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An Alternate History

Messages
12,516
I think the regions are the life blood.

Illawarra, Newcastle, Canberra, NQ.
Sydney has always taken from them.

The game’s future is regional and not suburban.
 
Messages
12,516
Interesting point is that pre-1988, the QRL backed a Jeans West consortium for NSWRL,

Nek Minnit the Barry Maranta Broncos were flavour of the week.
Gold Coast Giants were an after thought too.
 
Messages
7,543
I think the regions are the life blood.

Illawarra, Newcastle, Canberra, NQ.
Sydney has always taken from them.

The game’s future is regional and not suburban.

I agree although I don’t consider these areas “regional” as such, they all house cities - just not recognised as such coz many of “us Australians” only consider state capitals as “real cities”...

By comparison - many US cities who have Big4 sports teams have a population less than half a million...eg..

Green Bay
New Orleans
Minneapolis
Tampa Bay
Pittsburgh
Cincinnati
Cleveland
Orlando

Yes, the proximity of these Australian cities to others is far greater, and some US cities have a larger population base surrounding their “metro areas”... but to me that doesn’t matter.

These “regional cities” are indeed some of the biggest supported clubs in the NRL. Newcastle a prime example.

If it remained the NSWRL with Sydney centric clubs the comp would be as dead as it was back in the 70’s. The revenue of the game would be pitiful. You’re effectively like France in WW2 waving the white flag letting the Germans (Sports like AFL) invade and conquer.

Expansion to these areas outside Sydney has been a fantastic step. But many Sydney-siders don’t see the value in it coz “it’s not in Sydney”.... to me that’s like France in the 40’s... and it’s already started.... the invaders are rife...

the comp needs a strong Sydney component but it also needs cities outside Sydney. If you’re not growing you’re dying. Sydney’s clubs aren’t where the growth is....
 
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Pippen94

Juniors
Messages
444
I agree although I don’t consider these areas “regional” as such, they all house cities - just not recognised as such coz many of “us Australians” only consider state capitals as “real cities”...

By comparison - many US cities who have Big4 sports teams have a population less than half a million...eg..

Green Bay
New Orleans
Minneapolis
Tampa Bay
Pittsburgh
Cincinnati
Cleveland
Orlando

Yes, the proximity of these Australian cities to others is far greater, and some US cities have a larger population base surrounding their “metro areas”... but to me that doesn’t matter.

These “regional cities” are indeed some of the biggest supported clubs in the NRL. Newcastle a prime example.

If it remained the NSWRL with Sydney centric clubs the comp would be as dead as it was back in the 70’s. The revenue of the game would be pitiful. You’re effectively like France in WW2 waving the white flag letting the Germans (Sports like AFL) invade and conquer.

Expansion to these areas outside Sydney has been a fantastic step. But many Sydney-siders don’t see the value in it coz “it’s not in Sydney”.... to me that’s like France in the 40’s... and it’s already started.... the invaders are rife...

the comp needs a strong Sydney component but it also needs cities outside Sydney. If you’re not growing you’re dying. Sydney’s clubs aren’t where the growth is....

Why can't ppl fact check before posting. All of those places are part of urban places with populations well over a million or just below. In Australia only two non captials have populations over 500k; GC & Newcastle with around 600k each although that's casting a wide net.

To say we need to remove Sydney sides while regionals struggle more is a double standard.

Ask yourself why no NRL team has moved to gosford already if Sydney is overcrowded. Answer is sponsors & businesses rather focus on Sydney which is just south & allows them to reach city with population of 6 million.
 
Messages
7,543
Why can't ppl fact check before posting. All of those places are part of urban places with populations well over a million or just below. In Australia only two non captials have populations over 500k; GC & Newcastle with around 600k each although that's casting a wide net.

To say we need to remove Sydney sides while regionals struggle more is a double standard.

Ask yourself why no NRL team has moved to gosford already if Sydney is overcrowded. Answer is sponsors & businesses rather focus on Sydney which is just south & allows them to reach city with population of 6 million.

Why cant people check facts before they accuse others of not checking facts...

https://worldpopulationreview.com/us-counties

And why can’t people actually read the post of someone else which gives context and reference to their own argument already, proximities in & population bases outside the metro areas of cities in Aus vs USA...

And why can’t people actually understand the context of a thread topic, thus the context of the hypothetical thread responses... rather than confuse / ignore them with their own world view...

A hypothetical expansion strategy back in the 1980’s vs an expansion strategy set here in the year 2021 is a completely different thing. And no answer is correct or incorrect, it’s an opinion, and a detailed response from you to the actuall forum question I’ve yet to see...

I guess some people just can’t help themselves in constantly looking to pick forum arguments and pumping up their own tires..... without putting forward their own thoughts and full response to a hypothetical forum question like this...
 

Pippen94

Juniors
Messages
444
Why cant people check facts before they accuse others of not checking facts...

https://worldpopulationreview.com/us-counties

And why can’t people actually read the post of someone else which gives context and reference to their own argument already, proximities in & population bases outside the metro areas of cities in Aus vs USA...

And why can’t people actually understand the context of a thread topic, thus the context of the hypothetical thread responses... rather than confuse / ignore them with their own world view...

A hypothetical expansion strategy back in the 1980’s vs an expansion strategy set here in the year 2021 is a completely different thing. And no answer is correct or incorrect, it’s an opinion, and a detailed response from you to the actuall forum question I’ve yet to see...

I guess some people just can’t help themselves in constantly looking to pick forum arguments and pumping up their own tires..... without putting forward their own thoughts and full response to a hypothetical forum question like this...

That's just city limits & doesn't include sprawl around it. Kinda like excluding Penrith or Campbelltown in Sydney population.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_urban_areas
 

Pippen94

Juniors
Messages
444
Why cant people check facts before they accuse others of not checking facts...

https://worldpopulationreview.com/us-counties

And why can’t people actually read the post of someone else which gives context and reference to their own argument already, proximities in & population bases outside the metro areas of cities in Aus vs USA...

And why can’t people actually understand the context of a thread topic, thus the context of the hypothetical thread responses... rather than confuse / ignore them with their own world view...

A hypothetical expansion strategy back in the 1980’s vs an expansion strategy set here in the year 2021 is a completely different thing. And no answer is correct or incorrect, it’s an opinion, and a detailed response from you to the actuall forum question I’ve yet to see...

I guess some people just can’t help themselves in constantly looking to pick forum arguments and pumping up their own tires..... without putting forward their own thoughts and full response to a hypothetical forum question like this...

That's just city limits & doesn't include sprawl around it. Kinda like excluding Penrith or Campbelltown in Sydney population.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_urban_areas
 
Messages
7,543

Pippen94

Juniors
Messages
444
I guess some people just can’t help themselves in constantly looking to pick forum arguments and pumping up their own tires..... without putting forward their own thoughts and full response to a hypothetical forum question like this...

Metro areas below in millions;
Green Bay 1.4
New Orleans 0.9
Minneapolis 2.6
Tampa Bay 2.4
Pittsburgh 1.6
Cincinnati 1.7
Cleveland 1.7
Orlando 1.5
 
Messages
4,734
Metro areas below in millions;
Green Bay 1.4
New Orleans 0.9
Minneapolis 2.6
Tampa Bay 2.4
Pittsburgh 1.6
Cincinnati 1.7
Cleveland 1.7
Orlando 1.5
A lot of those cities have hundreds of thousands, or even millions, more living within driving distance of the metro area as well.
 
Messages
4,734
I guess some people just can’t help themselves in constantly looking to pick forum arguments and pumping up their own tires..... without putting forward their own thoughts and full response to a hypothetical forum question like this...
You said something factually inaccurate, you were corrected.

Stop sooking about it and try learning from it instead.
 
Messages
4,734
Haha hello there Dane!

Great to hear from you.

I've still yet to see a proposal to the thread question..
I have no interest in presenting a pointless hypothetical that has no value to real world discussions, but if I did I’d expect it to be criticised and wouldn’t be intellectually bankrupt enough to think saying ‘it’s muh opinion man’ means that I’m beyond reproach.
 

Hartwood

Juniors
Messages
38
I have no interest in presenting a pointless hypothetical that has no value to real world discussions, but if I did I’d expect it to be criticised and wouldn’t be intellectually bankrupt enough to think saying ‘it’s muh opinion man’ means that I’m beyond reproach.
Then ignore this thread, it's not for you
 

MugaB

Bench
Messages
3,223
Theoretically, if you were in charge of the NSWRL during 1980s, how would you have planned your expansion of the game?

Going back to 1982, the Canberra Raiders, the first expansion side in the NSWRL was founded, along with the VFL's first expansion side, the Sydney Swans.



1981 NSWRFL current teams

Eastern Suburbs

Newtown

South Sydney

Penrith

Manly-Warringah

North Sydney

Parramatta

Canterbury-Bankstown

St George

Western Suburbs

Balmain

Cronulla

Teams that were introduced in 1982

Illawarra

Canberra


Firstly, obviously way too many Sydney sides here, the NRL would eventually solve this issue in the '90s and '00s with half baked 'mergers'.

Using a bit of hindsight, but being reasonable, here's what I would have done:

How 1982 should have been

Eastern Suburbs/Sydney City Roosters

The Roosters would remain as the main eastern suburbs side

South Sydney Rabbitohs
I would have ideally booted Souths, as it seems unnecessary to have two sides based out of Eastern Sydney, however the NRL would eventually try this in 2000 and it didn't go well. Most Souths fans live out west so maybe they could play in parra or blacktown or smthn idk

Parramatta Eels
Second most supported Sydney team in the large region

Macarthur Magpies
The Western Suburbs Magpies would rebrand as the Macarthur magpies, Wests eventually moved to Campbelltown in 1987 anyway so I'm just making the transition smoother

St George Dragons
Taking in the Southern Sydney region

Illawarra Sharks
Southern Sydney is too small for two teams, NSWRL obviously wanted a team in Illawarra. I would expect this team would evetually merge with St George, just as the Steelers did

Penrith Panthers

North Sydney Bears

Incorporating the entire North Sydney region

Gosford Sea-Eagles
Similar situation as the Illawarra Sharks, probably unsustainable, would probably merge with North Sydney

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Not sure how neccessary Canterbury would be because I don't know much about Sydney geography

Canberra Tigers
Tigers to Canberra

Brisbane Past Brothers Leprechauns
Two Brisbane sides introduced, both Brisbane city BRL teams. Rugby league already has a deep history in Brisbane, so using BRL teams rather than a bid team or relocation means that the team already has a supporter base and a history within the city. Leprechauns is an original name that is rarely used in sport, unlike the generic, American "Broncos"

Fortitude Valley Diehards

Create a rivalry with the 'chauns, another great original name. Would have to change their colours so they don't clash with the next side

Melbourne Jets
If the VFL can get a team in Sydney by 1982, then there can be a professional rugby league side in Melbourne as well. Jets got booted in 1983 anyway, might as well move them to Melbourne. Hipster Suburb team into Hipster city


Future Expansions
In order of priority

Auckland Warriors

Western Reds

NQ Razerbacks

Cowboys is a dumb American name

Adelaide Rams

Gold Coast Dolphins
Titans is also not a great name, atleast it isn't American sounding, Redcliffe can either suck it up or join with GC

NZ2

Equatorial/Tropical/Northern Buffalos

Based out of Darwin playing half their games in PNG
Well this is mostly shít, if you're starting to keep certain teams like roosters but not others like souths or merge sharks and steelers, then say you know nothing about sydneys geography, then why bother beliving in a hypothetical "Alternate History"
Plus why bring up Newtown jets as interstate expansion really started around after they left the 1st grade comp.

For me, if I'm the NSWRL, or more actually ARL at the time where the expansion into certain areas became the issue, it needed to focus on where the game is played, and where it could grow, initially Canberra wasn't good on field until around 1987, where an influx if Qld talent joined their roster, then they became a powerhouse over the next decade, same happened a year or two later with the broncos too, and later on had superleague not mucked things up maybe even the warriors would have had some more success, one thing is clear even though, both the competitions agreed in making expansion into Melbourne, i just wished it wasn't at the expense of the reds.
As far as mergers, Souths/Sharks and Easts/Tigers, Wests/Bulldogs should have all been looked at, before the mergers that went on. Even letting bears in CC, and St.George/Illawarra come to pass (which happened) were great ideas as it spread the reach of both those clubs to regional areas, somewhat to liken what penrith has does regarding the central west tablelands. All in all
Sydney would be=
Eastern Suburbs Tigers,(Sydney City Tigers)
Southern Sydney Sharks,
Western Suburbs Bulldogs,
Parramatta Eels,
Manly Sea Eagles,
Illawarra Dragons,
Penrith Panthers,
Northern Sydney Bears.

Newcastle Knights,
Canberra Raiders,
Brisbane Broncos,
North Qld Cowboys,
Auckland Warriors,
Perth Western Reds,
Adelaide Rams,
Melbourne Storm,
Gold Coast Titans,
Sunshine State Dolphins,
P.N.G Pride,
South Pacific Cyclones.
 
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Nuke

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
4,225
For mine, with complete hindsight, the way to have done the NRL back in, say, 1980 would be to basically start a brand new competition above the then-NSWRFL & BRL/QRL comps.

I say this knowing such long-term future planning would have been nearly impossible given, at the time, the comps were locally based only.

Get a group of game-first,personal-alliegiances-aside type of people together. Form a national comp governing body. Then start a A-League / BBL type of location-based comp with the view to become national within 15 years. No 100yr old clubs with heaps of history and traditionalists who won't budge on their view of something that could be new and innovative.

New clubs.

In 1980, you'd logically have to start where League is the strongest: 2-3 in the larger Sydney area, 2-3 in the larger Brisbane area, 2-3 in NSW/ACT outside of Sydney, and 1-2 in non-Brisbane QLD. To be daring, with new big markets in mind, add in one from Melbourne. Perth and Auckland to come in within that 15yr period.
(I suggest the Melbournes, Perths, and Aucklands, as they were large-and-growing population areas where NSWRL Winfield Cup games were taken to in that same period of time in the 'real' world).

So by 1995, you'd have clubs based at:
* Sydney (southern, eastern & CBD area)
* Western Sydney / foot-of-the-mountains area
* Northern Sydney
* greater Brisbane area
* Northern Brisbane
* Southern Brisbane / Southern Qld (GC)
* Newcastle / CC
* Canberra
* Wollongong / south coast
* Townsville
* Cairns?
* Melbourne

That's a 12 team comp to start it off. Each area, bar Melbs, to use the existing local clubs / catchment areas as feeders.

By the early to mid 1990s, add in:
* Perth
* Auckland

14 teams now. Dots on the map. No 'x' area / city centric (which inevitably would happen whether NSWRL or QLD expanded into becoming the national league).

By early to mid 2000s, Adelaide, NZ2, PNG, ect, could all be practically vying to be added in. Maybe another regional Qld team, giving us full Australia and NZ coverage and a maximum of 18 teams.

Now, I'm fully aware that doing all this 41yrs ago removes the great tribalism League has, especially in the first several years, and it would have taken a LOT of money and radical thinking at the time (plus all the criticism that would accompany it all). But had this all happened, think of where we could be at now. For example, the Western Sydney team, encompassing the areas that currently have Penrith, Parramatta, Canterbury, Wests, ect, could quite possibly be getting 40-50,000 crowds, the other Sydney clubs 30-40,000 each, Brisbane 50,000 odd, strong NZ rivalry, 30,000 odd in Perth, Newcastle, Melbourne, Townsville, ect.
Local rivals, interstate rivalry, ect.

Had all this happened at the time, aussie rules would have been playing catchup and we may possibly be now in the much stronger position of the two. Union would be quite a ways further behind us too.

But anyway. It didn't happen. And given the nature of the game, the clubs, and the fans, it's pretty much too late to do this now.
 
Messages
3,487
There should have been a new comp setup with the best NSWRL clubs and the best BRL clubs for the 1988 season instead of introducing the Broncos and Gold Coast and then expanded from there:

1988: New ARL 10 Team Comp formed:
Parramatta & Canterbury (Western Sydney)
South Sydney & St George Illawarra (South Sydney and Wollongong)
Sydney Roosters & North Sydney (the affluent eastern and northern suburbs)
Redcliffe Dolphins
Brisbane Tigers
Ipswich Jets
Canberra Raiders

1995: Expansion to 12 Teams:
Perth Reds
Newcastle Knights

2000: Expansion to 14 Teams:
Melbourne Storm
North QLD Cowboys

2005: Expansion to 16 Teams
Auckland Warriors
Gold Coast Titans

2010: Expansion to 18 Teams:

Adelaide Rams
Christchurch Bulls
 
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