Seventh in an eight-part series covering the All-Time Teams for each Indianapolis-based franchise that has played at least three full seasons. Previous all-time teams: Capitals, Chiefs, Racers, CHL Checkers, IHL Checkers, IHL Ice
Our series of All-Time Teams continues with a look at the Central Hockey League’s Indianapolis Ice. They played in the CHL from 1999-2004, a five-season span that saw the team post three winning seasons, win a championship in 2000, and win a division title in 2003.
LW: Yvan Corbin (1999-2001)
Corbin put together two of the most incredible seasons a player could have. In 1999-2000, he had 62 goals and 127 points in 66 games, tying linemate Chris MacKenzie for the CHL scoring title and league MVP award. That spring, had 15 points in 15 games to help lead the Ice to the Miron Cup championship. The next year, he was even more impressive offensively, scoring 75 goals and tallying 129 points in 69 games, and again was the league’s leading scorer. He had 50 goals in 39 games, one of the fastest runs to 50 in pro hockey history. His 137 goals are the sixth-most in Indy hockey history, and he did so in the smallest amount of games. He owns the two highest goal-scoring seasons in Indy hockey history, as well. He has 137 goals and 119 assists for 256 points in 135 games. He also has eight goals and nine assists in 17 playoff games.
C: Chris MacKenzie (1999-2002)
“Mac” was a veteran who teamed with Corbin to form one of the highest-scoring lines in Indy hockey history. He had 88 goals and 209 assists in 160 games from 1999-2002. He also had eight goals and 19 assists in 18 playoff games, including a team-high 21 points in the 2000 Miron Cup championship run. MacKenzie tied for the CHL’s leading scorer with 127 points in 1999-2000, and was also named the league MVP. He had 30 goals and 93 assists the following year. He has the first (93) and third (80)-highest assist seasons in Indy hockey history, and ranks eighth all time in Indy hockey players with 297 points and third with 209 assists.
RW: Jason Baird (2002-04)
Baird was a top offensive player in the team’s final two years under coach Ken McRae, putting together back-to-back 25+-goal seasons. He had 26-44-70 in 2002-03, and 27-52-79 the following year. He also ahd seven goals and eight assists in 15 playoff games over those two seasons, and helped lead the Ice to a division title. Baird, unfortunately, left us too young, as he survived severe injuries from a lawn mower explosion in 2008, but later passed away due to complications from cancer.
D: Bernie John (1999-2004)
No player personified the CHL-era Ice like Bernie John. He became the team’s captain, on-ice leader, and was a steady presence on the blueline throughout their entire five-year run. He was one of the great playmakers from the blueline in the city’s history. He ranks ninth among Indy hockey players in games played (301), first in assists (262) and fourth in points (353). He had two 20-goal seasons – 21-52-73 in 1999-2000, and 23-62-85 the following year. He had 52 and 59 assists in his final two seasons with the Ice. He played 31 playoff games with the team, with nine goals and 22 assists. He was a key part of the 2000 Miron Cup title run, with nine points in 15 games. John later has served as an assistant coach with the Indiana Ice and Indy Fuel, winning a Clark Cup in 2014.
D: Ryan Aikia (2001-04)
Aikia played against the Ice in the 2000 Miron Cup Final, but later became a fixture on the team’s blueline. He had eight goals and 49 assists in 180 games, and was +9 in those three seasons. He helped lead the Ice to a division title in 2003.
G: Jamie Morris (1999-2003)
Morris was an outstanding goaltender throughout the Ice’s run, but his best work came in the 2000 playoffs. He came on in relief midway through the opening-round series against Tulsa, blanked the Oilers in a 7-0 Game 5 win, then backstopped a three-game sweep of favored Oklahoma City in the conference final. He eventually was named the playoff MVP as the Ice beat Columbus in seven games to win the Miron Cup, punctuated with Morris’ 2-0 shutout in Game 7. Morris was 52-51-13 in 128 regular season games. He had five shutouts – three in 2001-02 – and a 3.42 career regular season GAA. Morris also played in 18 playoff games. He has remained in Indy, and was the Indiana Ice’s goaltending coach for several seasons.
Coach: Rod Davidson (1999-2002)
Davidson turned an expansion team into a championship team in 2000, coaching the Ice to a 39-28-3 record after the team was in last place on New Year’s Day. He went 90-101-17 over three seasons, but his run in the 2000 playoffs and winning a championship makes him a top choice.
LW: Jared Dumba (2002-04)
Dumba helped lead the Ice’s offense in their final two seasons, with two 25+-goal seasons – one in just 47 games. He had 27-20-47 in 47 games in 2002-03, and followed with 26-40-66, giving him 53 goals and 60 assists in 107 games with the Ice. He also had 10 goals and six assists in 13 playoff games.
C: Kevin St. Jacques (2002-03)
A former IHL Indianapolis Ice player, St. Jacques returned to Indy near the end of his career and put up a big number, with 22 goals and 56 assists in 64 games in 2002-03, leading the Ice to a division title. He also had six goals and four assists in eight playoff games that year.
RW: Jason Selleke (2000-02, 2003-04)
Selleke played three years with the Ice, punctuated with a year in the UHL with Fort Wayne. His best year came in 2001-02, when he had 22 goals and 26 assists. In total, he had 48 goals and 69 assists in 195 games. He was 2-2-4 in eight playoff games.
D: Dan Cousineau (1999-2002)
Part of the Buckeye Gang – the number of Ohio State grads who played for the Ice – Cousineau played three years for the team. He was outstanding in the 1999-2000 Miron Cup year, going 3-17-20 and +17 in 68 games. He also had six points in 15 playoff games that year. He played 192 games with the Ice, with 10 goals and 57 assists.
D: Mario Doyon (2003-04)
Another former IHL Ice player who returned to play for the CHL team, Doyon gave the Ice a big boost on the blueline in 2003-04. He had 23 goals and 31 assists in 63 games, as well as two assists in five playoff games that season. He has remained in Indy and coached hockey.
D: Mike Berger (1999-2000)
The captain of the Miron Cup championship team in 1999-2000, Berger was the first player signed by the CHL Ice, and intended to be the cornerstone of the team. Known as “The Bullet” because of his blistering 100+mph slapshot, he had 10 goals and 26 assists in 67 games. His number 44 was later retired by the team. He has remained in Indy and coached hockey at the high school and youth levels. Berger is another player who came back to Indy at the end of his career – he made his pro debut with the Checkers in 1987.
G: Shawn Silver (2002-03)
Silver had an outstanding year with the Ice in 2002-03, helping lead them to a division title. He was 29-12-4 with a 2.21 GAA. He had six shutouts, a record for Indianapolis hockey goaltenders that would be tied by Jeff Sanger the following year. His 2.21 GAA is the lowest career goals against average for an Indianapolis goaltender who has played at least 25 games.
Coach: Ken McRae (2002-04)
McRae’s first head coaching job was with the Ice, and he was immediately successful. The team was 76-39-13 during his tenure, winning a division title in 2002-03. McRae’s teams played a strong defensive style that saw much success on the ice. He was the CHL’s Coach of the Year in 2003.
Honorable mention: Chris George, Peter Bournazakis, Peter Jas, Jan Jas, Blaz Emersic, Kevin Popp, Ray Aho, Jeff Sanger, Brent Zelenewich.