Where Will the NHL Expand to Next? Part 2 – Portland

It is inevitable the NHL is going to expand to 32 teams at soon. With the new realignment, the NHL will look to expand to in order to even out the divisions. It is no longer a question of “if” they will expand. It has now become a discussion of “when” and where.”

With this series, Predlines will look at 10 cities that are possible candidates for an NHL expansion team. Factors such as population, arena and previous hockey experience will be examined to decide the best place for the next NHL team. Where will the NHL expand its brand to next?

Timbers fans have supported their Portland soccer team. Could they be that supportive with an NHL team? Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

PORTLAND

Population: 603,106

Possible Arena: Rose Garden

Previous Hockey Experience: No defunct teams

Current Hockey Situation: Portland Winterhawks (WHL)

Team Name They Should Pick: Portland Lumberjacks

Why it will work: In my opinion, this will be a great pick for a new team if Seattle gets a team. Portland and Seattle have the biggest rivalry in MLS soccer. A Portland-Seattle rivalry could become the next big rivalry of the west. This could be a late night matchup people will stay up for if the teams become contenders.

Portland already supports a hockey team already. Why not take the WHL team out and put in a big league team? The Portland Trail Blazers owner agrees and has already expressed interest in bringing hockey to his city.

Why it won’t work: Portland seems like the purgatory of a hockey town. It’s not bad, but it’s not that great either. Portland only has the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers and the Portland Timbers of the MLS. These teams have gotten the support they need to become successful franchises, but bringing a NHL team would be a big leap for the city. A Portland NHL team could be very successful but it would still be a gamble bringing the NHL to the Rose City.

Topics: Fans, NHL, Nhl Expansion, Portland

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  • Cris H

    They should get ride of 2 teams to even out the divisions. The talent pool is diluted and there are too many teams that are in financial trouble. Of course if Portland or any expansion teams can actually MAKE money it will help the rich teams in not having give them money every year.

  • Erik

    Portland Pirates i thought were in Portland, Maine

    • James Summerlin

      You are correct. It’s fixed

  • JB

    #Research

    • James Summerlin

      Noted and fixed

  • Jason

    Assuming Seattle were to get a team, putting a 9th team in the pacific would only unbalance the conferences further

    • James Summerlin

      They would have to rearrange the conferences, of course. I don’t think that would be that difficult.

  • Matt

    The only choice is the Portland Buckaroos. If anyone knows PDX Hockey history, this is the only name the city will live with. Too much history not to take it

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