Email Marc

Blog Tags


Archives

Saturday, September 02, 2006

And the winner is...

Since it's one of the worst-kept secrets in recent history, I'll go ahead and state it for the rest of the hockey world that's out of the loop... The winner of the NAHL Commissioner Sweepstakes is Eric Krupka. Who is Eric Krupka, you may ask? Look at my ads over in the right margin (consider this my disclosure, since it's obvious I do business with him) - Krupka is the EHK of EHK Sports. Having discussed my assessment of the NAHL to Krupka and what is needed, I think he's a pretty good choice. As I've mentioned in the past, the league faces a serious lack of organizational alignment, with perhaps a dozen or more different missions and visions depending on which owner you ask. Krupka needs to take these different messages and mold them into a single voice. At the same time, he needs to improve the perception of the league by stakeholders - players, parents, fans, and other hockey administrative officials. But clearly, I think Krupka's biggest strength will be in targeting corporate sponsors. Krupka is a businessman first and a hockey fan second, and I believe this paradigm shift is needed by the NAHL. In any case, I wish him luck.

Topeka Boos

Next on the agenda, we have a group in Topeka that's asked for my advice on getting a new junior hockey team. While the group is exploring the potential of going USHL or NAHL, they are keeping their options open and looking at Junior B as well. The group asked for my opinon of the WSHL, with which they've been in discussions. I explained that I could not recommend the WSHL to the group for a variety of reasons, and offered that the Minnesota or CSHL would be better choices.

I'll talk about travel in a moment, but the real reason to prefer the MnJHL or CSHL is that they are simply much better leagues, both on the ice and organizationally. Comparing the leagues from top to bottom, there can be little controversy in making such a statement.

In comparing travel in the WSHL and MnJHL, other than losing a potential rivalry with Tulsa and maybe Wichita (were they to also join the WSHL, as has been rumored), travel would either be a wash or perhaps even in favor of the MnJHL. You'd have games against St. Louis (5 hours), Rochester (7 hours), the core of teams in the Twin Cities (8 hours), and Spooner is your worst at 9.5 hours. In comparison, Dallas is 7.5, and San Antonio (11.5), Lafayette (13), and El Paso (15.5) are all a heck of a lot further, and that's not to mention the West Division.

Looking at the western CSHL teams, Chicago is the worst at 9 hours, and Dubuque, Peoria, Quad Cities, and St. Louis are all well within 8 hours. Throw in Kansas City and/or Srpingfield (MO), and you've got a fairly compact CSHL Western Division. Going further east, Cleveland would be the longest trip at 13.5 hours.

Anyway, the Topeka folks are serious and exploring their options. It'll be interesting to see which way they might go.

In other news...

Former Texarkana Bandit Kerry Bence has landed in Alpena, completing the Icediggers' roster...

In case anyone wasn't paying attention, here's a story about the growing issues between Russia and North America...

For fight fans, in my experience nothing beats an exhibition game. The picture alone is worth checking out on this one...

New buildings being polished up for OHL action...

In Pentiction, a partisan voice insists Campese was snubbed...

Giants camp boosts local economy...

Former Sudbury Wolf Stefan Blaho dies in car accident...

US NTDP's Patrick Kane snubs college for London Knights...

London also has a habit of keeping the roster in the family...

Here's the MJHL trade wire...

What a novel concept, using your alumni as ambassadors for the league...

It doesn't happen often, so it's nice to see the Jr. Cyclones get some ink (electrons?) from the Cincy Enquirer (scroll down past Don "I'm not ready to retire yet" Nelson)...

The South Saskatchewan Hockey League has renamed itself the Prairie Junior Hockey League, complete with a shiny new website...

The Sudbury Wolves got a new website as well, though I'm not sure about this trend I'm seeing towards pages having four columns...

Is it just me, or is Garry Unger hockey's bad penny?

The only reason I'm mentioning this article is that it's a good example of someone who as a 15-year-old who played Junior B before going on to not only Tier II Juniro A, but Major Juniors. Remember parents, Junior B is cheaper than Midgets.

Thrashers sign former US Nat/Gambler...

Here's a look at Brian Kilrea of the Ottawa 67's, just about the only thing that's been stable on the Ottawa sports scene...

Comments on "And the winner is..."

 

post a comment

Links to this post:

<\$BlogItemBacklinkCreate\$>