AHL Read This: Thunder Bay Costs Rise, Travel Tight for IceCaps Stars, Royals Flyers, Blashill Re-signs

A look into the world of the American Hockey League outside of just the normal game re-caps.

Thunder Bay event centre costs start to rise

Thunder Bay Costs Rise

Costs to build the Thunder Bay Event Centre are rising.
(Photo from www.ceiarchitecture.com)

From CBC News

City councillors in Thunder Bay spent hours Monday night debating how much more support is needed for the proposed event centre.

City administration said it needs the money to pay for design work relating to moving the Camelot Street hydro substation. The money would also pay the wage of a person to oversee the project, legal fees related to signing contracts with a potential American Hockey League team, and other environmental and parking studies.

“I’m a little concerned that had we known these costs sooner, maybe we could have applied to Fednor and to NOHFC to help in this million dollar expansion of phase three,” said Coun. Mark Bentz.

But Coun. Brian McKinnon echoed the opinion of many on council.

“We are not happy with it, but I think the sense is that it’s something that we can’t stop doing now,” he said. Read More…

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Travel makes for tight turnaround as IceCaps, Stars get ready for Game 3 tonight

By Brendan McCarthy

Some notes and numbers as the St. John’s IceCaps and Texas Stars get ready for Game 3 of the American Hockey League Calder Cup final tonight at Mile One Centre:

On Tuesday, the day after the IceCaps beat the Stars 2-1 to tie their best-of-seven series at one game apiece, the teams shared a charter flight from Austin, Tex., to St. John’s, travelling nearly 4,300 kilometres, with a refuelling stopover in New Hampshire.

With that much travel on the only off-day between Games 2 and 3, Stars’ coach Willie Desjardins agreed it’s almost as if there is no break in the early part of the schedule.

“It’s like playing three (games) back-to-back,” said Desjardins, whose team won Sunday’s series-opener 6-3.

“But the good thing is that it’s the same for both teams. There’s no advantage.”

And Stars and IceCaps are guaranteed some good rest after tonight’s contest.

With Mile One hosting the Canadian Anesthesiologists’ Society’s annual general meeting and trade show this week, there’s a nearly five-day break between tonight’s matchup and Game 4 on Monday. Read More…

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Reading Royals Announce Affiliation Agreement with Philadelphia Flyers

From Hockey Fights.com

Reading, Pa. – The Reading Royals and Philadelphia Flyers jointly announced that they have entered into an affiliation arrangement under which the Royals will receive players designated for assignment within the professional hockey operations development system of the Flyers.

“We’re very excited to announce our new affiliation with the Philadelphia Flyers,” said Royals President Drew Bell. “The Royals are committed to achieving excellence in in all facets our operations, and we’re confident that by joining forces with the Flyers and the Phantoms of the AHL we’re taking a significant positive step in that direction. We see this as a perfect fit for our team, as both organizations have a proven track record of winning and are supported by legendarily passionate fans. We look forward to teaming up with what is unquestionably the region’s premier hockey organization as we all work towards strengthening and growing interest in and support for professional hockey in southeast Pennsylvania. Read More…

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Red Wings give Griffins coach Blashill contract extension

Art Regner | FOX Sports Detroit

In a move that has foreshadowing written all over it, the Red Wings announced on Wednesday that they have signed Grand Rapids head coach Jeff Blashill to a new contract that keeps him in the organization through the 2016-17 season.

“I have a great job,” the 40-year-old Blashill said. “I work for a great organization. I enjoy working for (Wings GM) Ken Holland and (assistant GM)Ryan Martin. I enjoy coaching the Grand Rapids Griffins. It’s a great fit for my family.”

“I feel really lucky to have the job that I have and to have the opportunity to extend the time period in which I’m secured to do that. I was excited about.”

With a year remaining on his old contract, the Wings approached Blashill about working out a new deal right after the Griffins were eliminated from the AHL playoffs May 18. Read More…

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IceCaps have developed into an organizational success story for Jets

By: Tim Campbell | Winnipeg Free Press

WHY are the St. John’s Ice Caps in the Calder Cup final starting Sunday? There are many reasons, two of which are the Winnipeg Jets’ top affiliate is neither micro-managed nor micro-focused on winning.

For a long time as the Manitoba Moose, True North, now the owners of the Jets, had winning as just about its only goal in the AHL. It was in an affiliation with the Vancouver Canucks but it was through an era that by and large there wasn’t an abundance of help from Vancouver.

The GM of the Moose and in that continuing role with the IceCaps is Craig Heisinger. As the Jets assistant GM, he now sits on the other side of the table, his priority what is good for the NHL team. But Heisinger also knows the what the relationship looks like from his former chair and so development has in no way overrun winning in this constant tug-of-war.

Heisinger and Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff, whose background includes a successful managing stint with both the IHL and AHL Chicago Wolves, would seem to be uniquely qualified to maximize and grow their assets from the AHL level. Read More…

Bob Howard

About Bob Howard

Owner/Host of the Power Play Post Show for 10 + years. Credentialed media member in Binghamton with the B-Sens. I have also done color commentary on the B-Sens & Manchester Monarchs radio broadcasts.
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