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ECHL Opens 19th Season On Friday

October 16, 2006 - ECHL (ECHL) News Release

The Premier 'AA' Hockey League will drop the puck for its 19th season this weekend with 12 games on Friday, 10 games on Saturday and five games on Sunday.

The ECHL welcomes back the Cincinnati Cyclones and the Texas Wildcatters and will play 900 games from Oct. 20-Apr. 7 with 25 teams in 15 states and British Columbia, Canada.

The ECHL has raised its average attendance each of the last three seasons and averaged 4,372 per game a year ago which was the largest per-game average since 1999-2000. Nine teams averaged more than 5,000 per game for the first time since 1999-2000 and 13 of the 22 returning teams raised their attendance.

Hockey makes its return to Cincinnati for the first time since Mar. 26, 2004 when the Cyclones host the Pensacola Ice Pilots on Friday. Cincinnati requested and was granted a voluntary suspension for the past two seasons after reaching the Kelly Cup Playoffs in two of its three seasons from 2001-04, including losing in Game 7 of the conference finals to eventual champion Atlantic City in 2003. Cincinnati hosts its other in-state rival on Saturday when Toledo will visit U.S. Bank Arena.

Texas will play its first three games on the road before hosting Pensacola on Oct. 28. The Wildcatters were unable to play last year when Ford Arena was used by emergency personnel in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Sullivan Arena is expecting a standing-room-only crowd on Friday when Alaska raises its Kelly Cup and Brabham Cup banners prior to its game against the Victoria Salmon Kings. The Aces are only the second team in 18 years to win both the regular season point title and the postseason championship, and became the first team ever to defeat three teams that had 100 points during the regular season. Since joining the league as an expansion team in 2003-04, Alaska has sold out 16 games in the regular season and 18 of 22 games in the Kelly Cup Playoffs, including nine in a row last year to break its league record of seven consecutive postseason sellouts set in 2005.

Fresno raises its Pacific Division champion banner at Save Mart Center on Friday when it hosts the Las Vegas Wranglers. After finishing first in the division with a team record 43 wins and 100 points, the Falcons advanced to the Kelly Cup Playoffs for the first time and came within one goal of reaching the Kelly Cup Finals, losing 3-2 in double overtime in Game 7 to eventual Kelly Cup champion Alaska in the National Conference Finals.

Gwinnett fans will watch the team raise its South Division and American Conference championship banners at Your Best Rate Financial Home Ice at The Arena at Gwinnett Center when the Gladiators host South Carolina on Friday.

Toledo will be looking for its fourth consecutive season-opening sellout crowd and the Storm will hoist the North Division championship banner to the rafters of the historic Toledo Sports Arena when in-state rival Dayton visits on Friday.

After reaching the playoffs for the first time in five seasons last year, Augusta has new ownership as it begins its quest to return to the Kelly Cup Playoffs when it hosts Columbia on Friday at James Brown Arena.

Having won its first-ever playoff series a year ago, Bakersfield will begin its quest for a third straight trip to the Kelly Cup Playoffs on Friday when it hosts the Stockton Thunder. The Condors raised their attendance for the third consecutive year and reached 200,000 for the first time since joining as an expansion team in 2003-04.

Charlotte begins its second season at downtown Charlotte Bobcats Arena with new local ownership as it hosts the Wheeling Nailers on Friday. The Checkers increased their average attendance more than 15.5 percent and led the league with 10 sellouts, including two crowds over 10,000 and four crowds in excess of 9,000, while reaching the postseason for the second season in a row for the first time since 2001 and 2002.

Taking the first step in its goal to regain the attendance crown, Florida will host Texas on Friday and Saturday at Germain Arena. The Everblades led the ECHL in attendance from 2000-05 and have not drawn less than 220,000 or averaged less than 6,200 per game in each of their first seven years in the league.

New ownership and new coach Rick Adduono have created excitement in Long Beach which hosts the Idaho Steelheads on Friday. The Ice Dogs advanced to the postseason each of the past two years and look to advance deeper into the playoffs with Adduono, who won Kelly Cup titles with South Carolina in 1997 and 2001.

A new affiliation with the neighboring Phoenix Coyotes of the National Hockey has the Phoenix RoadRunners eagerly anticipating their second season which begins with a three-game series against the Utah Grizzlies Friday to Sunday at US Airways Center.

Under new ownership and with a new head coach, Trenton renews its rivalry with the Reading Royals on Friday at the Sovereign Bank Arena. On Saturday the battle moves to the Sovereign Center where the Royals set a team record with 7,315 for their game against the Titans on Mar. 4, one of three sellouts for Reading which surpassed 200,000 fans for the third time in five seasons.

One of the original five teams when the ECHL began in 1988-89, Johnstown opens its 19th season on Saturday. Pensacola visits Cambria County War Memorial which was built in 1950 and immortalized in the movie "Slapshot". Reaching the postseason for the second time in the last three years, the Chiefs raised their attendance more than 1.5 percent a year ago.

South Carolina begins its 14th season at the North Charleston Coliseum when it hosts Palmetto state rival Columbia. The Stingrays have reached the postseason 13 seasons in a row, setting the league record for appearances and consecutive appearances, and won the Kelly Cup in 1997 and 2001.

In other action on Saturday, Victoria visits Alaska and Gwinnett travels to Augusta while Bakersfield hosts Idaho and Charlotte hosts Wheeling.

Opening weekend concludes on Sunday with Pensacola continuing its trek towards Florida with a visit to Reading while Las Vegas visits Fresno, Bakersfield travels to Long Beach and Trenton hosts Johnstown.

League Coaches Are Mixture Of New, Old

Nineteen of the 25 coaches behind ECHL benches return to their same team from 2005-06 while six begin careers with new teams, including three first-year head coaches.

After spending 2005-06 as an assistant coach with Norfolk of the American Hockey League, former Trenton player Rick Kowalsky returns as head coach just two years after leading the Titans to the Kelly Cup championship. Troy Mann was promoted from assistant coach to head coach in Columbia while Chuck Weber moves from being an assistant coach in Utah to being head coach in Cincinnati which returns to the ice for the first time since 2003-04.

Malcolm Cameron is in his first season with the Texas Wildcatters after spending the last two years with Long Beach where he was 79-47-18 and led the Ice Dogs to back-to-back Kelly Cup Playoff appearances. Long Beach is now led by Rick Adduono, who spent part of last season as head coach of Pensacola and who was a part of two Kelly Cup championships with South Carolina. George Dupont is in his first full season in Pensacola, having taken over the team on Jan. 6 and going 10-28-4. Tony MacAulay is in his first season in Victoria after taking over as head coach in Trenton on Dec. 5, 2005 and leading the Titans back to the Kelly Cup Playoffs.

Bob Ferguson returns for his second season with Augusta, which returned to the Kelly Cup Playoffs for the first time since 2001 after going 30-36-6, while Frank Anzalone is in his second season with Johnstown, which advanced past the first round in the postseason for the first time since 2002. Anzalone (299-209-57) needs one victory to become only the third ECHL coach to reach 300 wins and is third in ECHL career wins behind John Brophy (480) and John Marks (466).

Derek Laxdal returns for his second season after leading Idaho to a 43-21-8 record and its third straight appearance in the Kelly Cup Playoffs while Ron Filion returns in Phoenix looking to lead the RoadRunners to a berth in the postseason in their second season. Chris Cichocki returns in Stockton where the Thunder hopes to have the same success on the ice as they did off the ice in their inaugural season, leading the league in attendance including four capacity crowds at 10,117-seat Stockton Arena.

In Matt Thomas' first season in Fresno, the Falcons reached 100 points for the first time in history (43-15-14), captured a division title and came within one goal of reaching the Kelly Cup Finals, losing 3-2 in double overtime in Game 7 to eventual Kelly Cup champion Alaska in the National Conference Finals. Jason Christie led Utah to a 36-30-6 record and a berth in the postseason in the Grizzlies first season in the ECHL, marking the fifth time in six ECHL seasons that his team has advanced to the Kelly Cup Playoffs.

A pair of coaches in the North Division begin their sophomore year behind the bench as Karl Taylor returns in Reading and Glen Patrick is back in Wheeling. Taylor was chosen to coach the American Conference in the ECHL All-Star Game, becoming the sixth first-year coach since 1996 to step behind the bench for the midseason event. He led the Royals to a 42-23-7 record and a third straight trip to the playoffs while Reading continued to rank among the league leaders in players called up to the American Hockey League. Patrick and the Nailers eliminated Reading from the postseason, the first playoff win for Wheeling since 1998, after finishing 45-21-6 in the regular season.

In his third season in Dayton and his eighth season as an ECHL head coach, Don MacAdam has a 166-156-41 record. Nick Vitucci led Toledo to the American Conference Finals a year ago, the farthest postseason advancement since 1996, and has led the Storm to the Kelly Cup Playoffs each of the last two years which is the first back-to-back postseason appearances since 1998 and 1999. Vitucci was ECHL Coach of the Year in 2004-05 and has won more ECHL titles than any other individual, capturing four as a player (1989, 1990, 1994 and 1996) and one as an assistant coach (2002).

Glen Gulutzan returns for his fourth season in Las Vegas where he was named ECHL Coach of the Year in 2005-06 after the Wranglers finished second overall with 112 points and a 53-13-6 record, tying the league record for second-most wins and finishing with the third-highest point total in the 18-year history of the ECHL.

Returning for his fourth year in Alaska is Davis Payne whose team in 2005-06 became only the second team in ECHL history to win both the Brabham

Cup, awarded to the regular season point champion, and the Kelly Cup, awarded to the postseason champion. The Aces finished the regular season with 113 points which is the highest point total to win the league postseason title and the second-highest total ever.

Jeff Pyle returns in Gwinnett which he led to its best finish ever with 108 points, a 50-15-7 record and a trip to the Kelly Cup Finals. Pyle has been selected to coach in the ECHL All-Star Game each of the past three years as the Gladiators have reached the postseason each of their first three seasons in Georgia. The longest tenured coach in the league is Gerry Fleming, who is one win shy of 200 wins in five seasons with the Everblades (199-115-46) and has a career ECHL record of 237-142-53. Fleming has led Florida to the Kelly Cup Playoffs in each of his five years behind the bench of the Everblades, including back-to-back Finals appearances in 2004 and 2005.

Returning for his third full season is Bakersfield's Marty Raymond, whose Condors were 40-26-6 in 2005-06 while setting 38 team records and reaching the Kelly Cup Playoffs for the second year in a row. Bakersfield beat Long Beach in seven games for its first-ever postseason series win before being eliminated in seven games by Fresno in the Pacific Division Finals. Derek Wilkinson, who is the second youngest active head coach at 32 years old, has led Charlotte to the postseason in each of his first two seasons, the first back-to-back appearances since 2001 and 2002. The Checkers advanced to the American Conference Finals in 2005, marking the longest postseason run in nine years.

After leading South Carolina to its league record 13th straight postseason appearance in 2005-06, Jason Fitzsimmons returns for his fifth season as head coach and his ninth season with the organization where he won a Kelly Cup as a player in 1997 and as an assistant coach in 2001.

New Rules

Upon the recommendation of the Rules Committee, the Board approved the adoption of the following new rules for 2006-07:

* Any player (excluding goaltender) who shoots the puck over the glass in his defending zone will not be penalized for delay of game, but the team of the player will not be permitted a line change on the ensuing faceoff in the defensive zone.

* The maximum curvature of a player's stick was increased to three-quarters of an inch. Previously, the maximum curvature had been one-half inch. This change is reflective of and in line with the new change adopted by the National Hockey League and the American Hockey League.

* The Board also approved a rule change that will give the home team the choice of shooting first or second in the shootout.


ECHL Adopts A New Standard For Officiating

In its continuing role as the primary development league for the National Hockey League and the American Hockey League, the ECHL and its officials will adopt the standard of rules enforcement for 2006-07.

ECHL Vice President of Hockey Operations Rod Pasma traveled to the NHL office in Toronto to develop a video presentation used to prepare ECHL players, coaches and officials for a new standard of officiating under the one-man referee system. The new enforcement procedures were explained to league coaches at their annual meeting, to league Governors at their preseason meeting, and to on-ice officials at preseason training camps. The video is also available for fans to watch at the league's official web site at www.ECHL.com/Rule_Book.shtml.

"We followed the NHL very closely last season and have seen the positive effect that the new standard has had on their game," said Pasma. "We are grateful to the NHL hockey operations and officiating departments for their assistance in developing a similar standard of rules enforcement geared toward the one-referee system.

"This change will help ease the transition for players and officials as they move up to the AHL and the NHL, but even more important is the faster and more enjoyable game for our fans," he added.

"The NHL is pleased that the ECHL has adopted the new standard of rule enforcement. It is an exciting change and one which will improve the game all around," said Walkom. "We look forward to working with the ECHL's hockey operations department, officiating department and on-ice staff to make the transition to the new standard as easy as possible for the ECHL."

Fast Facts About The Premier 'AA' Hockey League

* Began in 1988-89 with five teams in three states, the coast-to-coast ECHL welcomes back the Texas Wildcatters and the Cincinnati Cyclones in 2006-07 giving it 25 teams in 16 states and British Columbia.

* ECHL has affiliations with 24 of the 30 teams in the National Hockey League and 133 players who were under contract to teams in the NHL played in the ECHL last season.

* Two head coaches (Peter Laviolette and Jim Playfair) and nine assistant coaches in the NHL have ECHL experience.

* 303 players have gone on to play in the NHL after playing in the ECHL, including a record 47 in 2005-06 and 158 in the last five seasons.

* ECHL was represented for the sixth consecutive year on the Stanley Cup champion by Carolina head coach Peter Laviolette, who is the first ECHL coach to hoist the coveted trophy, Chad LaRose and Andrew Hutchinson.

* ECHL has affiliations with 23 of the 27 teams in the American Hockey League and for the past 17 years there has been an ECHL player on the Calder Cup Champion.

* For each of the past four seasons, the ECHL has had more players called up to the AHL than all other professional leagues combined with 1,646 call ups involving almost 1,000 players, including 2005-06 when there were 416 call ups involving 263 players.

* ECHL raised its average attendance for the third straight year in 2005-06 drawing 3,934,794 for 900 games which is an average of 4,372 per game, an increase of more than nine percent and the largest per-game average since 1999-2000. League welcomed 39 sellout crowds and 13 of the 22 returning teams raised their average attendance from a year ago.

* Idaho Steelheads and the City of Boise will host the 15th Annual ECHL All-Star Game presented by Rbk Hockey on Jan. 17 and the 10th Annual ECHL All-Star Skills Competition presented by Rbk Hockey on Jan. 16 at Qwest Arena.

* ECHL and its member teams contributed more than $2.3 million for charity and relief funds, including those benefiting victims of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, while also making thousands of appearances by players, coaches, team personnel and mascots at schools, hospitals, libraries and charity functions.

* Further information on the ECHL is available from its website at ECHL.com.

DID YOU KNOW? ...

The ECHL and the American Hockey League are the only two minor professional hockey leagues that are recognized in the recently approved Collective Bargaining Agreement between the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players' Association.

The CBA states that any player on an NHL entry-level contract designated for assignment to a minor league must report if assigned to a team in the ECHL or the AHL. A player on an NHL entry-level contract assigned to a minor professional league other than the ECHL or the AHL is not required to report and can request reassignment to a team in the ECHL or the AHL.

2006-07 ECHL Critical Dates

Oct. 18
Opening-Day Rosters Due at 3 p.m. ET

Oct. 20
19th ECHL Season Begins

Dec. 21-27
For all players on an ECHL roster as of 5 p.m. ET on Dec. 21, a roster freeze shall apply through 9 a.m. ET on Dec. 27, with respect to waivers, trades and any other player assignments.

Players may be called up or reassigned by AHL or NHL teams.

Jan. 16-18
All-Star Break

Jan. 16
Rbk Hockey
ECHL Skills Competition
Qwest Arena in Boise, Idaho

Jan. 17
Rbk Hockey
ECHL All-Star Game
Qwest Arena in Boise, Idaho

Jan. 19
Regular Season Resumes

Home teams begin wearing road jerseys from first half of season

Road teams begin wearing home jerseys from first half of season

Feb. 5
Overseas Deadline at 5 p.m. ET

Mar. 7
Recall/Assignment Deadline

Mar. 12
AHL Clear Day List

Mar. 14
Trade Deadline at 3 p.m. ET

Apr. 4
Amateur Playoff Eligibility Deadline at 5 p.m. ET

Apr. 9
Playoff Roster Deadline at 3 p.m. ET

Apr. 10
Kelly Cup Playoffs Begin


National Conference, West Division

Alaska Aces, Fourth Season

Location: Anchorage, Alaska
Arena (Opened): Sullivan Arena (1983)
Capacity: 6,251
Conference: National
Division: West
Coach: Davis Payne, Fourth Season (136-59-21)
NHL Affiliate: St. Louis Blues
AHL Affiliate: Peoria Rivermen

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Won Kelly Cup
Defeated Gwinnett in Kelly Cup Finals
(4 games to 1)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 53-12-7
Points:: 113
Division Finish: First
Conference Finish: First
Overall Finish: First
Goals-Per Game: 4.01 (2nd)
Goals-Against Average: 2.33 (1st)
Power Play: 20.6% (6th)
Penalty Kill: 87.7% (1st)

Idaho Steelheads, Fourth Season

Location: Boise, Idaho
Arena (Opened): Qwest Arena (1997)
Capacity: 5,006
Conference: National
Division: West
Coach: Derek Laxdal, Second Season (43-21-8)
NHL Affiliate: Dallas Stars
AHL Affiliate: Iowa Stars

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost West Division To Las Vegas
(3 games to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 43-21-8
Points:: 94
Division Finish: 3rd
Conference Finish: 4th
Overall Finish: 8th
Goals-Per Game: 3.72 (3rd)
Goals-Against Average: 3.07 (13th)
Power Play: 21.8% (2nd)
Penalty Kill: 82.3% (14th)

Phoenix RoadRunners, Second Season

Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Arena (Opened): US Airways Center (1992)
Capacity: 7,922
Conference: National
Division: West

Coach: Ron Filion, Second Season (20-47-5)
NHL Affiliate: Phoenix Coyotes
AHL Affiliate: San Antonio Rampage

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Did Not Qualify

2005-06 In Review
Record: 20-47-5
Points:: 45
Division Finish: 6th
Conference Finish: 11th
Overall Finish: 25th

Goals-Per Game: 2.17 (25th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.65 (22nd)
Power Play: 13.5% (24th)
Penalty Kill: 79.6% (20th)

Utah Grizzlies, Second Season

Location: West Valley City, Utah
Arena (Opened): The "E" Center (1997)
Capacity: 10,207
Conference: National
Division: West
Coach: Jason Christie, Second Season (36-30-6)
NHL Affiliate: Independent
AHL Affiliate: Independent

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost West Division Semifinals To Alaska
(0 games to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 36-30-6
Points:: 78
Division Finish: 4th
Conference Finish: 7th
Overall Finish: 14th
Goals-Per Game: 3.26 (10th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.28 (15th)
Power Play: 18.1% (11th)
Penalty Kill: 76.3% (24th)

Victoria Salmon Kings, Second Season

Location: Victoria, British Columbia
Arena (Opened): Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre (2005)
Capacity: 7,000
Conference: National
Division: West
Coach: Tony MacAulay, First Season
NHL Affiliate: Vancouver Canucks
AHL Affiliate: Manitoba Moose

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Did Not Qualify

2005-06 In Review
Record: 26-37-9
Points:: 61
Division Finish: 5th
Conference Finish: 9th
Overall Finish: 20th
Goals-Per Game: 2.83 (20th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.63 (21st)
Power Play: 18.0% (12th)
Penalty Kill: 78.4% (23rd)

American Conference, South Division

Augusta Lynx, Ninth Season

Location: Augusta, Ga.
Arena (Opened): James Brown Arena (1979)
Capacity: 6,604
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Bob Ferguson, Second Season (30-36-6)
NHL Affiliate: Anaheim Ducks
AHL Affiliate: Portland Pirates

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost South Division Quarterfinals To Greenville
(0 games to 2)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 30-36-6
Points:: 66
Division Finish: Sixth
Conference Finish: 11th
Overall Finish: 19th

Goals-Per Game: 3.00 (16th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.54 (19th)
Power Play: 14.9% (20th)
Penalty Kill: 81.5% (17th)

Charlotte Checkers, 14th Season

Location: Charlotte, North Carolina
Arena (Opened): Charlotte Bobcats Arena (2005)
Capacity: 6,800
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Derek Wilkinson, Fourth Season (84-74-16)
NHL Affiliate: New York Rangers
AHL Affiliate: Hartford Wolf Pack

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost South Division Semifinals To South Carolina
(1 game to 2)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 33-34-5
Points:: 71
Division Finish: 5th
Conference Finish: 9th
Overall Finish: 17th

Goals-Per Game: 3.22 (11th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.53 (18th)
Power Play: 17.8% (14th)
Penalty Kill: 83.1% (11th)

Columbia Inferno, Sixth Season

Location: Columbia, South Carolina
Arena (Opened): Carolina Coliseum (1968)
Capacity: 6,231
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Troy Mann, First Season
NHL Affiliate: Toronto Maple Leafs
AHL Affiliate: Toronto Marlies

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Did Not Qualify

2005-06 In Review
Record: 25-39-8
Points:: 58
Division Finish: 7th
Conference Finish: 12th
Overall Finish: 21st
Goals-Per Game: 2.90 (19th)
Goals-Against Average: 4.03 (24th)
Power Play: 14.4% (22nd)
Penalty Kill: 79.3% (21st)

Florida Everblades, Ninth Season

Location: Estero, Florida
Arena (Opened): Germain Arena (1998)
Capacity: 7,080
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Gerry Fleming, Sixth Season (199-115-46)
NHL Affiliate: Carolina Hurricanes/ Florida Panthers
AHL Affiliate: Albany River Rats

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost South Division Finals To Gwinnett
(1 game to 3)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 48-20-4
Points:: 100
Division Finish: 2nd
Conference Finish: 2nd
Overall Finish: T-4th
Goals-Per Game: 3.71 (4th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.89 (7th)
Power Play: 21.0% (4th)
Penalty Kill: 84.2% (6th)

Gwinnett Gladiators, Fourth Season

Location: Duluth, Georgia
Arena (Opened): Your Best Rate Financial Home Ice at The Arena at Gwinnett Center (2003)
Capacity: 11,355
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Jeff Pyle, Fourth Season (132-61-23)
NHL Affiliate: Atlanta Thrashers
AHL Affiliate: Chicago Wolves

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost Kelly Cup Finals To Alaska
(1 game to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 50-15-7
Points:: 107
Division Finish: 1st
Conference Finish: 1st
Overall Finish: 3rd
Goals-Per Game: 4.22 (1st)
Goals-Against Average: 2.89 (T-7th)
Power Play: 24.1% (1st)
Penalty Kill: 82.2% (15th)

Pensacola Ice Pilots, 11th Season

Location: Pensacola, Florida
Arena (Opened): Pensacola Civic Center (1985)
Capacity: 8,150
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: George Dupont, First Full Season (10-28-4)
NHL Affiliate: New York Islanders
AHL Affiliate: Bridgeport Sound Tigers

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Did Not Qualify

2005-06 In Review
Record: 21-44-7
Points:: 49
Division Finish: 8th
Conference Finish: 13th
Overall Finish: 23rd
Goals-Per Game: 2.69 (21st)
Goals-Against Average: 4.07 (25th)
Power Play: 12.9% (25th)
Penalty Kill: 78.8% (22nd)

South Carolina Stingrays, 14th Season

Location: North Charleston, South Carolina
Arena (Opened): North Charleston Coliseum (1993)
Capacity: 10,349
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Jason Fitzsimmons, Fifth Season (152-99-37)
NHL Affiliate: Washington Capitals
AHL Affiliate: Hershey Bears

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost South Division Semifinals To Gwinnett
(0 games to 3)

2005-06 In Review Record: 32-25-15
Points:: 79
Division Finish: 4th
Conference Finish: 7th
Overall Finish: 13th
Goals-Per Game: 3.19 (12th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.29 (16th)
Power Play: 19.9% (7th)
Penalty Kill: 82.7% (12th)

Texas Wildcatters, Third Season

Location: Beaumont, Texas
Arena (Opened): Ford Arena (2003)
Capacity: 7,752
Conference: American
Division: South
Coach: Malcolm Cameron, First Season
NHL Affiliate: Independent
AHL Affiliate: Houston Aeros

National Conference, Pacific Division

Bakersfield Condors, Fourth Season

Location: Bakersfield, California
Arena (Opened): Rabobank Arena (1998)
Capacity: 9,000
Conference: National
Division: Pacific
Coach: Marty Raymond, Fourth Season (86-57-18)
NHL Affiliate: Independent
AHL Affiliate: Independent

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost Pacific Division Finals To Fresno
(3 games to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 40-26-6
Points:: 86
Division Finish: 2nd
Conference Finish: 5th
Overall Finish: 11th

Goals-Per Game: 3.07 (15th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.08 (14th)
Power Play: 16.2% (18th)
Penalty Kill: 84.1% (7th)

Fresno Falcons, Fourth Season

Location: Fresno, California
Arena (Opened): Save Mart Center (2003)
Capacity: 13,800
Conference: National
Division: Pacific
Coach: Matt Thomas, Second Season (43-15-14)
NHL Affiliate: San Jose Sharks
AHL Affiliate: Worcester Sharks

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost National Conference Finals To Alaska
(3 games to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 43-15-14
Points:: 100
Division Finish: 1st
Conference Finish: 3rd
Overall Finish: T-4th
Goals-Per Game: 3.19 (12th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.85 (6th)
Power Play: 19.7% (8th)
Penalty Kill: 83.7% (9th)

Las Vegas Wranglers, Fourth Season

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Arena (Opened): Orleans Arena (2003)
Capacity: 7,773
Conference: National
Division: Pacific
Coach: Glen Gulutzan, Fourth Season (127-68-21)
NHL Affiliate: Calgary Flames
AHL Affiliate: Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost West Division Finals To Alaska
(2 games to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 53-13-6
Points:: 112
Division Finish: 2nd
Conference Finish: 2nd
Overall Finish: 2nd
Goals-Per Game: 3.71 (T-4th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.44 (2nd)
Power Play: 20.7% (5th)
Penalty Kill: 83.5% (10th)

Long Beach Ice Dogs, Fourth Season

Location: Long Beach, California
Arena (Opened): Long Beach Arena (1962)
Capacity: 10,400
Conference: National
Division: Pacific
Coach: Rick Adduono, First Season
NHL Affiliate: Independent
AHL Affiliate: Independent

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost Pacific Division Semifinals To Bakersfield
(3 games to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 36-27-9
Points:: 81
Division Finish: 3rd
Conference Finish: 6th
Overall Finish: 12th
Goals-Per Game: 2.92 (18th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.01 (12th)
Power Play: 14.2% (23rd)
Penalty Kill: 83.9% (8th)

Stockton Thunder, Second Season

Location: Stockton, California
Arena (Opened): Stockton Arena (2005)
Capacity: 10,000
Conference: National
Division: Pacific
Coach: Chris Cichocki, Second Season (18-40-14)
NHL Affiliate: Edmonton Oilers
AHL Affiliate: Independent

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Did Not Qualify

2005-06 In Review
Record: 18-40-14
Points:: 50
Division Finish: 5th
Conference Finish: 10th
Overall Finish: 22nd
Goals-Per Game: 2.67 (23rd)
Goals-Against Average: 3.61 (20th)
Power Play: 17.8% (13th)
Penalty Kill: 80.5% (18th)

American Conference, North Division

Cincinnati Cyclones, Fourth Season

Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Arena (Opened): U.S. Bank Arena (1975)
Capacity: 6,955
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Chuck Weber, First Season
NHL Affiliate: Montreal Canadiens
AHL Affiliate: Hamilton Bulldogs

Dayton Bombers, 16th Season

Location: Dayton, Ohio
Arena (Opened): Nutter Center (1990)
Capacity: 9,950
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Don MacAdam, Third Season (43-86-15)
NHL Affiliate: Columbus Blue Jackets
AHL Affiliate: Syracuse Crunch

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Did Not Qualify

2005-06 In Review
Record: 20-46-6
Points:: 46
Division Finish: 6th
Conference Finish: 14th
Overall Finish: 24th
Goals-Per Game: 2.68 (22nd)
Goals-Against Average: 3.82 (23rd)
Power Play: 16.8% (17th)
Penalty Kill: 76.1% (25th)

Johnstown Chiefs, 19th Season

Location: Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Arena (Opened): Cambria County War Memorial (1950)
Capacity: 3,880
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Frank Anzalone, Second Season (30-26-16)
NHL Affiliate: Tampa Bay Lightning
AHL Affiliate: Springfield Falcons

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost North Division Semifinals To Toledo
(0 games to 3)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 30-26-16
Points:: 76
Division Finish: 4th
Conference Finish: 8th
Overall Finish: 16th

Goals-Per Game: 3.10 (14th)
Goals-Against Average: 3.38 (17th)
Power Play: 18.3% (9th)
Penalty Kill: 79.9% (19th)

Reading Royals, Sixth Season

Location: Reading, Pennsylvania
Arena (Opened): Sovereign Center (2001)
Capacity: 7,214
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Karl Taylor, Second Season (42-23-7)
NHL Affiliate: Los Angeles Kings
AHL Affiliate: Manchester Monarchs

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost North Division Semifinals To Wheeling
(1 game to 3)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 42-23-7
Points:: 91
Division Finish: 3rd
Conference Finish: 6th
Overall Finish: 10th
Goals-Per Game: 3.46 (6th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.90 (9th)
Power Play: 21.2% (3rd)
Penalty Kill: 85.4% (3rd)

Toledo Storm, 16th Season

Location: Toledo, Ohio
Arena (Opened): Toledo Sports Arena (1947)
Capacity: 5,361
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Nick Vitucci, Fourth Season (101-74-18)
NHL Affiliate: Detroit Red Wings/ Chicago Blackhawks
AHL Affiliate: Grand Rapids Griffins/ Norfolk Admirals

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost American Conference Finals To Gwinnett
(1 game to 4)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 46-21-5
Points:: 97
Division Finish: 1st
Conference Finish: 3rd
Overall Finish: 6th
Goals-Per Game: 3.39 (9th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.63 (4th)
Power Play: 18.2% (10th)
Penalty Kill: 84.4% (4th)

Trenton Titans, Eighth Season

Location: Trenton, N.J.
Arena (Opened): Sovereign Bank Arena (1999)
Capacity: 7,605
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Rick Kowalsky, First Season
NHL Affiliate: New Jersey Devils/ Philadelphia Flyers
AHL Affiliate: Lowell Devils/ Philadelphia Phantoms

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost North Division Quarterfinals To Johnstown
(0 games to 2)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 31-36-5
Points:: 67
Division Finish: 5th
Conference Finish: 10th
Overall Finish: 18th
Goals-Per Game: 2.31 (24th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.97 (10th)
Power Play: 14.7% (21st)
Penalty Kill: 82.4% (13th)

Wheeling Nailers, 15th Season

Location: Wheeling, W.Va.
Arena (Opened): WesBanco Arena (1977)
Capacity: 5,406
Conference: American
Division: North
Coach: Glenn Patrick, Second Season (45-21-6)
NHL Affiliate: Pittsburgh Penguins
AHL Affiliate: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

2006 Kelly Cup Playoffs
Lost North Division Finals To Toledo
(2 games to 3)

2005-06 In Review
Record: 45-21-6
Points:: 96
Division Finish: 2nd
Conference Finish: 4th
Overall Finish: 7th
Goals-Per Game: 3.43 (8th)
Goals-Against Average: 2.58 (3rd)
Power Play: 17.4% (15th)
Penalty Kill: 84.3% (5th)


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ECHL Stories from October 16, 2006


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