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Canadian Junior Hockey Devoted to the CHL (OHL, QMJHL, WHL), BCHL, CJAHL, and its leagues.

After Juniors?

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01-28-2009, 06:59 PM
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After Juniors?

whats up everyone

what level of hockey besides the AHL/NHL is there right after juniors in canada?

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01-28-2009, 08:13 PM
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Well, I think this is kind of silly but I'll entertain it anyway.

A lot of guys, players like Joel Ward of Nashville, will go from the CHL to college and play in Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS). Some guys get noticed, some don't, but either way, you've got your degree and you're fairly safe if the hockey career doesn't pan out.

If you don't, there are quite a few options for you:

Obviously, there are a number of minor-pro feeder leagues for the NHL and AHL. Some guys go to the ECHL, which is the lowest-level affiliate of the NHL and is a starting point for a lot of project players, particularly goaltenders. A large number of players will go there undrafted/unsigned and try to work their way up the ladder. David Desharnais with Hamilton (and possilby Montreal at some point) is a great recent example. You can also find a lot of NCAA players here.

There are two more major "AA" leagues: the Central Hockey League (CHL) and Intramural International Hockey League (IHL). The CHL is a regional league based out of the Southwest, with teams in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. This is where a lot of CMLs will go to try and make a name for themselves. Some players will come out of the CHL to the AHL, but I can't think of any that have made the NHL. This league probably has the greatest emphasis on fisticuffs of the three. As for the IHL, it's a much more regionally concentrated league in and around Michigan, but once had teams in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic that folded for various reasons. I don't really know much about it anymore, but if it's anything like it was the last year I followed it, it's pretty slow-paced, the tickets are cheap, and there's at least one fight per game, if not more. The only two clubs you need to know about are Fort Wayne and Kalamazoo, particularly Fort Wayne, who outdraw a lot of AHL teams.

Then you get to Single-A. The only really noteworthy league at this point is the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL), which has been fairly successful and may be looking to expand in the next couple of years if/when the economy picks back up. The rest of the leagues at this level are pretty rag-tag, and most are only semi-pro. If you've fallen this far, the dream is probably long gone.

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01-29-2009, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Dolo09 View Post
whats up everyone

what level of hockey besides the AHL/NHL is there right after juniors in canada?
The short answer is that if players don't get into pro hockey, they use their education packages and go to University and usually play there. Most Canadian university teams are made up of ex-journeymen CHLers.

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02-04-2009, 08:53 PM
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AAA Senior Hockey! Theo Fluery played in that, as well as many former pro players in it as well.

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02-04-2009, 10:35 PM
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Alexandre Burrows went from the ECHL to AHL to NHL.

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