A few items in a light roundup this week
- The ECHL All-Star Game is next Wednesday, Jan. 21, in Orlando. Nick Bruneteau is the Fuel’s representative, as an alternate to the ECHL team.
- This is a bit interesting. Back when the Ice were in the IHL, their ECHL affiliate was the Columbus Chill. Now, those involved in the franchise have released a book telling about how they paved the way for the Blue Jackets.
- Almost as soon as we hit “send” last week, a LOT of Silly Season news started popping up.
- The Calgary Flames are purchasing the Stockton Thunder, adding another piece to the long-rumored AHL West move. Currently, the Flames own the AHL Adirondack Flames in Glens Falls, NY, and have an out clause in their lease.
- The Norfolk Admirals are being purchased by the Anaheim Ducks and likely headed to San Diego, currently an unoccupied market. According to the Virginian-Pilot, the likely replacement in Norfolk is an ECHL team, and the article also notes that Richmond, Va. officials are “reportedly mulling a return to the ECHL.”
- This Rochester story notes the AHL is looking at reducing its season from 76 games to either 72 or 66 contests. But it also has a good synopsis of the AHL West move (Edmonton moving its affiliate from OKC to Bakersfield confirmed, Los Angeles moving its affiliate from Manchester, NH to Ontario a “foregone conclusion,” Anaheim moving Norfolk to San Diego, the San Jose Sharks moving the Worcester Sharks to an unknown city in California and the Calgary to Stockton news, and states to watch the Arizona Coyotes-Portland, ME and Colorado Avalanche-Cleveland but could affect the Springfield Falcons).
- So, what does this mean for the ECHL? According to reports, Stockton, Bakersfield & Ontario – the league’s three California teams – are headed to the AHL, leaving Alaska (Anchorage), Idaho (Boise), Utah (Salt Lake) and Colorado (Fort Collins) as the league’s western teams. There are also dormant ECHL franchises in Reno and Las Vegas. Norfolk could be coming back into the ECHL to replace an AHL franchise, and the cities of Manchester, NH; Glens Falls, NY; Worcester, Mass.; and Oklahoma City would all, at the moment, become available markets).
- Former Ice goaltender Dalton Izyk had a shutout last week for Robert Morris against Bentley.
- The two coaches in the NHL All-Star game coming up on Jan. 25 in Columbus have Indy ties: former Checker (and current Predators coach) Peter Laviolette, and former IHL Ice coach (and current Kings coach) Darryl Sutter.