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AHL Abbotsford sets record with two goals in three seconds, continues to lose millions for city

Nov 2, 2012, 2:45 PM EDT

Abbotsford Heat

The AHL’s Abbotsford Heat set a record Thursday night by scoring two goals in three seconds on Toronto Marlies goalie Ben Scrivens.

The first goal came courtesy Steve McCarthy at 4:28 of the third period. Then, right after the ensuing faceoff, Ben Street sent a long shot down the ice that beat Scrivens at 4:31.

Even more impressive? Both goals were scored shorthanded.

Considerably less impressive? Only 1,951 fans were there to see it.

In a related story, the city’s taxpayers will once again have to foot the bill for a season’s worth of the team’s losses, this time to the tune of $1.76 million.

From the Abbotsford Times:

The average attendance required to meet the break-even point is 3,905 paid customers; the paid customer base in 2011/12 was 2,653, according to the city.

The Heat ownership group has a 10-year supply fee agreement with the city that guarantees $5.7 million in annual revenue.

The 2011/12 shortfall follows a payout of $1,305,511 for the 2010/11 season and $450,637 in the team’s inaugural 2009/2010 year.

Considering Abbotsford is about an hour’s drive east of Vancouver, it’s not overly surprising the AHL affiliate of the Calgary Flames has struggled for fan support.

In August, it was reported that Canucks owner Francesco Aquilini was looking to purchase the Heat’s arena from the city and work out a deal to move Vancouver’s farm team (currently the AHL’s Chicago Wolves) closer to home.

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