Boston Bruins B's extend ECHL affiliation with Atlanta

Discussion in 'Boston Bruins' started by crimsonace, Aug 15, 2019.

  1. crimsonace

    crimsonace Registered User

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    The Bruins have announced a one-year extension of their ECHL affiliation with the Atlanta Gladiators, extending their partnership for a fifth season.

    While Atlanta seems like a strange fit - especially with a number of ECHL teams now in New England - it has one of the busiest airports in the world, so getting players from ATL to Providence is not difficult. The team is based in suburban Gwinnett County. The B's have historically not had a ton of players in the ECHL, but NHL franchises are starting to use it more and more as a tool to develop some of their later-blooming prospects, so it wouldn't be surprising to see a few more players on the ECHL-AHL pathway next year.
     
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  2. BruinsFanSince94

    BruinsFanSince94 ExpertSince94

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    I hope one day that Boston can find a way to get ahold of the ECHL team in Portland. I think there are a lot of great markets in New England for Boston to take advantage of, but seeing it's only a 1-YR extension, it's open for the future.
     
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  3. crimsonace

    crimsonace Registered User

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    No question, a New England-based affiliate would make a lot of sense long-term. NYI (Worcester) and NYR (Maine) obviously have interest in those two markets because of proximity to their Connecticut-based AHL teams. But I wonder if the B’s would be a good fit for a future Manchester return. Maine could be a fit ... the Sea Dogs were a Twins affiliate for a few years before hooking up with the Sox, and the marketing tie alone being able to sell the Bruins affiliation could be profitable to any NE market.
     
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  4. Trap Jesus

    Trap Jesus Registered User

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    Does it make me a bad Bruins fan if I had no idea we had an ECHL affiliation with Atlanta?
     
  5. crimsonace

    crimsonace Registered User

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    Not necessarily. Some teams (Detroit, Toronto, Buffalo) use the ECHL rather extensively and sign a ton of late-blooming guys to AHL contracts and let them develop in the ECHL. The Bruins are like a few others who maybe have a prospect goalie (Vladar) and 3-4 AHL-contracted skaters in Atlanta, but the trend (especially after Toronto & Buffalo's affiliates dominated the league last year) is to sign more players and use the ECHL.
     
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  6. BruinsFan37

    BruinsFan37 Registered User

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    B's basically used Atlanta to get Vladar starts rather than having him ride the pine in Providence, can't think of any other notable player on the B's payroll that is/was playing there.
     
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  7. Fenway

    Fenway Administrator Sponsor

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    The ECHL is NOT a stepping stone to the NHL.

    In baseball you can follow a AA team knowing that some of the players WILL make it to MLB - that simply is not the case with the ECHL.

    You look at ECHL attendance and in most markets, it is a tough sell

    ECHL 2018-19 team attendance at hockeydb.com
     
  8. Dom - OHL

    Dom - OHL RETIRED Sponsor

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    Boston Bruins (Atlanta Gladiators) – Head Coach Bruce Cassidy (Jacksonville, 1996-98 and Trenton, 1999-00); Assistant Coach Kevin Dean (Cincinnati, 1991-92 and Trenton, 2010-11) and Jarsolav Halak (Long Beach, 2005-06)

    Washington Capitals (South Carolina Stingrays) – Head Coach Todd Reirden (Raleigh, 1994-95; Tallahassee, 1994-96 and Jacksonville, 1995-96); Professional Development Coach Olaf Kolzig (Hampton Roads, 1990-92); Pheonix Copley (South Carolina, 2013-14); Braden Holtby (South Carolina, 2009-10) and Nathan Walker (South Carolina, 2014-15)

    ECHL has 66 former players, 42 coaches on NHL Opening Day Rosters
     
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  9. Centrum Hockey

    Centrum Hockey Registered User

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    The only way Manchester gets hockey again is a echl bruins affiliate LA/Cheeks group killed the market By thinking the fans would not notice that the Monarchs where no longer in the ahl .
     
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  10. McGarnagle

    McGarnagle Yes.

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    I know the ECHL isn't much and minor league hockey isn't a big sell, but Atlanta is a big market and getting a foothold in there can't hurt at all. They got royally screwed over by the Thrashers' ownership. It could've been developed into a good hockey market if they had competent management and an ownership group that wasn't subverting them under their noses. The AHL might do well there eventually.
     
  11. Centrum Hockey

    Centrum Hockey Registered User

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    Idk if the AHL would create a south division but if they did. It would probably be the end of Springfield and Syracuse. The longtime northeast ahl markets are running out of willing nhl partners.
     
  12. PatriceBergeronFan

    PatriceBergeronFan HFBoards Sponsor Sponsor

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    Exactly. Few people will invest in that type of market where irrelevant players play irrelevant hockey. Unfortunate, but outside of a few goalies and a very few rarities none of those players are going anywhere.

    Affordable hockey for a family I suppose.
     
  13. Fenway

    Fenway Administrator Sponsor

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    ECHL has around 500 player slots per season - The number of coaches and officials who have made it don't surprise me but those categories go back many years.
     
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  14. Dr Hook

    Dr Hook Grz-tastic Sponsor

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    Yes, it is a league primarily for those that don't have the skills to go any further but want to make a living at hockey. The Central League was the same way. It does two things relevant to the NHL: provides a venue for young coaches to develop their pro skills and gives goalies a place to get minutes. In the Central League there were a handful of affiliations that were given out and most times it was to park a young goalie so he could play.

    EDIT: I guess developing refs is a thing too.
     
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  15. CHRDANHUTCH

    CHRDANHUTCH Registered User

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    actually, crimson:

    Portland was a Miami, then known as Florida Marlins affiliate when Dan Burke started the franchise here...... New Britain was the Twins affiliate for a while before switching to Colorado.

    btw, Boston, in retrospect didn't seem to care much about Portland from 1987 on, that's why the "rivalry" over why Philadelphia got the franchise rights in 1977.... AND THAT SEEMS TO HAVE REARED ITS HEAD AT various times in Providence as much of Providence's marketing ideas were developed in Portland.....

    that would be a tough sell if Manchester returns at some point, local ownership there likely couldn't sustain any profit or losses the way AEG/LA Kings could and the jury's still out on Worcester being a success locally after being NHL Owned between St. Louis and San Jose, that's the negative con about whether Boston wants to own/operate both affiliates as they do in Providence, and the ancillary issue as to why Providence isn't already under that owner/operator since it seems they logistically are since Boston makes all the decisions anyway in Providence, just make it official.
     
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