The Houston Aeros Are No More, R.I.P.

Categories: Hockey, Sports

Aero_Final.JPG
John Royal
Aeros players interact with the crowd following the team's last ever regular season home game.
The Houston Aeros lost 7-0 to the Grand Rapids Griffins in Grand Rapids on Saturday night. With the loss the Aeros are done for this season, having lost the deciding game of round one of the AHL Calder Cup playoffs. And with the loss, the Houston Aeros are done in Houston. They are no more.

The next time the Aeros play hockey, their home rink will be the Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa, and the team will be known as the Iowa Wild. And come October, for the first time in 20 years, the city of Houston will not be hosting professional hockey games.

About ten days ago, just before the start of the playoffs, some Toyota Center flunkies came down to the team's locker room and after practice, they were grabbing players and asking them for their favorite memories to help commemorate the tenth anniversary of Toyota Center. One of the players, not to be named, responded with a puzzled "We're leaving, right?"

The Aeros were never appreciated by their Toyota Center landlords. Toyota Center officials reportedly requested a 300 percent increase over the team's already above-market-rate rent. The condition of the ice has always been questionable. There were problems with the team gaining access to the building. The brand-new big-boy video board malfunctioned often on the Aeros. The ticket system crashed right before the final regular season home game, stranding thousands of fans outside the arena because they could not claim their will-call tickets.

The bad guy is not the Aeros. The owner of the team, the Minnesota Wild, did not want to move the team. There was a good fan base in Houston, there were nice facilities and there was easy access to two large airports that could get players to wherever they needed to get them whenever they needed to get them there. But despite their best efforts, the Aeros just could not get a reasonable deal from Toyota Center.

There's kind of a strange karma issue involving Les Alexander, who runs Toyota Center, and the Rockets and the Aeros, and the whole CSN Houston debacle. The Aeros and the team's fans are suffering from the unreasonableness of Alexander and his lease demands just as Alexander and Rockets fans are suffering from the unreasonableness of Jim Crane and the Astros.

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63 comments
Tony Morrison
Tony Morrison

That one time when owner of the Rockettes decided to push out hockey from Houston. Hockey has always been the greatest, the players are some of the most humble people I ever met.

Kevin Wiseman
Kevin Wiseman

I was at the 1999 turner cup final game 7 when the areos won in a shootout for their first IHL title. It was the best hockey game I have ever attended. The old summit was so loud I thought the building was going to fall apart

Alethea Drexler
Alethea Drexler

Hey, Houston loved them. Don't blame us for the jerks at Toyota Center.

Jj Stevens
Jj Stevens

Perhaps the best was returning from evening grad school @ SFA to near Huntsville, and picking up after the newborn while watching end of game or catching the replay...sweeter than the Howes growing up, or even Gordie's last shift...

kleindienst
kleindienst

They were great while they lasted. I'll miss the Aeros

Eddy Parisi
Eddy Parisi

Too bad Houston had that great sport and no one here ever got how cool it was and what a shame Houston did not support hem by going to the games!!!

Jason Coker
Jason Coker

The greed of Les Alexander is sickening. Thanks for ruining the best sports team in Houston jerk!

Geoff Widmier
Geoff Widmier

I really enjoyed the game I went to in 1994. I honestly kept meaning to go to another game, but never heard anything about the season starting. I didn't even know they were playing this year until a week ago. I have to put most of the blame for that on the Aeros having inept promotions. To0 bad.

David Aulds
David Aulds

Joel Osteen and his church is not a CULT you fning moron. Go get rid of your " OPEN MINDED " liberal butt!!!

David Aulds
David Aulds

Aeros won 2 WHA titles, 1 IHL title and one AHL title. 4 championships total!!!

Jared Meadors
Jared Meadors

I was there at those games, too. :) With my dad. That's about the only thing I remember doing with him besides hunting and fishing. For some reason, he loved hockey. He took my brother and I back to the locker room after one game and got the whole team to sign a broken stick from the game. I think it's still stuck in an attic somewhere.

Nancy Stewart
Nancy Stewart

Every time they beat the CHICAGO WOLVES - especially at the AllState Arena in Illinois!!!

Nick Lineback
Nick Lineback

i'd like to give Leslie Alexander a piece of my mind. What a two timing jack ass wind bag.

Jason Gardner
Jason Gardner

What does hockey have to do with people being poor? How about you look at the poor choices that lead most poor people to their current position in life.

Steve McKnight
Steve McKnight

Jared, I'll never forget being a kid and seeing Gordy Howe, "Mr. Hockey" play with his two sons, Mark and Marty. He was in his forties and he was a bad mother f#%cker. Mark Howe won Rookie of the Year. I didn't know shit about hockey, but they were fun to watch.

datakaput
datakaput

This sucks, I will miss the Aeros.  The only sport I care about will no longer be in Houston so back to not spending money in Houston Sports, I will redirect my funds to more local small venue music events!  Keepin my money local and small SCREW YOU TOYOTA CENTER!

Brian Ramsey
Brian Ramsey

Me and my dad use to go to many a games at the Summit.

Brian Ramsey
Brian Ramsey

Wish Sugarland or the Woodlands would build a 5k to 7500 seat arena and bring in CHL or ECHL team.

Heather Jimenez
Heather Jimenez

This makes me so sad for all of you Aeros fans! As a die hard fan of our ECHL team, I can't begin to imagine the heart break I'd feel if our team ceased to exist. My hear goes out to all of you!!!

Denise Cardozo
Denise Cardozo

The Aeros were an Awesome Houston team, so sorry they are gone now! Enjoyed every game I ever went to!!!

Christopher Carr
Christopher Carr

....when i was little my dad( John Carlisle Carr) n his buddies n i tried to steal this huge rug when it was called the summit.... awwesome memory

bernerf
bernerf

Hockey is the equivalent to NASCAR for Yankees.

Joseph DeFazio
Joseph DeFazio

and all other forms of entertainment! No TV shows or movies! No facebook or IPhones either!! Right?

Andrew Sanchez
Andrew Sanchez

Stands were always empty. You could have a Nose bleed ticket and sit by the glass

Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson

OK, seriously, the nachos story should win an award, because that is awesome.

Jim Costello
Jim Costello

I remember during the inaugural season, 1994-5, the Atlanta Knights brought 3 bus loads of fans with them. The Aeros throttled the Knights and we chanted at the quiet and huddled Atlanta throng. I ran through their buses post game yelling like an idiot and was high fived by some old lady and a cop. FUN!

Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson

That they went to the playoffs way more often than any other Houston team is my favorite memory too!

Kelly Hunt
Kelly Hunt

I am SO GOING TO MISS THEM!! We have been taking our kids to the Aero games for all 19 years. Our daughter grew up with them and now she is in college. Our son is 10. We so wanted the same for him. They will always be our Aero team with love and support. It will be difficult to say Wild but I will root for them and hopefully see them in their away games in either San Antonio or Cedar Park. Maybe even fly to Des Moines for a home game. Best of luck to the players, coaches and support staff. Also Toyota Center and Les Alexander, Rockets are banned from my family as family events.

Buddy Englett
Buddy Englett

Good riddance; IMHO all professional sports should be put on indefinite hold until every citizen is above the poverty level.

Ian Henderson
Ian Henderson

Great... Now in order to see a hockey game we have to commute to Austin or Dallas or even San Antonio. So much for Cheap Sporting Events. This is some straight bull. All because Les Alexander is a greedy punk. I am boycotting Toyota Center.

Katherine Aubry
Katherine Aubry

First hockey game I ever saw; Aeros first game in the Summit. I still have my "Inagural Season Ticket Holder" puck.

Mandi Potchernick
Mandi Potchernick

I will miss the Aero's; lots of great memories with them. Shame hockey isn't a bigger sport in Houston.

Jeremy Bulloch
Jeremy Bulloch

Most oh Houston didn't even know we HAD a hockey team.

Taylor Roccaforte
Taylor Roccaforte

As a kid, I went to almost every game in the 99-2000 season... Including the game when they won the 99' Turner Cup. Such great memories I'll never forget.

Melissa Marie Young
Melissa Marie Young

In my younger days, I bought my husband two tickets against the glass. He was always an avid sports fan. While trying to dress for our date, I had never been to a hockey game before and I wore a polka dot sun dress with spaghetti straps. I was uncomfortable because I quickly learned that EVERYONE else was dressed with warm attire. Although, it worked in our favor because, like the movies, the player from the other team kept looking at me and he wound up getting slammed against the plexiglass. We still laugh about that day. I did learn to appreciate the sport & enjoyed Houston having an hockey team. Sorry to see them go. :-( Thanks for the memories! :-))

Cyndel Savard
Cyndel Savard

RIP Houston Aeros! See ya'll in Iowa1 :) Hopefully the team stays just as great as Houston, it all meanings of terms. You're always be in my heart!

Dylan Gomez
Dylan Gomez

dude this is super lame. I remember being a kid and they put onw of the opposing teams players in the penalty box and this chick threw a whole thing on nachos on his head. Then he started talkin shit to her and everyone was bangin on his window daring him to so something about. then another game a puck flew out and hit an old guy in the head medics came.. but now no more

John Chance McKay
John Chance McKay

I went to one game, and was the only Guy that came back for the forth quarter.

thhoque10
thhoque10

@David Aulds no...definitely a cult! "open your mind" so you can seeeeee the truth!

abcd
abcd

@bernerf Yes, they skate in a large circle for three hours.

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