Did you know?
Did you care?
If you do, Brad Richards was taken by the mysterious "Florida" franchise in the first round, 8th overall. They also took Ben Clymer in the 5th round.
Today the WHA is holding its amateur draft, trying to poach exceptionally talented juniors like Sydney Crosby and Dion Phaneuf away from the CHA and NHL
Yes, Florida, you have a team. It doesn't have a name. It doesnt have a home - we know it wont be Orlando or Jacksonville, it doesnt have a lease, and it doesnt have a season ticket base. But it has Brad Richards. And Martin St. Louis. Assuming, of course, they choose to play in this league.
And while it seems the Florida franchise is in a state of disarray, it is still better off than the "Founders Franchise", which also drafted players this weekend, but doesnt even know what country it will play in. The WHA says the team will play in either Cincinatti or Vancouver - assuming anyone is willing to own the team. My bet is Cincinatti, as GM place is leased to the Canucks, and the old PNE is leased to the WHL's Giants. Not to mention that Victoria has an ECHL franchise, and half of the BCJHL Jr 'A' league is based in greater Vancouver. We Canucks love our hockey, but there are limits to how many teams we will support.
The other six teams are a little better off. Four have names, but only three have actually signed leases. To the best of my knowledge, only two season tickets have been handed out - in Detroit via raffle. No TV deals yet, and perhaps a handful of carreer minor leaguer's signed, if that.
And only three months until puck drop to get all of this organized.
I'd like to think of the WHA as being little better than the XFL, but in doing so, I'd be insulting Vince McMahon, who managed to get one full season out of his league. One season more than I expect of the WHA.