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Evansville Hockey

FHL's Future Unclear?

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5 hours ago, JMC-STL said:

While we weren't looking, the FHL has managed to establish & maintain a relatively balanced run of games in the first two months of this season (i.e., 19 to 21 games played for all seven teams).  Per usual, they've got one team running away with first place in the standings - this season it's Danville - as they approach the end of the calendar year.  But the other six teams are pretty tightly bunched & even the new entry from Cornwall, ON, is hanging in there.  I hate to jinx them (at least for the sake of their players - and in deference to HOCKEYDADX3), but the lack of public drama is almost refreshing at this point.  :huh:

Yeah not a lot of drama this year, one thing that has helped is most of these teams now play in rec style rinks, so they fit about 1500 fans or so. instead of the bigger venues the league originally wanted for their teams. Cornwall was a good addition due to the number of players in that area that could help the team in terms of strength being the newest team on the league. The FHL keeps rolling along, can't believe it, but it's true.

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5 hours ago, sniper said:

... one thing that has helped is most of these teams now play in rec style rinks, so they fit about 1500 fans or so. instead of the bigger venues the league originally wanted for their teams. Cornwall was a good addition due to the number of players in that area that could help the team in terms of strength being the newest team on the league. ...

Smaller buildings should bring smaller expenditures, for sure.  But for the top two teams who remain in the same arenas (Dashers & Prowlers), FHL attendance numbers are trending in the wrong direction.  They haven't reached the traditional New Year attendance boost yet, I know, but making up 150-200+ butts-in-seats average would be a major accomplishment for either one.  I was particularly concerned whether Cornwall could be a positive addition to this League when their team was finally announced, but maybe its hockey tradition can sustain it while the other teams right their ships.

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Has anyone noticed that the SPHL doesn't seem to be robbing players from the FHL like they did the previous couple of seasons?  Is there a story behind that?  We were almost using them like a lower league for call-ups for awhile.

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4 hours ago, MacGuy said:

Statistically speaking, just under a quarter of those who signed contracts since the season started came from the FHL.

Thats a surprising stat.

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Lagging attendance, players on multiple rosters during the first half of a season, players going to another league & not returning.  Is this where I'm supposed to declare another premature death of the F(P)HL?  Sounds kinda like the SPHL, too.  :hmm:

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Barry Soskin, owner of the FHL's Port Huron Prowlers (and the Danville Dashers AND the Carolina Thunderbirds), made a tangential reference to player advancement in his explanation for firing Prowlers head coach Trevor Karasiewicz:unsure:

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I know (Trevor's dismissal) hurts Port Huron but I'm in existence to move players up.

 

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From: The Federal Hockey League > News

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FHL Announces Neutral Site Game in Battle Creek, Michigan

12 days ago (15 February 2017)

Syracuse, NY - The Federal Hockey League (FHL) is pleased to announce a neutral site game on Sunday, March 12th, 2017 in Battle Creek, MI. The St. Clair Shores Fighting Saints will play home to the Berlin River Drivers at The Rink located at 75 Houston St in downtown Battle Creek. ...

"Battle Creek and Western Michigan has always been on the radar for the Federal Hockey League" stated FHL Commissioner Don Kirnan. "We hope with great support of this game we can explore placing a franchise there in the near future." ...

 

Read more at: http://www.federalhockey.com/news/fhl-announces-neutral-site-game-in-battle-creek-mi

And look - they're already warming up ...

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54 minutes ago, qwacker2 said:

I hear Anchorage has an empty rink. They've probably already been contacted.

Not quite empty.  The UAA Seawolves still play @ The Sullivan.

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Winston-Salem's Thunderbirds to be on two radio stations this season

By John Dell - Winston-Salem Journal

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The Carolina Thunderbirds, the latest Winston-Salem professional hockey team, are going all out in an effort to be heard throughout the state.

All 56 games for the 2017-18 season, the team’s first in the Federal Hockey League, are scheduled to air on radio. The team announced it has added WAME (92.9 FM and 550 AM) as part of the broadcasting network.

Local station WTOB (980 AM) will also broadcast every game live.

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Broadcasting the games will be Al Kessler, 25, who has several titles as the newest member of the Thunderbirds front office. Kessler, who is vice president of media relations and a corporate partnership account manager, has worked before in the Federal Hockey League.

Kessler also worked for the Macon Mayhem of the Southern Pro League in the 2015-16 season.

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“We have over 400 [season tickets] sold, and from what others are saying around the league, that has to be a record for a first-year team in the Federal Hockey League,” Brand said.

 

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2 hours ago, MacGuy said:

I still think WS wont last more than one season.......a lot of money going to the travel costs for them......I dont know if they can break even here.......

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2 hours ago, Marksmen119 said:

I still think WS wont last more than one season.......a lot of money going to the travel costs for them......I dont know if they can break even here.......

Barry Soskin has ownership stakes in W/S as well as several other FHL clubs these days.  He can save transportation costs by having each of his teams push a shared bus from arena to arena.  Helps the coaches out with regular team conditioning training, too.

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2 hours ago, JMC-STL said:

Barry Soskin has ownership stakes in W/S as well as several other FHL clubs these days.  He can save transportation costs by having each of his teams push a shared bus from arena to arena.  Helps the coaches out with regular team conditioning training, too.

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A shared bus? So, say WS has a game in Watertown and one of his other teams has a game in Cornwall......they still sharing one bus?

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This will not make it. Hockey NEVER makes it in Winston-Salem. Also downside, they will be competing with the Wake Forest Demon Deacons basketball team in the same complex. Another reason, where the Joel is located, a bad area of Winston. The area around the Parkway is gross and dangerous. :eyes:

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3 hours ago, Marksmen119 said:

A shared bus? So, say WS has a game in Watertown and one of his other teams has a game in Cornwall......they still sharing one bus?

If it would save him money - or especially if he could find a way to MAKE money - Barry would schedule all FHL games in one arena.  Then he could sell the bus, and use the gas money to stand up three more franchises to expand the SHL ("Soskin Hockey League").  I used to think Don Kirnan & his family were the worst things that could happen to the FHL; but lately, I'm thinkin' the worst is yet to come ... :unsure:

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1. A few seasons ago there were articles about players driving themselves to games. Sorry, I have no links to back this up, but if players are driving their own cars, it's no big deal when the repo man comes for the bus (and he will). 

2. The bus is probably the latest idea they're hoping to fund using the pay-to-play IDHL I can't see that league getting off the ground, but it's clear that it's noting but an ATM to keep the F(ly by night)HL and their new bus afloat. 

...my my I just sound skeptical this morning. 

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1 hour ago, TimO said:

... 2. The bus is probably the latest idea they're hoping to fund using the pay-to-play IDHL I can't see that league getting off the ground, but it's clear that it's noting but an ATM to keep the F(ly by night)HL and their new bus afloat. ...

I might've agreed completely with your bolded statement above, Tim, until the recent purchase of the FHL's Watertown Wolves by the  International Development Hockey League principals (headed by the aforementioned Don Kirnan).  Having now made an actual investment in a minor pro team that will presumably benefit from semi-successful IDHL operations, it seems a bit more likely that the new P2P junior league will actually make an appearance on ice.  The lingering questions in my mind are:

(1) Exactly what sort of a hockey business shell game have the IDHL ownership group cooked up this time? A clue is available from JuniorHockey.com's Stephen Heisler (a name from the past that may sound familiar to some forum members here and to long-time minor pro & junior hockey fans at large); and

(2) How long will it be before the IDHL collapses?  If you believe even a fraction of what The Junior Hockey News' "The Death Pool" blogger publishes, the scythe is already being sharpened.  reaper.gif

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10 hours ago, TimO said:

... The bus is probably the latest idea they're hoping to fund using the pay-to-play IDHL I can't see that league getting off the ground, but it's clear that it's noting but an ATM to keep the F(ly by night)HL and their new bus afloat.  ...

The FHL is gonna have a floating bus?  SWEET!  Now they can expand to Europe & still save airfare.

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Getting an owner is one thing. Getting 16-20 kids/team to pay upward so of $7,500 for the chance to get called up is another. Especially since getting called up and receiving $0.01 would make them ineligible for the NCAA and ACHA. I would think no one in their right mind would fall for this, but the Death Pool has been reporting on "Donkey Shows" like this for years, so you never know. I still think they shell game is that this whole tuition funded league is nothing more than a fund raiser for the FHL

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11 hours ago, TimO said:

... Getting the parents of 16-20 kids/team to pay upward so of $7,500 for the chance to get called up is another. ... I still think they shell game is that this whole tuition funded league is nothing more than a fund raiser for the FHL.

FIFY.  Sometimes I think the kids have more sense than their parents do.  I agree with you that Kirnan & Co. are in it as an alternate funding source for their primary venture, but they'll be lucky if that spigot runs for a whole season.  The F(P)HL oughta be called the ACSHL = "Annual Circus Sideshow Hockey League."

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On ‎7‎/‎4‎/‎2017 at 8:26 AM, TimO said:

... 2. The bus is probably the latest idea they're hoping to fund using the pay-to-play IDHL I can't see that league getting off the ground, but it's clear that it's noting but an ATM to keep the F(ly by night)HL and their new bus afloat. 

...my my I just sound skeptical this morning. 

The published start date for IDHL play recently slipped from October 2017 to October 2018.  Looks like that ATM done busted.

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30 minutes ago, JMC-STL said:

The published start date for IDHL play recently slipped from October 2017 to October 2018.  Looks like that ATM done busted.

The International Developmental Hockey League is a senior hockey league that will begin its inaugural season in October 2018 with teams in the Northeastern US and Canada.

The IDHL will serve as a feeder league to the FHL beginning in the 2018-2019 season. Players will be called up on a weekly basis to supplement the FHL rosters.

 

Shouldn't that be the other way around? Or its it senior in school?

Edited by Marksmen119

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