By: Kayla Sturdevant
Houston represents itself through sports teams like the Texans, Astros, and Rockets. But what about people who love the ice?
Although they did not reign very popular, the Houston Aeros proudly represented the Houston area in the American Hockey League. Although it resembles a minor league when compared to the prominent National Hockey League, the American Hockey League actually shows a smaller, less popular selection of hockey teams who don’t compete against more well-known teams such as the Dallas Stars.
This all may sound like new information but some people in the area can explain it without blinking an eye.
“I love the sense of community in the sport and how connected you become to the team and fellow fans,” A hockey fan and student of Texas Virtual Academy, Nicky Pownell discusses. “It was always a huge part of my life as I went to Flyers games all the time growing up in Philadelphia.”
Shifting into the mindset of a Houstonian, Pownell shares her knowledge of the Houston team. Pownell said, “Derek Boogaard was once an Aeros player; he was an eventual NHL Enforcer who suffered many concussions and died of a drug overdose. His death, as well as those of other players, sparked much controversy over the safety of fighting in the game.”
Unfortunately, the Aeros moved to Iowa in 2013 to become the Iowa Wild hockey team. “Hockey is reportedly one of the fastest growing sports.” Pownell said, “To have a team in Houston, the fourth largest city in America, would only serve to expand the game even further.”
Also, another young hockey fan, Juliette Patterson, enjoys following the [scores and stats] of other teams.
“It’s fun to keep up with different teams and their stats,” Patterson said. “It’s especially fun to keep up with hometown teams.”
Interestingly, Patterson believes that the move related to issues greater the number of fans.
“[They] moved because of location issues, not poor attendance,” Patterson suggested. And she, “would love for Houston to get a hockey team again.”
Currently Houston does not have a representative in the AHL or NFL which reigns extremely unfortunate to hockey fans in the area. Hopefully a new team will form in the near future.