When you think of professional sports cities in the Carolinas Raleigh isn’t always at the top of mind. With the Panthers, Hornets, Knights, and other teams a lot of people think of Charlotte. And across the country, if you’re thinking of Raleigh hockey probably isn’t the first thing you think of. But Raleigh did in fact make the 2022 Top Hockey Cities List. In fact, it cracked the top 15. I’ll be honest as a huge sports fan (mainly college and NFL), and actually, as someone who lived in Raleigh for several years, hockey really isn’t my thing. I did go to my first Hurricanes game this year and enjoyed it more than I thought it was. It’s also very obvious that the city loves it. That fanbase is passionate and PNC Arena is constantly packed.
And they are pretty good. The Hurricanes did advance to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs this year but lost in game 7 to the New York Rangers. Coincidentally New York also topped Raleigh on this hockey cities list.
Who came up with this? Well, WalletHub is responsible for creating the list of best places for hockey enthusiasts. They ranked 72 U.S. cities based on 21 key indicators of a good hockey city. This includes ticket prices to stadium capacity to the performance level of each city’s teams. The full methodology is at the end of this article. Read on to see where exactly Raleigh ranked and which city took the top spot on the list. (And even as a less than casual hockey fan 1 and 2 didn’t surprise me!)