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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Tailing the Komets

Some quotes from today

``I am very well aware of the tradition of hockey here in Fort Wayne. When you think about iconic markets in minor league hockey across the country that have survived over the decades, It's a very, very select list. Certainly you think of places like Hershey, Rochester, Providence, but certainly Fort Wayne needs to be at or near the top of that list. What has occurred here over the last six decades is truly amazing.''

ECHL Commissioner Brian McKenna

``...The best league we think we've ever been in. Initially we will work on our core group of players to bring those guys back who we feel we want on this team moving forward. Then we will work from that end to build the whole team.''

Komets general manager David Franke

``We're going to have a lot of those guys back because we believe they are quality players no matter what league they play in. the rest will be through hard work and on the phone.

``It's a new challenge, a new league. The adrenalin is flowing already to play in Kalamazoo again and play in Cincinnati and Toledo. I really look forward to the challenge of winning our division against those teams and hopefully moving on and challenging for the cup.''

Komets coach Al Sims

``This is where we belong. The decision we made two years ago was a great decision. The Central Hockey League is a great league, great people, great owners but geographically it just didn't work any more... This is a permanent deal. This isn't a two-year deal or a five-year deal or anything like that, we're in the league.''

Komets president Michael Franke



Fri, 05/18/2012 - 11:09am

Without thinking it out all the way through, I think this could be the first birth pang of a nationwide super "AA" league. 

I loved the instant rivalries that the CHL provided ( Rapid City, Wichita, Missouri ).  But for a minor league, especially hockey, to be strewn over such large areas without natural rivals ( Rapid City, Arizona, Rio Grande Valley) is too much to ask.  I fear that, soon, it just won't make any sense at all.  ( As if anything to do with minor league hockey makes sense, but you all know what I mean). The very strongest franchises will survive and someday, I hope, become part of the ECHL as well. Automatically Rapid City will have Colorado back and Arizona would have the Southern California teams. Instead of having two leagues competing, they would be helping breathe new life into some struggling franchises and stregthen each other.

In my opinion and for the good of minor league hockey, a natonwide "AA" league is the only thing that makes any sense and will save the remaining CHL franchises.

Fans of the Komets should take a minute and thank the CHL for being there when Komet and IHL hockey came to a crossroad.  It is a good league, the games were fun and battle filled.  The rivalries were intense and the play was fun to watch.  So, Thank -you CHL. 

I just hope that before too long ( and for some before it is too late), that you add the (E) to CHL and we can enjoy those hockey moments again.

Then the birth pangs would be over and the delivery of a beautiful baby would be at hand.


Fri, 05/18/2012 - 2:25pm

Alan, best post of the ECHL era " Without thinking"

Fri, 05/18/2012 - 2:44pm

I would echo Alan's sentiments.

Going into a new league is always a challenge. You never know what to expect.

Obviously, year 1 in the CHL was an eye-opening experience for everyone involved with the Komets, but they adapted and won a cup in year 2.

I was very pleased with the quality of play in the CHL, and while they were so far away, the rivalry with Rapid City quickly intensified. While we are about to say hello again to Kalamazoo, Cincinnati and Toledo, I would hope we one day get to play Allen, RC, Wichita, Missouri, Tulsa, Quad City and Texas again soon.