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Wheeling Nailers for sale
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01-19-2012, 10:30 AM
Join Date: Oct 2008
Originally Posted by
The veteran theme is one that I have heard referenced several times in discussions that I have had with ECHL fans. Most bemoan the lack of veterans with teams. I followed the Nailers this season at the start and noticed only about 4 names from last season. Only two had been there longer than one season. That definitely needs to change.
I had proposed a franchise exemption for one veteran. This player would be a guy who has been with the team for five seasons or so. He could then become a marketing focus as well as helping with player recruiting.
You could have your six veterans with an exemption. That is seven players. Plus if the AHL teams assign five guys each that is 10 which takes the roster up to 17. Realisticly, the AHL teams will assign 3 each so you are looking at 6 plus 6. that is twelve. Leaving the franchise with 8 players who would be under 200 games. Veterans would also lead to rivalries which would drive attendance and interest up.
That's exactly what I was getting at, and you worded it much better than I could.
Fans like a familiar face, and I think part of the reason you see declining numbers is because of the ECHL (for the most part) doesn't give the chance to see a player for more than a season. In Johnstown's history, who I believe holds the record as the longest tenured ECHL team in one city, they only had 36 players who had played more than 3 or more seasons for the team. Considering the team had 619 players pass through their locker room using both AAHL and ECHL numbers, that says a lot about not being able to keep a veteran around for whatever reasons.
I'm sure that number is somewhat skewed due to emergency signings and two-game wonders. That figure of "veterans" might even be high since it qualifies a game played as a season. I know several players have come back as free agents and signed on to play for a weekend before going back into retirement.
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