Evening Links and Thoughts: Potential Markets for MLS

Evening Links and Thoughts: Potential Markets for MLS

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On December 8, 2009
  • 7 Comments
  • Evening Links and Thoughts, MLS Expansion

expansion_map

Forgive me for the slow day, I’ve honestly just needed a little time away from the keyboard to focus on other things today. Blame the holidays if you will but sometimes a guy just needs a day off. Anyways, I did find one thing tonight that caught my eye and as you all know I love a good MLS expansion topic.

Portfolio has done a very interesting study of the top American markets available for expansion in sports, and those that are over saturated. (And here is the full article it comes from.) Click on the MLS logo for the MLS cities.

Pretty interesting huh?

For those too lazy to click the link the map suggests the follow are potential markets for expansion:

Sacramento, CA
Fresno, CA
Oxnard, CA
Riverside, CA
Las Vegas, NV
Tuscon, AZ
Honolulu, HI
Albuquerque, NM
Omaha, NE
Tulsa, OK
Austin, TX
San Antonio, TX
Little Rock, AK
Baton Rouge, LA
Birmingham, AL
Miami, FL
Bradenton, FL
Orlando, FL
Jacksonville, FL
Columbia, SC
Louisville, KY
Dayton, OH
Akron, OH
Grand Rapids, MI
Allentown, PA
Richmond, VA
Norfork, VA
Providence, RI
Rochester, NY
Poughkeepsie, NY
Albany, NY
Springfield, MA
Worcester, MA

Canadian Markets:
Calgary
Winnipeg
Hamilton
Ottawa
Montreal
Quebec City

Now the map already indicates future expansion clubs like Portland and Vancouver for those wondering. Looking at some of these markets though it is quite laughable to think a MLS team would be a good idea in Little Rock (no offense to those from that area that read this site). It is interesting to see some areas on the map that aren’t indicated as a good fit for expansion like Detroit, St. Louis, Charlotte or Cary, NC, and Tampa Bay (duh).

Interestingly enough in Ohio instead of expected cities on the list like Cleveland or Cincinnati we get Akron and Dayton. Weird.

Seeing cities like Montreal on the map only adds a little more fuel to the fire for it’s expansion bid into the league.

Looking at the map though I can’t help but think the league won’t even come close to expanding to even more than four of these potential cities.  While some of these cities are great towns to visit they just aren’t good sports markets in general. Potential markets do need lots of cash in them like this report talks about but more importantly these cities need to have a lot of big businesses in them, like Fortune 500 companies. Why do you think sports in markets like LA or Chicago work? Because there are enough big money people to make it happen. We won’t see enough big money in a town like Grand Rapids, Michigan right now.

Its a fun debate that will mostly get people talking again but that’s about it. Which market though on the list above would you like to see the most?

  • jumpedcut

    Ha, I live in LIttle Rock and would love to see a team here, but there's no way that would ever happen…

  • jumpedcut

    Ha, I live in LIttle Rock and would love to see a team here, but there's no way that would ever happen…

  • evan eleven

    this is interesting but i really can't see how they came up with some of these cities, and there's no explanation given other than income and being "over-extended". no St. Louis, Atlanta, Minnesota, or Milwaukee? how does that make sense? i guess they assume if a city has too many sports teams already they won't support a soccer team? i think that's a false assumption, i don't really give a damn about the other sports and probably a lot of other soccer fans don't either…

  • Alex

    Austin looks interesting, but I doubt the league wants 3 teams in Texas right now. The article also reveals why the Texas Rangers are so bad every year – it turns out they're actually a hockey team, apparently.

  • Alex

    Austin looks interesting, but I doubt the league wants 3 teams in Texas right now.

    The article also reveals why the Texas Rangers are so bad every year – it turns out they're actually a hockey team, apparently.

  • Steve

    Honolulu, Las Vegas or Miami. However, I think that Las Vegas is best suited for an NFL or NBA team. Something that people can come and be touristy or party like with.

  • Steve

    Honolulu, Las Vegas or Miami. However, I think that Las Vegas is best suited for an NFL or NBA team. Something that people can come and be touristy or party like with.