Joe Louis Arena is the oldest venue in the NHL, but The City Of Detroit is in deep financial debt, stemming back to Kwame Killpatrick’s 8 year run as mayor in the Motor City.
Earlier this March, Kevyn Orr took over as Emergency Financial Manager of Detroit, appointed by Rick Snyder (Michigan Governor). In the midst of Detroit’s deep debt, Orr has to make key decisions, but said “We can’t avoid bankruptcy unless something drastic happens” ¬†in a town hall meeting with City partners he told Mike Ilitch and family that if bankruptcy happens the Arena of the Detroit Red Wings would be sold as a city asset.
Joe Louis Arena is owned by the City Of Detroit, and The Detroit Red Wings have played there since 1980. The Red Wings have announced plans to build a new arena in Detroit but have not broke ground on the new arena as of yet. Bill Shea of Crains Detroit said Detroit will begin construction on the Red Wings’ new arena in the fall, but the Red Wings lease contract ends at the end of the 2014 season, which means if Joe Louis Arena is sold, the Red Wings could be homeless.
Some people think Detroit will play games at the Palace of Auburn Hills until the new arena is ready, or the State of Michigan will step in and buy the Arena – if those two ideas fail, the Wings could play at Yost Ice Arena, home of the Michigan Wolverines.
One of the best teams in the last 20 years faces the tough reality of being homeless due to the City close to filling for bankruptcy.
Photo credit: Stadium Love