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09-05-2009, 06:08 PM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Suburb of Boston MA
For your consideration
Found this on another site, American Hockey Blog and I'll post the link at the end. I'm not saying I verified the posters comments or am putting it up with any validity, but it is interesting.
EJHL vs NAHL, Tier III vs Tier II
Coach Jenkins is right. I've watched both leagues. The EJHL is a faster, more skilled league than the NAHL. In the Midwest, the high end players all go to the USHL. On the east coast, most of them stay and play in the EJHL because they do not need to leave to be seen by the colleges they want to attend.
College coaches apparently agree with Jenkins. According to USA Hockey's 2009 ANNUAL CONGRESS REPORT:
2008-09 D-III Placements: EJHL-65, AJHL-62, MetJHL-57, NAHL-46, CSHL-31, EmJHL-28, WSHL-23, MnJHL-20, CHA-12, USHL-12.
2008-09 D-I Placements: USHL-134, EJHL-56, NAHL-47, MetJHL-12, CSHL-9, AJHL-8, EmJHL-6, MnJHL-3.
Note that when these statistics were compiled, the EJHL had 14 teams, and the NAHL had 18 teams.
"Tier III" status for the EJHL is, accordingly, very misleading. Most people erroneously equate the Tier in which a league plays with its competitive level. The truth, however, is that USA Hockey places leagues into various "Tiers" based upon their financial models -- not based on their competitive level. Leagues which are not self-supporting, and require players to pay tuition, are classified as Tier III.
Regardless of the EJHL's talent level or college placement success, Tuition will never be eliminated, because east coast junior leagues cannot attract enough fans to be profitable. There is just too much competition for fans from DI and DIII colleges, and the ECHL, AHL and NHL, all of which have teams located in a relatively small geographic area. Throughout most of New England, you can drive 30 minutes in any direction and see a college or pro game.
So, does the EJHL "belong" in Tier III, as you say? Yes, according to USA Hockey guidelines, because the league must charge tuition to survive. Does that mean that the quality of play, competitive level or college placement success is any lower than the NAHL? Absolutely not. Just ask the NHL: 2009 NHL Central Scouting List for draft-eligible players: NAHL-0; EJHL 11.
Here's the link:
Take it all with as many grains of salt that you like !
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