1. namttebih Registered User

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    Hey guys, pardon the ignorance and feel free to lock this up once I get an answer but....

    Would the level of hockey in the USHL be somewhere between the CHL and all other Junior A (BCHL, OJHL ect) in Canada?
    Edit: apologises for the lack of caps in the title. Please fix mod.

    Cheers
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2016
  2. herbst20 Registered User

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    I think that is a fair assessment.

    I spoke to Jacob Hayhurst who played in both the OJHL ( For the League Champion Toronto Patriots) and the USHL (For the Anderson Cup Cedar Rapids Roughriders), and he stated the biggest difference was the depth of the USHL. He stated in the OJHL teams basically had one really good line vs the USHL where teams can roll 3-4 lines. He also noted there is a drastic speed difference in the USHL vs the OJHL.

    I am huge USHL supporter but I am not under the delusion that the USHL is on par with major junior teams.......yet anyway.
     
  3. namttebih Registered User

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    Cool, thanks. I'd love to check out a game. I'm in the States quite often so I'm going to go out of my way to find a game next season.
     
  4. taylor16 Registered User

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    There is some incredible talent in the USHL. Something I have noticed is that the players still haven't "gone all in" to the team system sometimes so it can lend to a bit of chaos on the ice. That is changing over the last few years as the league is getting more recognition outside of the US development teams. I don't think it will ever approach the quality or depth of the Canadian junior leagues but it's very good competition.
     
  5. sbkbghockey Registered User

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    http://thejuniorhockeynews.com/rating-the-junior-hockey-leagues-2016-edition-major-junior-and-ushl/

    This season the Jr Hockey News ranked the USHL just ahead of the OHL (1A ranking). Last season they had the OHL rated 1A and USHL 1B,

    I'd say that's a fair statement. The USHL is right there when comparing the level to major juniors. It shows in the number of draft picks from the USHL as well as the strength of USA in the World Juniors and other international junior level competitions. Most of the players on the World Junior teams are USHL players or College Freshmen with USHL experience.

    As the NCAA route to the NHL has progressed in the past 10-20 years, the USHL has seen more top prospects stay at home instead of jumping to the CHL, that's greatly increased the high level talent in the league.

    I'd personally still have the OHL ranked 1st with the USHL slightly behind that.
     
  6. TcFlint Registered User

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    I too would probably have the OHL slightly ahead of the USHL, but both are top notch and the USHL continues to progress.
     
  7. Whalers Fan Go Habs!

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    I am a former longtime season ticket holder of the Plymouth Whalers and currently have US NTDP season tickets since the OHL moved out and USA Hockey moved in to Plymouth. I think TCFlint provides a pretty accurate assessment. The USHL seems to be gaining ground on the OHL, but I would still put the OHL ahead in overall talent and quality of play. The USHL is quite entertaining, though.
     
  8. sbkbghockey Registered User

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    As a sidenote to the overall USHL thread. How's the transition from OHL to the USNTDP been- Have many other of the Whalers season tix holders re-upped with Team USA? How's atmosphere for the games compared to the OHL (crowd, game presentation, etc...)?

    I know USA Hockey did a reno to the facility when they took it over and they intend to make it a marquee venue for the NTDP as well as other USA Hockey events.
     
  9. NTDP Registered User

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    I can't speak as far as attendance because I haven't been to a game there, but have seen many on Fasthockey. Some nights are better than others. I think some people are lenient on going out to a lot of U-16 games on a Friday night because of how they get beat at times playing older and skilled competition. But WhalerFan can answer that more.

    imo I think people will come around once more people get out to some games. Also as the first two years go by and more international tournaments are hosted, like the upcoming WJC evaluation games. They should sell it hard how many NTDP alums will be out there and just how many of them are so close to playing in the NHL.
     
  10. Whalers Fan Go Habs!

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    The crowds were quite a bit smaller last season than with the Whalers. I am not sure how many season ticket holders re-upped -- in our section most did come back, but we did lose a few people. Attendance for the U18 was definitely better than the U17. I think the U18 crowds were between 1,000 - 1,500 for most games, while the U17's struggled to get 800 people.

    The crowds have been quieter for the NTDP games than with the Whalers. The horns and cowbells after goals are gone (my wife didn't bring her cowbell, either). The PA announcer was not as entertaining as Chris from the Whalers, but new video boards were installed in two corners that the team used effectively for player introductions, goal replays, etc.

    One big difference was the lack of visiting fans in comparison to the OHL. Most of the people attending for the visiting team seemed to be relatives or friends of players. In the past, we would see lots of traveling fans from the visiting OHL cities -- especially from Windsor, London, Saginaw and Kitchener.

    The Five Nations U17 international tournament drew well for the Team USA games, though. We missed the Saturday night game between Team USA and Russia (were out of town), but that game was close to a sellout.

    I am not sure how well the U20 WJC evaluation camp games will draw, as it's summer time and USA Hockey hasn't really promoted the event much. We have not received a single thing from them to order tickets, and I had forgotten the event was starting this weekend until I drove by the arena and saw something on the message board.

    Hopefully the crowds will increase some this year. The one nice thing about smaller crowds last year was no lines at the restroom or bar, plus it was easier to get into the restaurant before games. :laugh:
     
  11. NTDP Registered User

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    USHL just released the schedule for the upcoming season. The NTDP opens up against Muskegon then back to backs against Youngstown at home. Doesn't specify if it is the U18 or U17 teams though. Always look forward to checking out the U18 schedule and seeing what college teams they play. Watching them play D-1 competition is so entertaining. They don't usually release that schedule until late though.
     
  12. Whalers Fan Go Habs!

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    The games versus NCAA opponents were very entertaining last season. The Notre Dame game, especially, was quite good, although it was odd seeing a game end in a tie -- I have not seen a tie hockey game in many years.

    I renewed our season tickets for the upcoming season. Also included are tickets to next week's WJC Eval Camp games. We are just planning on going to the Saturday games, as the others are in the afternoon during the week (there may be a game this Sunday, too). According to Char from the box office, there may also be another 5 Nations type tournament this season.
     
  13. NTDP Registered User

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    That'd be cool to see another five nations tournament held there. I think the U17 Four nations is always held in the states and hosted by the program, don't quote me on that though. I'll be attending the game vs Canada on Aug 6th. Will be my first WJC type game ever...really excited.
     
  14. Whalers Fan Go Habs!

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    I'll see you at the game on August 6th. We will be in our usual seats in Section 113. Your ticket also gets into the 4pm game (I think it's Sweden vs. Finland). We may watch a little of that game, then get dinner at the restaurant before the USA - Canada game.
     
  15. NTDP Registered User

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    Sounds good! I got my seats in the usual 113 as well, I'll see you there. Yeah I'm trying to catch the Fin-Swe game as well. Finland will be a really good team in this tournament again. I'm staying overnight this time, any hotels you recommend? Also, we are going out for a few drinks after the game and looking into any decent bars around the area. Thanks!
     
  16. Whalers Fan Go Habs!

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    A Holiday Inn Express opened right next to the arena last season -- you could walk to the arena from there, as it's adjacent to the north end of the arena parking lot. A Hilton Garden Inn is located just south of the arena, too. There are also Comfort Inn and Red Roof Inn motels 2-3 miles away at I-275 and Ann Arbor Road.

    If you want to splurge, there is the Inn at St. John's one mile east of the arena, but it is quite expensive.

    Downtown Plymouth, which is only a couple of miles away, has lots of nightlife. Our favorite places are Sean O'Callahan's (an Irish pub) and Ironwood Bar & Grill (sports bar with incredible pizza). Other places we frequent are the Box Bar (been around since my parents were growing up in Plymouth and has an incredible beer selection but mediocre food), The Post Bar, and Stella's. There are numerous other places, too. It's a great place to walk around.

    Other places not in downtown Plymouth but nearby include The Rusty Bucket (very nice sports bar with very good food one mile east of the arena) and Karl's Cabin, which has dueling pianos entertainment some weekends (several miles west of the arena). And there is always CJ's restaurant at the arena, but all the other places I mentioned except Box Bar have better food (although CJ's is good, too).

    The parking structure in downtown Plymouth is supposed to close August 1st for a month of repairs. If that happens, parking may be a challenge, so the above places outside the downtown area would be good alternatives.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2016
  17. NTDP Registered User

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    Thank you for the information, we'll check it out!
     
  18. JDogindy Jerk

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    Good to see the league get better.

    Maybe one day, they'll be in s NHL game.
     
  19. NTDP Registered User

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    That'd be really cool to see. I'm guessing you're referring to EA Sports NHL franchise. Might be tough with the USHL being connected with NCAA hockey which I think doesn't allow it right now but would for sure be a good addition to market the league and everything that comes with it.
     
  20. bobg1 Registered User

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    The USHL is equal to the BCHL
     
  21. 2001HockeyDude Registered User

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    I'm sorry, what?

    The USHL is the top 1 or 2 junior leagues in North America, I would say on par or just slightly behind the OHL but accelerating very quickly and is poised to take the top spot.

    Your observation would make more sense if this was 2012 or earlier. But, alas, it is 2017 and the the USHL/NCAA is producing higher number of NHL draft picks than the OHL or other Canadian leagues.
     
  22. NTDP Registered User

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    The USHL is above the BCHL. A lot of USHL cuts end up on BCHL rosters. And it is one of the top junior leagues now in the world. Somebody posted earlier the link to where multiple scouts said it's better than the QMJHL as a whole and only behind the OHL and on par with the Dub. You see the results with the World Junior A challenge. However the CHL is a 60 team junior league and the sheer number of draft picks coming out of it mathematically is more than the USHL, however "The U" did have more draft picks a few years ago than any one individual CHL league. So the ratio is very comparable with the 17 member clubs in the USHL.

    One thing that I hope does not happen is some really good junior aged players from the east coast playing in the newly created National Collegiate Development Conference which could basically become an east coast USHL for kids to stay closer to home and play a high level of junior hockey. For the forseable future though the USHL is the top league in the states and will stay that way. I've said to people before I bet they want to eventually have a nationwide USHL like they do the CHL. The numbers of players that can play at that high of a level just aren't there yet to create two new leagues. Commissioner Fallen has mentioned other leagues have shot themselves in the foot by expanding to quickly and it waters down the league. Which is why the USHL has stuck with its 17 teams. As more and more kids develop and can play at the highest levels in more non traditional markets you will see more of a demand for more teams.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  23. Whalers Fan Go Habs!

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    While the USHL is getting closer to the CHL competitively, they still are far behind the Canadian juniors when it comes to top-end talent -- meaning players taken in the 1st round of the NHL Draft, and especially in upper half of the 1st round. If you remove the US NTDP players from the USHL list of players, you find few players from other USHL teams being taken in those spots. You are not seeing players like McDavid, Crosby, Hall, Stamkos, Tavares, Ekblad, Seguin, Drouin, etc. coming out of the USHL.
     
  24. NTDP Registered User

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    This is true, I think one day the USHL will have more first rounders from regular member clubs as it grows. You're seeing some really good players get cut from the NTDP and go to other USHL clubs. (Krystian Krygier)
     
  25. 2001HockeyDude Registered User

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    Good point. Top end players coming from the CHL is hard to argue.

    Your point about good players being cut from NTDP is very apparent in the birth years I follow (2000 and 2001). There are definitely legitimate top players on the NTDP. Turcotte being my favorite forward.

    The problem is the selection of that team is so politically and "good ol' boy" club motivated it makes that entire program laughable. Many great players get cut or overlooked for a player that has a family NHL, Olympic, or USA Hockey pedigree. When you actually look at the players and their connections it becomes very obvious.
     

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