While the Detroit Red Wings lease at Joe Louis Arena is expiring soon, Wings owner Mike Ilitch decided to let folks know that the Wings will stay at the Joe for the time being.
“They’ll probably play their games at the Joe, because, you know, it takes time to get things done,” Ilitch said. “Things are pretty complicated. There’s some options on what we can do, and we’ve been thinking about them.
“The market’s pretty bleak out there as far as building, but we’re still going to get it done. We just have to show a little bit more patience.”
Ilitch has made no bones about wanting to have a new arena for the Red Wings built within the city, and after seeing two of the city’s other three major sports tenants all have new facilities built for them recently (the NBA’s Pistons play in Auburn Hills, Michigan). Given how much success the Wings have had compared to both the Tigers and Lions, it would seem logical that the Wings be rewarded with a grand sparkling facility. Alas, with things being as tough as they are economically speaking, the city isn’t in a big hurry to help Ilitch drop hundreds of millions of dollars into a new sporting facility and you can’t exactly blame them for it.
That said, go ahead and find me another organization in Detroit that’s been as successful as the Red Wings and then perhaps we could start arguing about who should really get rewarded. Perhaps they can just make the Lions play football on Michigan Avenue and move the Red Wings into Ford Field to make up for that egregious error in judgment.*
* – Yes, I am a Lions fan. Pity will be accepted in the comment section.