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  • 09/20/2011, 03:55PM ET

NHL Throwdown. Should Evander Kane change his number?

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For a true hockey TD'er please.

In honor of yesterday's opening of the NHL pre-season I pose this question.

Since the new owners of the former Atlanta Thrashers chose to re-establish the Winnipeg Jets name should they honor the original Jets retirement of Bobby Hull's famous #9?

I say YES.

Relocating the team to Winnipeg itself does not necessitate the change, but to re-christen the team the Jets fundamentally ties the relocated team to the original Jets and as such their retired numbers.

(25 was also retired to honor Thomas Steen and 10 for Dale Hawerchuck, but no current Jets players wear those numbers.)

To be fair Kane asked for and received permission from Bobby Hull to wear the number, but I believe this was merely for show as the new Jets management insisted Kane keep the number and as a relocated franchise was really under no obligation to honor the previous Jets retired numbers.

At the end of the day any team in any league has the final say on retired numbers, but if you are going to rename your franchise after a city's original team to reap the goodwill it holds, then you should also honor their former greats.


I have to disagree with you..

While the team is called the Winnipeg Jets again, the team that relocated(Atlanta Thrashers) has no connection to Bobby Hull. Now, if it was the Coyotes that moved back to Winnipeg than I would agree with you.

Putting it into context, the Minnesota North Stars of years past, retired the number 7 in honour of Neal Broten. However, currently Matt Cullen of the Minnesota Wild wears the #7. The reason I bring this up, is because the Wild have no connection to the North Stars except for playing in the same city. It's the same situation as in Winnipeg.

Fact is, that the new Winnipeg Jets have no connection to the old Winnipeg Jets team.

There are countless other examples of this as well.

Keep in mind that the new Winnipeg team was only renamed the Jets due to what I believe was public pressure. This is a brand new team now, with a "clean slate." The only numbers that should remain retired are those that were retired by the Atlanta Thrashers. However, since there are none, than all numbers should be available and rightfully so.


Welcome Jebus.

It's all in the name.

If TNSE chose any other name I wouldn't have made this TD. They could've even kept Thrashers since Manitoba is wheat country. (Neil Young even wrote a song about wheat thrashers)

But they didn't. They usurped the name Jets. Regardless of why, public pressure or not. They have benefited from the name Jets. That is why your Cullen argument is off. Minnesota did not use the North Stars name and chose to create a new identity with the name Wild.

The current Cleveland Browns have no connection to the former Browns/Ravens franchise yet they still honor the original Browns retired numbers. This was done out of respect for the city and the fans of Cleveland. I say Winnipeg deserves the same.

Don't you appreciate that the Baltimore Ravens honor #19 even though Unitas' connection is with the city and not the Ravens? The same should go for Hull & Winnipeg.

It all comes down to whether you honor Winnipeg's hockey history or just cast it aside.

No other team name would have given TNSE more goodwill so I say honoring #9 is a small price to pay. After all, Evander Kane is good, but not that good.


That's where you are wrong, though. This has nothing to do with Winnipeg's hockey history. Look, I can respect the Ravens decision to honour the #19 for Johnny U. Heck, I love him and the Colts. It was simply a nice gesture. The Ravens have not retired the #19. So, that's all it is, a nice gesture. Fact is, the team that relocated to Winnipeg had no prior connection to the former Jets team. Just like the current Ravens team had any connection to the old Baltimore Colts team

Evander Kane should not have to give up his number 9, he wore it when he played as a member of the Thrashers franchise and it is still the same team just in a different city. Like I said, if the Coyotes moved back to Winninpeg, then I would agree with you. Point is, there is no connection between the Thrashers defunct franchise to the Winnipeg Jets defunct franchise.

Sure, True North could say, that they need to honour Bobby Hull and his number 9, but, Bobby Hull had no connection to this current team. Should the Houston Texans retire the #34 as a tribute to Earl Campbell? Honestly? No. Campbell had nothing to do with the Texans franchise.

The new Jets now have a chance to make new history.


Evander Kane should not have to give up his number 9

This is semantics, but it's important. I never said Kane should be forced to give up his number, just that it would have been honorable.

I agree that the final decision belongs rightly to the team. My question is about honoring tradition.

I get the whole "New franchise/New tradition" argument, I do. But I wanted to use this forum to discuss why I feel the Jets and Kane should have honored the retirement of #9 in Winnipeg.

You have logic on your side and I have emotion. I was hoping more people would side with me because they respect the traditions we hold so dear in sports. And the NHL more than others.

True hockey fans know not just the names of the trophies, but who those men were and why they are so honored. We have the handshake line. We have a singular Cup where upon the victorious are engraved forever.

The average NFL fan has no idea their conference trophies are named for George Halas and Lamar Hunt or even who they were.

The Jets are entitled to do what they want, but I would have chosen differently.

So a vote for me is a vote for tradition.







Or you can vote for Jebus. It's cool.


Your first point states that the Jets should have honored the retired #9. (Which they are)

In your 3rd argument you say "I never said Kane should be forced to give up his number"

It was very big of Bryan Little to give up the #10 out of respect to Dale Hawerchuk but that is an exception, it shouldn't be the norm. Evander Kane had asked Bobby Hull if he can wear the number 9. It's evident that no one is forgetting the Jets history or NHL tradition or whatever you want to call it.

What we are arguing is Tradition Vs. Future

The thing is, True North has decided to unretire and honour the #'s 9,10, 25. It's a nice gesture done for the Winnipeg Jets of years past, but this is not the same Jets team. When Quebec moved to Colorado, no retired numbers were brought forward, the numbers were honoured.

True North is doing their part to respect the tradition of hockey in Winnipeg, but this is a new team, with no prior connection to the city itself. This is, for all intents and purposes a new chance and a new beginning for hockey in Winnipeg.

For the most part, change can be scary, but change is good, let the city enjoy this team.


Good TD Return of the Wing.

September 20, 2011  04:58 PM ET

Interesting.. was considering taking this. The only current team that really has to have #9 retired, at least for Hull, is the Coyotes. And another reason I think it's okay is because (at least according to you, I haven't done extensive research on this) is that Hull said it was fine. Still, there is no reason NOT to change numbers, and even though this isn't like the Browns situation in which they assumed all of the former Cleveland Browns franchises' records, I think they honor the retired numbers from the previous franchise (I believe).

September 20, 2011  05:23 PM ET
QUOTE(#1):

The only current team that really has to have #9 retired, at least for Hull, is the Coyotes.

And the Chicago Blackhawks.

September 20, 2011  05:31 PM ET
QUOTE(#2):

And the Chicago Blackhawks.

Considering his best years were as a Blackhawk, I am surprised it was missed

September 20, 2011  05:58 PM ET
QUOTE(#2):

And the Chicago Blackhawks.

Yeah, my bad, my mind was only thinking about the Winnipeg Jets, so I only thought of the Coyotes.

September 20, 2011  06:28 PM ET

Should Mariano Rivera give up his number?

September 20, 2011  06:33 PM ET
QUOTE(#5):

Should Mariano Rivera give up his number?

It's a little late now, but I think he should have when MLB retired 42 league wide in 1997. Rivera was only in his 3rd season and should have changed it then.

September 20, 2011  06:41 PM ET



Anybody that does this to Matt Cooke can wear any number he wants in my opinion.

September 20, 2011  06:53 PM ET
QUOTE(#7):

Anybody that does this to Matt Cooke can wear any number he wants in my opinion.

I accept your reasoning, but you're the only one.

September 20, 2011  09:10 PM ET

Bryan Little decided not to wear number 10 out of respect for Dale Hawerchuk. Changed his number to 18 following the team's move to Winnipeg.

September 20, 2011  09:18 PM ET

I have to agree with Jebus. These two teams have no connection other than their name. If it was the same franchise, then I could understand...

September 20, 2011  10:56 PM ET

It's not "should he have to". It's just "should he".

And I can't think of any reason why he shouldn't. It would make a tribute to Hull and would be a smart PR move for both him and the team.

September 20, 2011  10:57 PM ET

a *nice tribute

September 21, 2011  08:42 AM ET
QUOTE(#12):

It's not "should he have to". It's just "should he".And I can't think of any reason why he shouldn't. It would make a tribute to Hull and would be a smart PR move for both him and the team.

Kane should have a choice, he shouldn't have to do anything.

September 21, 2011  09:08 AM ET
QUOTE(#12):

It's not "should he have to". It's just "should he".And I can't think of any reason why he shouldn't. It would make a tribute to Hull and would be a smart PR move for both him and the team.

September 21, 2011  09:08 AM ET
QUOTE:

Is left possibly Hail to the Wing?

nope its dj

September 21, 2011  09:15 AM ET

He doesn't have to....but he should change.

September 21, 2011  09:55 AM ET

It would be nice if the new Jets organization honors the old one and hangs banners with Hull's number and Hawerchuk's number, but the players should be able to wear whatever number they want.

September 21, 2011  10:10 AM ET

At the very least the league should put a rule of only 1 number retirement per player league wide. The careers are very transient now lets not run out of numbers in 20 years.Who wants to see 3 digit numbered jerseys-no thanks

September 21, 2011  10:52 AM ET
QUOTE(#19):

At the very least the league should put a rule of only 1 number retirement per player league wide. The careers are very transient now lets not run out of numbers in 20 years.Who wants to see 3 digit numbered jerseys-no thanks

Or do as the Maple Leafs do, honour every single number ever worn by a Leafs player and only retire two actual numbers

 
September 21, 2011  11:23 AM ET
QUOTE(#16):

nope its dj

Actually I was Hail to the Wing, but I did something stupid over a year and a half ago and I left Fannation.

So when I decided to come back I chose Return of the Wing as my name, get it?

Yoda might remember what happened and my apology.

But I am friends with DJ. I was before and he was the first one I reached out to when I came back.

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