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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Thursday News

The CHL gave their presentation to Rapid City officials yesterday. There's not a lot of details in the Rapid City Journal article, at least for my taste. Lack of close rivals was brought up - interestingly, presenter Ralph Backstrom represents the closest potential rival, in Fort Collins. The CHL also cited about 70 AHL callups and a handful of NHL players from the CHL. I don't know the actual AHL number, but the NHL number is ten, eight of which weren't in the league as a part of the lockout, and only three of which spent ten or more games in the CHL. In comparison, the USHL is probably close to generating ten NHLers per exiting cohort, be it directly or after passing through the NCAA. The CHL also mentioned that eight teams had AHL and/or NHL affiliations. History has proven that these agreements aren't usually worth the paper they're written on - if they're even on paper. Quite often AA minor league affiliations are nothing more than formalized networking agreements between two coaches who happen to know each other, and are nothing like how affiliations worth in baseball, where organizations have another 80-120 players under contract for development.

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Comments on "Thursday News"

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:07 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

Why Blast the CHL. The minor pro league is still better to watch than the over hyped Ushl.

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:01 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

I agree with the last post! I have covered a lot of hockey the past 5 years and I must say the CHL is a better league to watch. Not saying that the USHL is not fun to watch, however Pro-Hockey (Minor or the NHL) is faster and there are fewer mistakes made. Any city should be lucky to get a CHL team, especially since it is well on its way to being the best AA Minor Hockey (Yes, even over the ECHL).

And don't give me that "ECHL has sent more to the NHL than the CHL." Because that is true, however what league is expanding at a steady pace? Not the ECHL... The ECHL is slowly folding some teams and relocating others!

The CHL continues to show a strong economical setup and will eventually be more prominent for NHL affliates.

Just wait and see!!!

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:17 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

wait and see what? Will you say the same to the three teams that approached the NAHL? So you know, three CHL cities are strongly wieghing the option of moving out of the CHL and into the NAHL South Div. The CHL should be better brand, players are more mature and teams carry ex NHL'ers. Problem is what league is more secure!

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:38 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

The only reason they opt out of the CHL is because of having to pay players. But, like the second post said --- "The CHL continues to show a strong economical setup and will eventually be more prominent for NHL affliates." --- I agree with you!

 

Blogger Marc Foster said ... (9:46 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

Hey folks I'll never take anything away from the business side of the (WP)CHL office, as they've clearly demonstrated they have a good model. Rapid City clearly has a tough decision to make. The problem I have is on the ice side. The whole low minors vs. juniors debate often entails a lot of emotion and qualitative factors... things like speed, errors, and "level of entertainment" that can't be quantified. I deal with what can be quantified, because in business "what is important gets measured"... I'm not saying these qualitative factors aren't important, but the certainly aren't, or can't, be measured...

 

Blogger Marc Foster said ... (10:00 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

The other cost center difference between the USHL and CHL is the lack of Worker's Comp insurance in juniors. Not as much as the player payroll, but still a cost that is not insignificant...

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:35 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

Marc, great points! However I am the second post and must say that I believe in more premier junior leagues throughout the States. But, I also believe that there are a lot of opportunities created by the CHL, ECHL, UHL (if they’ll be around next year?), and the SPHL (Give them some time and a commissioner). The fact is, not every player in the top Junior Leagues (Major Junior, BCHL, USHL, and Alberta (AJHL)) are moving on to play in the NHL or even the AHL.

Providing more pro teams allow for kids to continue their dreams! I would want any chance for the kids I have mentored in hockey an opportunity to prove themselves at the next level, even if it is minor-pro (It beats beer league!)

Like you said Marc the CHL has great business model and the league is a lot of fun to watch! So is the ECHL and the UHL. I have been to ECHL games a bit more, however the CHL has more of a future potential (Hard to explain, other then saying I like what they are doing to improve the overall fan experience). The fact remains; when it comes to highest average of attendance the CHL is second to none! I have been to important ECHL games where there are only 650-1,000 people… The CHL have games that are not marquee and there are 8,000 in attendance.

 

Blogger Marc Foster said ... (11:33 AM, April 12, 2007) : 

I can't deny your first point. In fact, I'll expand it and suggest there is an obligation for hockey (pro leagues, junior leagues, and USA Hockey) to promote the expansion of the game at the NCAA D1 level. Hockey needs to build their game at all levels... and college is perhaps the most difficult because of Title IX.

As far as ECHL attendance goes, the same could be said of teams in most leagues. It's usually a market/ownership issue (Cincy, Beaumont, etc...), not a league one.

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (5:19 PM, April 12, 2007) : 

What 3 teams approached the NAHL (odessa,lubbock, amarillo) just quessing.

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:05 AM, April 13, 2007) : 

This Just In.... The Pioneers will be relocating to play in the CHL!!! Oh, wait they would violate some rule and be kicked out and then sue there way back in!!! (Just joking the Pioneers can't even be a top Junior team without cheating)

 

Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:29 PM, April 13, 2007) : 

Hey HOCKEY MORON above.. what are you bringing Pioneers into this for? Stick to the freaking topic you hoser! Find another blog for your saga.

 

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