"The fans in Raleigh have enveloped the team and become passionate about the sport. It's a long winter without that passion, so these fans are going to look for a place to go," said Darren McLean, of the
Fayetteville Fire Antz
The Fayetteville Fire Antz are part of the Southern Professional Hockey League. At the Crown Coliseum, the dashers are going up. The ice will go down in a week. The Antz are getting ready for opening night.
The team believes the NHL lockout will bring Triangle hockey fans to Fayetteville.
"Selfishly, it's good for us, but terrible for the sport," McLean said.
The team thinks its roster will benefit as well. Through the trickle-down effect, some Double-A players will now be available to play.
The Hurricane Boosters Club is planning a road trip. Other Triangle fans are calling for the Antz schedule. Antz fans see an opportunity for their team to score.
"I think once someone comes out and experiences the game and crowds, they will fall in love with it like I have and hopefully, it will increase crowd size for us," Antz fan Bill Strickland said.
The home opener for the Antz is Oct. 29. Tickets range from $11 to $16.
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