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Sabres approached by USHL to field team

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Old
09-23-2012, 03:50 PM
  #1
Taro Tsujimoto
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Sabres approached by USHL to field team

They would use the rinks at the Harbor Center (once it's complete), but the problem is, there aren't any existing USHL teams within close proximity to Buffalo (the closest is in Youngstown, Ohio), which is making the Sabres reluctant to do so if they don't add more eastern teams.

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The 16-team USHL is trying to grow in stature to rival the Canadian junior leagues. The Sabres have been approached about placing a team in the league once their Webster Block project is complete.

"We as an organization are interested in the development of the USHL," Black said. "The reality right now is there just aren't enough teams in the Eastern part of the country. Unless or until you get more teams closer to this area, it wouldn't fit with our philosophy, which would be making sure it's a positive experience for kids."

The closest team to Buffalo plays in Youngstown, Ohio. The rest of the teams are in the Midwest.

"A kid still in high school that's playing in Buffalo has got to get on a bus and play every other weekend in Sioux City and elsewhere," Black said. "That would be something that we wouldn't be eager to pursue.

"That said, if and when they do get that critical mass to the East, we'd be very interested in having those conversations. That could include whether we would own a team or facilitate the ownership of a team or be the landlord in either a combination of our new facility or existing facility. I'm a big fan of bringing more things to Buffalo that are hockey-centric, and that's a premier league."
http://www.buffalonews.com/apps/pbcs...120929573/1004

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09-23-2012, 05:28 PM
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Interesting. Agree with Black that they'd want at least one team closer...but if they could make it work I'd be all for it.

Not sure though what other cities on this side would be interested in fielding an AHL team. Erie already has the OHL, not sure if Rochester/Syracuse would be able to support both AHL and USHL, Elmira has their own issues, but if they drop the ECHL then maybe...could Jamestown support USHL? Pittsburgh? Cleveland/Akron/Canton? I'd think they'd want at least one more team somewhere in Ohio, maybe also one in New York/Pennsylvania.

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09-23-2012, 05:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrigsAndGirgs View Post
Interesting. Agree with Black that they'd want at least one team closer...but if they could make it work I'd be all for it.

Not sure though what other cities on this side would be interested in fielding an AHL team. Erie already has the OHL, not sure if Rochester/Syracuse would be able to support both AHL and USHL, Elmira has their own issues, but if they drop the ECHL then maybe...could Jamestown support USHL? Pittsburgh? Cleveland/Akron/Canton? I'd think they'd want at least one more team somewhere in Ohio, maybe also one in New York/Pennsylvania.
Players in the USHL are purely amateur. They're completely unpaid. The only money that goes towards player costs is cash for player host families. They don't need crazy attendance to support it.

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09-23-2012, 06:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrigsAndGirgs View Post
Interesting. Agree with Black that they'd want at least one team closer...but if they could make it work I'd be all for it.

Not sure though what other cities on this side would be interested in fielding an AHL team. Erie already has the OHL, not sure if Rochester/Syracuse would be able to support both AHL and USHL, Elmira has their own issues, but if they drop the ECHL then maybe...could Jamestown support USHL? Pittsburgh? Cleveland/Akron/Canton? I'd think they'd want at least one more team somewhere in Ohio, maybe also one in New York/Pennsylvania.
Well, the Jamestown Ironmen play in the NAHL, so there's already a junior team there, albeit Tier II.
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NAHL - North Division

Team Arena Location
Jamestown Ironmen Jamestown Saving Bank Arena Jamestown, New York
Janesville Jets Janesville Ice Arena Janesville, Wisconsin
Johnstown Tomahawks Cambria County War Memorial Arena Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings Wings West Kalamazoo, Michigan
Michigan Warriors Perani Arena and Event Center Flint, Michigan
Port Huron Fighting Falcons McMorran Arena Port Huron, Michigan
Springfield Jr. Blues Nelson Center Springfield, Illinois
Soo Eagles Pullar Stadium Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan

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09-23-2012, 07:32 PM
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I'd go to this. I've been saying for years I'd like to start going to see some lower level hockey. But, I never did it. If it was right downtown I'd definitely go.

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09-23-2012, 07:42 PM
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Go Ironmen! that being said, last few games I went to the attendance was sad. In the past 4-5 years we have had 3 different teams playing so the fan base kinda became frustrated and didnt figure this team would last either even though the NAHL has been the most established league we have had so far. Hoping this season the fans will come back!

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09-24-2012, 12:21 AM
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I refuse to support the Ironmen because of the dirty dealings that saw the Jets kicked out of the Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena in favor of the Ironmen and their scofflaw of an owner.

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09-24-2012, 01:51 PM
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I refuse to support the Ironmen because of the dirty dealings that saw the Jets kicked out of the Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena in favor of the Ironmen and their scofflaw of an owner.
Dont forget the Disaster that was the Jamestown Vikings...phew

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09-28-2012, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by johnblah View Post
Dont forget the Disaster that was the Jamestown Vikings...phew
That was a complete mess. I still don't know if they ever got the book thrown at them for absolutely trashing that building.

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