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Tailing the Komets

Good news for IceMen, Komets

From the Evansville IceMen site: THE ICEMEN WILL BE THE HOCKEY TENANT AT THE NEW DOWNTOWN EVANSVILLE ARENA! Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel made the announcement at a press conference this afternoon. The IceMen will finish this season at Swonder Ice Arena, then move downtown next season!
More details will be posted on EvansvilleIceMen.com later today!

That's good news for the future of the CHL team and should help the Komets long-term.According to an Evansville city press release, ``Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel announced today that the Evansville IceMen have been selected to be the home hockey team for the new Evansville Arena. The IceMen, who play in the Central Hockey League (CHL), were chosen after a lengthy and deliberate process in
which they were competing against teams from the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) and the U.S. Hockey League (USHL).

“The selection of the IceMen is a significant step forward for the new Evansville Arena. We anticipate that hockey will boost overall event and attendance numbers at the arena and it will bring more than 100,000 people to downtown Evansville each year,” said Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel. “The IceMen already have a loyal fan base and we look forward to seeing that grow as they begin play in the arena next year.”

A Request for Proposals (RFP) for a home hockey team for the arena was issued in August. The three leagues that responded to the RFP were asked to make presentations to the hockey subcommittee of the Evansville Arena Project Committee. A series of follow-up questions were then sent to each league.

“We were very impressed with the presentations from all of the leagues. Each demonstrated a

desire to have Evansville as part of their organizations, but in the end we felt that the IceMen

would be the best fit for the new Evansville Arena and our community. The subcommittee also

recognizes what the IceMen have done to improve their level of play with their move to the CHL

and their commitment as an organization overall,” said Brian Williams, chairman of the hockey


Posted in: Komets


Wed, 11/10/2010 - 7:29pm

FANTASTIC! !!! Congrats to Evansville! !!!!

Blueline Baby
Wed, 11/10/2010 - 7:37pm

Awesome....that is good news for them and for the league.

Wed, 11/10/2010 - 9:12pm

How is this helping the Komets long-term? I saw that written, then not expanded on at all in the article. Did I skim over it? Is it just helping the Komets by having another team "close" that they will play against over and over in the long run like Dayton? If I did read over the information, I apologize.

Wed, 11/10/2010 - 9:19pm

I have to admit that I never thought the Icemen would beat out the USA Hockey backed USHL... Darn glad they did!!!

Thu, 11/11/2010 - 7:36am

Funny how on many boards posters refuse to use logic in thinking this situation out. Let's put some facts together. 1. Geary (sp) the Iceman owner is a very successful local businessman and well liked in the area.
2. Geary starts a team which can seamlessly move into the new arena.
3. Geary makes guarantees that other 'out of town' groups cannot match.
4. Geary develops a crowd base before the arena is even finished.
To use a basketball term it was a 'slam dunk' from the beginning. Unless there were major issues with Geary or his business practices there's no way the city is going to ignore a serious bid from a very successful LOCAL businessman.

Thu, 11/11/2010 - 12:14pm

My feelings were the ECHL had a good shot at it along with the CHL. I could see the ECHL making concessions just to stick it to the CHL although for all I know the CHL may have done that. I also know nothing of who the potential owners would have been in the other two leagues and if owners weren't already lined up then the city would have been foolish to even consider those leagues. The issue was money and the USHL isn't a big money maker unless the arena is available dirt cheap as far as I know (in other words I could be wrong on that).

Based on my conversations with some of the Evansville fans that were here it was basically a move by the mayor to try to get more money (for the city of course) out of it. He basically set up a competition between the leagues hoping to improve the city's position without increasing its risk.

Those who have been around minor league hockey could say it was foolish and others could say it was the smart thing to do, looking out for the city's best interest. When Fort Wayne wanted a new baseball park downtown they didn't go looking for a different league to put a team into it and there are those who feel they should have.

kometswin, your logic makes a lot of sense but in the world of politics logic doesn't always enter the formula, if ever.

By your logic (I'm not being critical here) it was foolish for the city to even consider other leagues, just a waste of time and money to decide something a couple of phone calls could have probably resolved if there was anything that needed resolving in the first place.

I'm in your camp on this, I feel it should have been a slam dunk from the beginning and courting other leagues, especially with no owners lined up, was a mistake or possibly just a show for political reasons.

Blake Sebring
Thu, 11/11/2010 - 12:32pm

I never had any doubt if Ron Geary decided he wanted it, he was going to get it. He's probably one of the top five richest owners in the CHL.

Mr Snufflupugus
Thu, 11/11/2010 - 6:11pm

Good news for the league and the state of Indiana.

Thu, 11/11/2010 - 8:58pm

Well, alot of people were saying that it seemed logical for the city to go with the established team, myself included; but there were other factors that gave the USHL a very good chance.

1. Geary is NOT very well liked in the community from what I have been able to gather... He has the reputation for just shutting things down if he doesnt get his way. He put many people out of work down that way in some of his negotiations... No one doubted his resources or pockets, just some of his past business practices...

2. The USHL doesnt need the type of attendance figures that a professional team needs just to break even. They dont play thier players and have a much smaller budget than professional teams.

3. They have a base they can start from (1400-1500?); but what happens next season when prices will have to rise dramatically from this seasons prices?

I dont believe this was quite the slam dunk that some are assuming. I am very glad that the Icemen came out on top!

Blueline Baby
Tue, 11/16/2010 - 9:47pm

Glad they will be there to break up the next fight the Komet Squirt team has....we shared the ice with them, and they came on for their practice without it being cleaned, just as our players were leaving, a fight broke out (pushing and shoving, no punches thrown, really). The IceMen had to break it up. Good guys....thanks to them!!