Montreal is a proud city that has a lot to offer anyone who visits the area, from its rich culture to fine architecture. As well as that, the locals are passionate and excited about their sport. The MLS side Montreal Impact attract decent crowds, but there’s no denying that the main love for the people of Montreal comes in the form of ice hockey, with the successful Montreal Canadiens at the heart of everything.
Yet, despite boasting a huge population and a real love for sport, the 24-time Stanley Cup winners are the only team from the city to compete in what is considered the ‘Big Four’ sports leagues, which is the NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB.
Clearly, that doesn’t add up, and it’s something that needs addressing. Not only does the city have the fanbase for a successful team to thrive, but it also has the facilities and potential for growth that should make it so appealing to franchise owners. The Bell Centre has already been sounded out as the perfect venue for an expansion team, and there should be a feeling that if you could get a side to really take off, then Montreal would be a great destination in terms of that backing that you need.
And, perhaps the first team that should be considered is an NBA team. The Toronto Raptors have done Canada proud in the past, particularly recently, with their performances, and it has shown that there is an appetite for the sport in the country.
Yet, that interest is just going one way right now. For those in the country, whether you want to get involved by using William Hill NBA betting for Canadians, visit stadiums or buy merchandise, the only team that you can get behind at the highest level is the Raptors.
Not only would bringing a side to Montreal step up the interest for the locals but it also has the potential to create a rivalry with the Raptors that could elevate the sport to another level in Canada as they both look to compete with the very best, as well as each other.
Of course, what we are suggesting is nothing new and unfortunately, key figures at the NBA addressed this issue towards the end of 2018. The general consensus was that there was no need for the league to expand, and it seemed as though nothing is on the horizon in terms of starting up a team in Montreal. Ultimately though, that is not a decision that needs to be set in stone, and there should be encouragement for a team to be set up in Montreal as the sporting benefits are clear to see.
Unfortunately, to the people that matter it can often only be about money, and if the right numbers aren’t put up then it’s hard to see this changing in the immediate future. However, that’s not to say it should be ruled out forever, and if the decision is reversed you can be sure that the people of Montreal will be ready to throw themselves behind a new NBA side.