Monday, September 24, 2007

News and Notes

I'll lead off with what I find the best news. That is Omaha will rebroadcast all 30 home games on local Omaha stations.

B2 Networks To Sponsor USHL Player Of The Year Award.

The Blog That Yost Built features former Buccaneer, Aaron Palushaj.

An interesting story. (Thanks Marc for this link!)

Towards the end, it gets a little interesting. Let me know your thoughts =)


Anonymous said...

A successful USHL franchise in Rochester and maybe one in LaCrosse, WI some day, would really help connect Fargo to the rest of the Eastern Division. I believe that further expansion into Minnesota, Wisconsin and maybe back to St. Louis would be better for the league than growth to the east such as Louisville.

The building of natural rivals such as Lincoln vs. Omaha, Waterloo vs. Cedar Rapids, Sioux City vs. Sioux Falls not only enhanses the atmosphere at the games but also raises home attendance on both sides. A fan in Des Moines can go less than 2 hours and see Waterloo, Omaha, Cedar Rapids or Sioux City. Natural rivals between the teams and their cities is what is great for the league.

The USHL should learn a lesson from the mistakes of the NAHL past. More geography does not make the league stonger or more universal, rather it seperates the teams and cities from itself.

Anonymous said...

Sounds to me like the leagues should combine....both leagues have teams that struggle due to lack of attendance. And trust me BOTH leagues have made mistakes! Please...Fargo is big enough for a NAHL and a USHL team!?

utgotye said...

A few teams in the Western division should have a "Corridor Cup" of their own. Once Fargo enters the league, there will be 4 teams in cities along I29. I remember the Northern League (baseball for those who do not already know) had (perhaps still has) something similar with I29 teams. It was great for the fans and the players said they worked even harder to beat their "rivals" for the in season cup/award/trophy, unofficial though it was.

skeptic said...

yeah good idea, like some kid is gonna care about a gay corridor cup, hahahahahah.

Anonymous said...

the leagues should not combine; there is a place for both.

I liked having Rochester in the league. That said, the rec center may be too small financially to support a USHL team. A max crowd of 2000 just won't cut it.

We can give up on laCrosse - at least at the LaX Center. The city just won't play ball. Someone will have to build a rink there to do it.

Wausau may be an option and talked are under way. Beyond that, there's not much in MN/WI, unfortunately.

Maybe if the UHL/IHL goes under, the USHL can get Bloomington. That could be nice.

-gbpuck fan

Anonymous said...

GB - Minimum building requirement is now 3000. Chicago was grandfathered in (they can fit 2600 before the fire marshals get angry) but any new team has to have a 3000 seated capacity at a minimum.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the poster who made the comment about what could potentially happen if the International Hockey League (formerly known as the UHL, and then previously as the Colonial Hockey League). There are some markets in the IHL that certainly appear as if they could more than support a USHL team. That said, I do not hope for the demise of the IHL.

I sometimes wonder what sort of future the NAHL has. With how spread out the league is and the presence of some of the now assigned Tier III Junior A hockey leagues, I can't help but wonder if it might not make more sense for teams such as Southern Minnesota, North Iowa, and Alexandria to join the Minnesota Junior Hockey League; or the Alaska teams to join the Pacific Junior Hockey League (formerly NorPac); or for the Michigan teams to join the Central States Hockey League, etc.

This would obviously leave a gaping hole in the Tier II ranks in the United States, but if it means these NAHL clubs surviving and thriving, it's worth it. I mean, just think of the travel involved for various NAHL teams to go to the Showcase in Blaine or to send prospects to the prospects game this year.

When I look at the attendance figures for the NAHL, I don't know how most of the clubs make ends meet. It becomes a lot easier if the team is abiding under the Tier III rules.

The Minnesota Ice Hawks would probably lose money by going Tier II, but they can do quite well formerly as a Junior B team and now as a Tier III Junior A. Lastly, I agree that Rochester does not have a USHL caliber building, at least not compared to the new arenas in the league.

I personally do not think that Tier II can work so spread out. You can have your regions, but then you're playing the same team over and over (like what happens professionally in the IHL, the SPHL, and what will happen this year in the MAHL). Dropping down to Tier III isn't that bad. After all, the Atlantic Junior Hockey League and the Eastern Junior Hockey League (only recently coined Tier III) are both doing a good job feeding players to higher levels, be it Tier I Junior A, college, or even major juniors in some cases.

If he's really interested in bringing USHL hockey to Rochester, find a way to help make going Tier I profitable for the Ice Hawks and work with the existing structures and relationships they have (after repairing the previous damage by the Mustangs).

Anonymous said...

To be honest, I don't think there is an attendance or building requirement any more.Bbut I could be wrong.

I thought the teams could/do post a surety bond to ensure existence through the season instead of forcing an attendance minimum.

Chicago, BTW, meets on paper because the owner's company buys the tickets, unlike, say, attendance figures in Ohio.


Anonymous said...

GB you're right about that. One of my jobs in Chicago was making up the attendance each night (that's right, just picking the number to type into pointstreak). Some nights it was actual + 1000 (the amount ownership/the village eats), actual + 1500, or just a completely made up number.

I was referring to the empty size of the building. It's a Tier I/league requirement to have at least 3000 seats in any places that a team could move to/expand into.

The attendance requirement is still 2000 (as of last season) but if teams don't make it, there really are no consequences as we've seen in Ohio and Chicago.