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Tailing the Komets

On my way to Penn State

So you guys better respond on here to let me know whose jersey cost the most tonight.

Also "me" suggested we start a topic (again) on what you guys think about what would happen if the Komets joined the USHL, a junior league? We could renew the rivalry with Indianapolis for one thing and see younger players. Now, there's no way the Frankes would do this, but it's fun to talk about.

Take it away "me'' and make your case.

Posted in: Komets


Tue, 05/02/2006 - 7:18am

Oh I have no case. I don't necessarily think the Komets should go to the USHL I was just wondering what other people thought of it. I know nothing about the USHL. I was just suggesting a topic to get the people going. I didn't realize you already talked about this subject. Must of been before I paid attention to the blogs.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 7:35am

How about Indy just moves to the "new" UHL. Midwest type league....8 -10 solid teams. That's all you need. No one outside of 6 hours from each other.

And no, you wouldn't play someone 18 times. Everyone plays each other equally. With 8 teams and a 76 game schedule you would play each team about 11 times. 5 home, 6 road. Perfect.

Fort Wayne, Indy, Cincinnati, Dayton, Cleveland, Muskegon, Rockford, Kalamazoo, Quad City??, Toledo, Bloomington, IL??

Pick your eight from there and drop the puck. It's the minor leagues. Renew rivalries. There's no reason to ride a bus for 10 hours to play a team no one cares about that will draw 2,000 (or less) people.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 7:58am

Sounds good and it makes sense. Therefore it will never happen. What if the Komets joined the ECHL? Would they have to raise ticket prices as much as it would be to join the AHL? Dayton and Toledo is already there. Cinncinnati is also in the mix, they are returning next season. The ECHL looks to be a good league that is not diappearing. I know travel would increase alot but wouldn't it be worth it if the K's joined a good league that wasn't fading?

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 9:28am

I wouldn't mind seeing the Komets join the ECHL, the thing that would bother me though is the travel. Would they play the likes of ALaska...that would be a hell of a trip, I'd imagine most teams fly there. I'd love to see the Toledo/FtW rivalrly renewd, or even the Cyclones and Komets...boy the memories...

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 9:36am

btw, I won't be able to attend tonights party, I wish I could.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 10:03am

I don't know if the Fort Wayne fans would go for dropping to another level of hockey after only what 6 or 7 years. i don't believe it would work and I think attendance wouldn't be good although, And I'm saying this with absoultly no knowledge of how much it cost to run one of those teams, the ticket prices should be lowered because if I'm correct they don't pay the players, just staff and whatever other expenses to keep the team running. I would vote no and living in Lima, OH I would save my season ticket money and probably go see the Blue Jackets more often.

Tony E
Tue, 05/02/2006 - 11:12am

You want to see hard hitting, all out hustle hockey? That is junior hockey. These kids are playing for a chance to impress scouts and get a pro contract. While I am not sure it would work in Fort Wayne, if any of you have a chance to catch a OHL or other junior league game, you will LOVE IT.

Jungle Monkey
Tue, 05/02/2006 - 11:54am

I went to a USHL game in Indy this year. I was not impressed. If I'm going to watch that brand of hockey I'd rather spend my money on the NCAA. If you think that fans are screaming for physical hockey wait til they get a load of the USHL. I think attendance would drop through the floor. The USHL has it place and its not a replacement of "AA" or "AAA" minor hockey that Fort Wayne fans are used to.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 12:10pm

I think Jungle Monkey has a point. I talked with some people after the Notre Dame-Michigan game they had last year and they were impressed with that hockey. Besisded, OHL is Canadian junior hockey which has been a tradition for a long time. I don't think that tradition holds well below Michigan and Minnesota.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 12:27pm

I to was impressed with the College hockey I seen, Michigan was awesome..I watched the Frozen four and I really enjoyed it.

Tony E
Tue, 05/02/2006 - 1:54pm

There is a difference in overall talent between the OHL and the USHL but there is also a much larger pool to draw from in Canada. Even the Junior B levels are run like professional organizations. For example, here is the official website for the Chatham Maroons, one of the better teams in Ontario. http://www.chathamjrmaroons.com/ Brent Rumble used to play for them.
Anyway the United States Junior system is so disorganized and scattered it is no wonder that there is not a good scouting chain. Every league is centralized and there is little to no communication between leagues. So many good players simply get lost in the shuffle.
College hockey is great. One of the best times I have ever had at a hockey game was several years ago I went to a
North Dakota vs ND State game. The atmosphere was like something out of an IU/PU basketball game.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 2:26pm

While it may be good on paper to think about switching to the ECHL with teams like Toledo and Dayton, plus Cincinnati returning, I would like to remind everyone of three letters IHL!

In my opinion, regardless of how many secondary affiliations this league has with the NHL, the ECHL is making the same STUPID mistakes the IHL did. WHY would you want to be in a league that has teams in Alaska, Florida, California, New Jersey, Texas, Utah, and on and on?

The travel costs had to have been enormous to the Komets in the final years of the IHL with trips all over the countryside. Besides, while the UHL is far from perfect, at least most of the teams are in the Midwest.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 2:31pm

Sorry if I scared anyone, but anytime I think of the IHL, I recall fond memories of rivalries with Toledo, Dayton, Kalamazoo, and Saginaw.

Then, my thoughts turn to Salt Lake (not a bad early rivalry, but too far away), San Diego, Utah, Albany, and YIKES Orlando. Does anyone there even know where the Turner Cup is (I mean the real Turner Cup, not a picture of it)?

I mean, owners in that league struggled, but you had people like Ken Ullyot and others who would help out some of the lesser teams with players. It all changed when the league outgrew its Midwest roots.

Anytime talk of jumping to a league that is so spread out (even the AHL is too spread out anymore), it makes me remember how the IHL screwed up.

Sorry about the rant...I feel better now.

Tony E
Tue, 05/02/2006 - 4:16pm

I believe the Turner Cup resides in the archives of the Hockey Hall Of Fame in Toronto.

Hit Somebody!!!
Tue, 05/02/2006 - 7:48pm

Horrible idea to drop down to the league that Indy is in...poor attendance and poor product. It would never work here. The best idea would be Joseph's idea. The right amount of pressure on Dickie Brosal and league to reform the league into a midwestern region would make the most sense. That should be our focus is to transform this league into something greater with better travel, better roster rules, better salary rules, and a better product on the ice with improved referring as well.

Luciuk's jersey went for $2700, Millers went for 1225, and Guinn for 1200. that is the top 3. We all have a time or two given guys crap for their on ice play, but let me be the first to say, that the players held themselves with class and were perfect gentlemen tonight. They were very warm and friendly to the fans tonight and very open to talk to. I spoke to several of them and even Chief talked to me 2 times. Great party tonight and I am proud of that group of guys. Great job Komets...

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 8:02pm

I made it! The hockey home of Fort Wayne's Brian Gratz. Turner Cup is in HOF.

Also, it hasn't been announced yet, but Northern Michigan vs. Notre Dame in FW I think they are looking at Dec. 30.

Tue, 05/02/2006 - 10:43pm

sweet another college hockey game in Ft Wayne..gotta love it...

Tony E
Wed, 05/03/2006 - 7:01am

How long before IPFW gets a hockey team?
Not so far fetched. Small colleges like
Bemidji State (less than 5000 students) have very succesful programs.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 7:10am

ivisional set up for next year:


Each team plays each other team in it's division 10 times (5 & 5) = 50 games

Each team plays the other divisons teams 4 times (2 & 2) = 24 games

Two extra games are played against geographic rivals: FW-KAL, ROCK-CHI, QC-MUSK, PH-FLT, MC-ELM, DAN-ADR

With some creative scheduling, a team WEST teasm would only have to make one trip to NY each season.

Are you listening UHL?

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 7:17am

IPFW had a hockey team. I don't think it worked out to well. It was before the joined Div. 1 though.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 8:02am

Skate you missed Bloomington in your Western Conference so that would be 13 teams. Other than that the idea is good, I am a fan of the 2 conference system. We still have time for someone to come in and save a team (i.e. Missouri) before we can get into that however.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 8:30am

That's unless MC folds which I heard that they fired the entire front office staff.

Tony E
Wed, 05/03/2006 - 8:43am

Fired them??? Why???
As to the IPFW hockey, now that they are division one and can sell recruits on playing other division 1 schools, they might have a better chance for success. Plus hockey fans getting a chance to see the hometown team play Notre Dame, Michigan etc would do well at the box office.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 9:03am

Yes, IPFW did have a hockey CLUB back in 2002 and 2003 of which I was a member. It was not affiliated with the NCAA. The club was a member of the ACHA (American Collegiate Hockey Association)Division II). It was not funded by the university in any way. The only thing the university allowed us to do was use the name IPFW Mastodons. It was very difficult to get guys to play because all had to pony up about $500 each for ice time, jerseys, etc. plus all of our travel expenses. Being a young college guy, it wasn't easy getting all of the funds as well as focusing on your studies. In 2002 the club came together very late in the offseason so we had an abreviated schedule of a whopping 8 games! We started 5-0, but dropped the last 3 to finish 5-3. Not bad for a bunch of local high school guys who thought that they'd never play college hockey. Granted we didn't play with the big boys like Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, etc., but we had some good games against the U of Kentucky, Western Michigan (ACHA), U of Southern Indiana, U of Findlay, and Muskegon Community College. We had 2 home games one at the Coliseum and one at McMillen both vs. Findlay. We tried to promote the team as much as possible, but we were only able to get about 100-200 fans at our home game at the Coliseum after a K's game. It was great while it lasted, but the team folded in the middle of the second season because some players just quit showing up for games, etc. I don't foresee a team getting organized at IPFW for quite a long time, if ever. The high school hockey talent in FW is pretty good, but I don't think it's good enough support their own college team. Plus I don't know of many young guys really wanting to come to FW to play club hockey. So, there it is in a nut shell.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 9:20am

That's too bad if Motor City folds. I think that could be a good rivalry - good team and not too far away. If they stay, though, they need to update the rink or find another place to play. The Superior rink (named after the Great Lake) is the only one with any amount seats in the complex, but it has football bleachers on the upper part on one side. When a bunch of us went April 1, we had rinkside seats on the glass by the MC net. Great seats, but it seemed like only 800-900 fans showed up for a Saturday night game.
The building reminded me a lot of Stadium Arena when the Grand Rapids Owls played - at MC they had to back the zamboni out from the end of the rink and Chaser sat at the top of one section wearing his trenchcoat to broadcast the game.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 9:46am

I haven't heard why or even if it's true. The ITB site had it on there in the forums and others were saying that was a prelude to the team folding, but as of now there hasn't been any other info on the matter.

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 9:48am

I haven't heard why or even if it's true. The ITB site had it on there in the forums and others were saying that was a prelude to the team folding, but as of now there hasn't been any other info on the matter.

Tony E
Wed, 05/03/2006 - 10:14am

Greg the last I heard about the mechanics up here was that they were actually thinking of building a new arena. Who knows lol.
Pucker28 thanks for the information. The only difference is if they got a sanctioned NCAA team together then they could offer scholarships to players outside of Fort Wayne. The city supports hockey and if it can do well in towns like Huntsville Alabama it can certainly do well in Fort Wayne. Like anything else it would take advertising and a good sound plan but the city has the facilities and if they could get home games with Notre Dame, Ohio State etc, fans would come out. At least I think? Anyone else? Would you go see an IPFW Michigan State hockey game?

Wed, 05/03/2006 - 10:29am

I don't know any particulars on MC but I know that many teams layoff many in the front office during the summer. Could just be that going on there.

No way on the ECHL or any other existing league. A new league would have to be created or the UHL would have to dump Danbury, Elmira, Adirondack.

It makes all the sense in the world. Of course there are questions like how to get a team to move leagues, etc. But, if it were to gradually happen over 3-5 years then the end result will pay off.

The College game may be exciting and all, but I don't see people in this town getting excited about an entire season of it, unless they could win a National Championship. If they have no shot at a Championship then people won't get behind it in big enough numbers to support it.

Komets PA
Wed, 05/03/2006 - 10:50am

Thanks everyone for making it out to the party last night. Chaser did a great job as always and you fans really made a difference in helping out the charities, especially the St. Pierre mask and the quilt. BTW, I am heading up to the Hall Of Fame on Friday, my first trip ever to Toronto. Hoping to see the Turner Cup again and see what other Komet goodies are in it's hallowed halls. If anyone has been there, I could use a few hints as what to look for as well as proper adult beverage establishments. We are staying in Oakville, a few miles from Toronto. We are going because my 15 year old nephew got an invite to be evaluated in front of some Junior and College coaches. Hopefully one day he'll don the orange and black. We'll see! Take care and send those recommendations.