June 6, 2005
Frozen Four: Our Picks

With the NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Committee gathering this week to hear presentations from potential hosts of the 2009, 2010 and 2011 Frozen Fours, the INCH staff was debating our personal choices. We thought we'd share our picks, in order, along with some of the reasoning that went into each one.

Mike Eidelbes Joe Gladziszewski James Jahnke
1. Boston
It can be pricey, the traffic sucks and the Fleet Center is a so-so building. But it's a great hockey town, there's no shortage of non-hockey activities and the restaurants and nightlife are first rate.
1. Tampa
Having seen two Lightning games at the St. Pete Times Forum, I'm convinced that this is a true hockey market. The community will welcome and support the event.
1. Tampa
If you like cheerleaders on the ice, wait 'til you see 'em on the beach.
2. St. Paul
Besides being the site of the best arena in the world not built with casino and tract housing profits, it's a city with a small-town feel that rolls out the welcome mat for visitors.
2. St. Paul
Loved the atmosphere in the building in 2002. It might not be the same if the Gophers aren't playing, but even in that case, it'll still be a great environment.
2. Washington
Whom do you have to lobby to get the reflecting pool by the Lincoln Memorial frozen for a little shinny?
3. Tampa
With golf, beaches, Busch Gardens and Ybor City, this place screams "Take the whole week off". And don't let the Anaheim experience sour you – it's a relatively inexpensive flight to Tampa (and even cheaper to nearby neighbor Orlando).
3. Philadelphia
Again, personal experiences at the venue have been positive and the city just hosted the best-attended NCAA lacrosse final in history.
3. Detroit
Larry Brown can return to his old stomping grounds as coach of his new team, the Providence Skating Friars.
4. Philadelphia
It's known as the City of Brotherly Love, but in this case it'd be better dubbed the City That Elicits No Strong Feelings One Way or the Other.
4. Detroit
Sure, having the event at a football stadium sounds a little silly, but I also had that concern when I heard about the hugely successful Cold War game.
4. St. Paul
I'd rank it higher, but I hear locals are still recovering from INCH's last visit.
5. Washington
It's not a hockey town the Caps ranked 25th in attendance in 2003-04. It's a Redskins town and, based on that team's recent play, one could argue that it's not a sports town.
5. Boston
I'll admit my bias in ranking the Hub so low. Because I attend games in Boston every year, another trip there isn't very exciting.
5. Boston
I'd rank it higher, but I hear locals are still recovering from INCH's last visit.
6. Detroit
It's easy to pile on a city when it's down, and Detroit will host baseball's All-Star Game, the Super Bowl and the Final Four over the next four years. See, bad things do happen in threes.
6. Washington
Some will argue that D.C. has the best "non-hockey" activities for fans. But aren't we picking a hockey tournament site? You can visit the Smithsonian any time of the year. It doesn't have to happen on the second weekend in April.
6. Philadelphia
If Philly residents boo Santa Claus, what will they do to Jerry York?
Jess Myers
1. Boston
Everything about the Hub oozes hockey, starting with the glimpse of Mike Eruzione’s boyhood home you can get (if you know where to look) as your plane is on final approach into Logan.
2. St. Paul
The Xcel has a hockey sweater on display from every high school and college team in Minnesota, making the annual Frozen Four hunt for unique sweaters in the crowd just a bit anti-climactic.
3. Washington
Something about crowning the national champion in the nation’s capital seems right. Plus, if Denver qualified, we’d finally have a brilliant leader named George in town, for a few days anyway.
4. Tampa
In the community that gave us indoor baseball in the Sunshine State, Manon Rheaume in the NHL and a putrid NFL team in three shades of orange, what could go wrong?
5. Detroit
Let me get this straight: They want to play the Frozen Four at a football stadium, and yet they insist on being called “Hockeytown.” I think we’re going to need further explanation here.
6. Philadelphia
Unless they’re going to play the games at the Palestra, we’re taking the Terrell Owens approach: “You’d have to pay me a LOT of money …”

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