with the sport. I cried when they left for Calgary, and I rejoiced when Atlanta got a second chance at the NHL. I’m older now, and a lot of things that used to get me worked up just don’t seem as important anymore.

The one thing I will NEVER forgive ASG for is lying to me and all Thrasher fans about trying to build a winner, while at the same time, trying to “dispose of the asset.”

The ridicule that Atlanta will be subjected for losing an NHL team not once, but twice, is such that I hope these individuals are never again welcome in polite society. I haven’t watched a moment of the NHL playoffs this year, I won’t watch the Cup finals, and you can believe that it will be a long time before the Hawks enjoy any of my hard earned money.

Now I’m just one individual, and I know that ASG, Gary Bettman and the rest of the NHL don’t care about fans in Atlanta, but my one little piece of revenge is that mine is a NIelsen household. They will be playing the Winter Classic in hell before I patronize anything associated with the NHL or the ASG ever again.

Snoman

May 31st, 2011
1:04 pm

Did anyone else just receive the putrid rantings in an email from Brucie and Mikey thanking us for all our support? It also includes more lies about how hard they tried to find someone to keep the team local. a$g sucks!!! I will never attend another function in Philips Arena as long as those pieces of feces own the arena and the Hawks.

t_plunk

May 31st, 2011
1:05 pm

I tell ya what hockey just lost a family of fans here. my dad and his brother spent money they didn’t have growing up to go watch the flames, and I’ve loved learning about hockey and this season more than before I had developed a decent understanding and appreciation for the spectacle… even planned to get season tickets (if they stayed) Now, unless the US team is competing in the olympics… no more hockey for me. go braves!

ATLREP

May 31st, 2011
1:05 pm

RIP THRASHERS

Paminski

May 31st, 2011
1:05 pm

Bill – Thank you so much for your entertaining and informative blog. I hope you find something equally impressive to do with your new spare time. There’s no reason to stop blogging about hockey in whatever outlet is available.

Commenters – I’ll miss seeing the usual cast of characters. Yes, that includes Sage. It was a pleasure meeting some of you in person too.

Atlanta Spirit – See you, Losers. I hope you sell the Hawks at a huge loss. They can move on to something better and you can ship out.

Players – I think I might be more a fan of individual players now instead of a team. I will certainly have a soft spot for each former Thrasher, especially Slater.

Winnipeg – Congratulations. Please have respect for the team’s roots. However, Thrashers belong in Atlanta, so I hope you’ll switch to Jets.

Goodbye, everyone.

Sherry Taylor

May 31st, 2011
1:08 pm

Oh, and one more thing, ASG–LIARS LIARS PANTS ON FIRE! The entire community knows what you all are. Your fake tears are wasted on us. You should be ashamed. I’m sure Ted is.

Sage of Bluesland

May 31st, 2011
1:09 pm

Maybe Don Waddell will finally–FINALLY–be shown the door and leave Atlanta?

Oh well, I’m simply thankful I stopped the subsidization of the incompetence I clearly saw so long ago.

Just think, if more had done so EARLIER, we may not have been to this point….Maybe the league would have stepped in when there was a “no-move” clause and the ownership was proven to not have the clients’ best interests at heart?

Oh well, it is what it is. You are responsible for getting what you paid for–and what you demanded. Don’t leave that part out, folks. You actually thought the proverbial “tail wagged the dog”, didn’t you? You thought by showing up and being sheep, that things would magically change?

I guess you can see you were wrong…I certainly was in the first couple of years of this abomination’s existence….but, instead of making excuses and constantly defending the indefensible, I woke up and cut the funds.

The sheep have a seat at this table, too. I’m calling for a final spweadsheet from Sara to help us “analyze” what went wrong…

Ssmith

May 31st, 2011
1:09 pm

Sad day- Just wanted to say thank you to Rawhide. I have always enjoyed your wit and your dead-on anylsis of our Thrashers. You will be missed.

Nathan

May 31st, 2011
1:12 pm

I was there at the rally to “Bring the Ice Age to Atlanta” and there at game 1 when Buchberger sneaked one by Brodeur after a whiff pass from Stefan. I was there from my dorm room listening to games on NHL network in between class and playing college hockey. I was at the two playoff games and the all-star game. Now I’m here as an attorney sitting at my desk trying my hardest not to throw my laptop against the wall. I grew up in the Thrashers era and whenever my folks and I couldn’t see eye to eye, the Thrashers could always be talked about and watched together. For all the good memories that the Thrashers brought, I will be forever grateful. ASG you killed a lot more than a chance at a good hockey team or a chance for Atlanta to ever be a Stanley Cup Champion.

Flames

May 31st, 2011
1:13 pm

Now my children are experiencing what I went through as a kid when the Flames left town. Except this time it is a lot different. All three of my children play hockey at the Cooler in Alpharetta. The have all grown up going to Thrashers games and meeting the players. This will be a hard pill to swallow. I really feel betrayed by ASG and the NHL. I just want to cry right now. The NHL felt it was ok to save the Coyotes in Phoenix but not save the Thrashers. I’m trying so hard in my heart not to hate Canadians right now. I know its not there fault but when you see these SOB’s on the blog rubbing this in our faces. You just can’t help it. Bill I would like to personally thank you for the great job you have always done. Some of you know that I personally friends with several of the players on the team. They also feel betrayed by ASG, especially the ones that have just signed contracts with the team. Several of the players are really upset with this move and have called Atlanta home for several years. Nobody wants to move to Winnepeg. Bill thanks again for always speaking on our behalf.

JPVJ

May 31st, 2011
1:13 pm

Join me !! Let us all raise the tin-foil cup that is within our hearts !!!! Vive la feuille d’étain !!!! Vive la feuille d’étain !!!! Vive la feuille d’étain !!!! Vive la feuille d’étain !!!! Vive la feuille d’étain !!!!

cousin Eddie

May 31st, 2011
1:13 pm

Thanks Rawhide for all that you have done. Even though I stopped posting the last couple of months, I still read your blogs and clung to hope, that the Thrashers would stay. I hope you continued to keep us updated on things going on with past ownership and players. On another note, youth hockey is going to take a hit in the next couple of years and it is a shame considering how much growth has happened in these 11 years.

Brew

May 31st, 2011
1:14 pm

Would love to meet each member of the ASG just so I could punch them in the throat. Lying sacks of crap.

Former Nasty Nester

May 31st, 2011
1:15 pm

And with that, Beau Turner ruined the sports city his father built. A big Foxtrot Unicorn to all the ASG owners and a heartfelt goodbye to the Thrashers. Gonna miss weekend hockey and tailgating.

When’s the Tailwake?