Houston’s lack of hockey creates void

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HOCKEY -- Team Photo 2009c
St. Thomas previously had a hockey team, but due to numerous difficulties, the team has been disbanded. The cry for a hockey team extends beyond the school to the city of Houston.

Houston has four professional men’s sports teams; The Rockets, The Texans, The Dynamo and The Astros.

These four teams cover four of the five major cornerstone sports of the United States, Basketball, Football. Soccer and Baseball. The notable absence for such a large city, and the fifth cornerstone sport of the U.S. is hockey.

Do not be surprised. While Houston is the 4th hottest city in the U.S. that does not prevent us from having an ice rink, thanks to modern marvels such as air conditioning. In fact, Houston did have a hockey team and you should remember them from their years of success. From 1994-2013 The Houston Aeros repped H-Town on the National Hockey stage, winning two regular season titles as well as two division championships. This level of success and glory needs to be brought Houston sports are beginning to take off, with three of our four teams making the playoffs their 2015 season and all four remaining hopefuls for this 2016 season.

Houston is showing previously unprecedented potential to make a strong showing in every major North American sport this year, except hockey. Simply put, H-Town deserves some representation on the ice. The biggest difference between the North and the South besides a Mason-Dixon line and snow is hockey. Northerners. Love. Hockey. It is just that simple. But for those of us who know people who have moved and still retain their Northern roots, it seems like they speak a different language when they talk about icing, cross-checks, and washouts. Now not all of us are so clueless about this cold sport, many Houstonians who remember enjoying the Aeros still know the rules or at least how to enjoy themselves at hockey games.

If Houston had a hockey team again, it would take the edge off the culture shock for new-coming Houstonians, and provide a fun time for those who enjoy a sport that is not played in Houston’s blazing heat. Another very important aspect of a hockey team would be increased revenue for the city as the oil market continues to take hits. A hockey team would mean more people visiting town, staying in hotels, renting cars and dining at restaurants. A giant stadium using lots of electricity to keep an ice rink alive in Texas would generate millions in revenue and lots of jobs.

On a more competitive note, if Dallas can field a hockey team (the Stars), and a winning one at that, what choice do we have but to make our own team and attempt to one-up that city up north. While not all Dallas teams are as hated as the Cowboys, let us face it, they continue to be the most successful football team in the Lone Star State. Therefore we must beat all of their teams as if they were the Cowboys, not just for us but for all the other anti-Cowboys fans out there. When you stop to think about it for a moment, a hockey team would be like a fresh cool breeze for the economy.

In Houston right now, new markets for spending and a new team to represent Houston is exactly what the city needs. A new team that will take the ice with pride while utterly destroying the team from Fort Worth. This is a situation that is long overdue for the loyal hockey fans of Houston who have been disappointed up to this point.

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Erich Hennings is a Junior at St. Thomas. He started working for the Eagle fall 2015. His job entails writing opinion pieces for the paper and formatting and writing other articles for the web edition of the paper. His office hours are 3:00 PM-4:00PM every Tuesday and Thursday. He can be found in his office, a 2006 beige Toyota Camry which can be located on the second floor of the parking garage on the south side of campus. He is willing to accept donations to help him fund his work; working as hard as he does gives him a tremendous appetite.

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