Friday, August 10, 2018

Weekly Update - Allen Announces Two More Players, Players Announced by All ECHL Teams, Interview With Commissioner-Elect Ryan Crelin, Garrett Clarke's Blog, Who Played in 74 Regular Season Games Last Season

The Allen Americans made two player announcements this week (J.C. Campagna & Josh Atkinson) to bring the roster up to eight players. Here is the list

Joel Chouinard
Mike Gunn
Josh Atkinson

Chad Butcher
J.C. Campagna
Matt Foget
Casey Pierro-Zabotel
Braylon Shmyr

J.C. Campagna - On Wednesday the Americans announced that J.C. Campagna has re-signed and will join the team for the second year. Campagna played in 13 regular season games for Allen at the end of last season and had nine points (5G, 4A). J.C played in all seven playoff games in Allen's first round loss to Idaho, scored two goals including the game winning goal in game three. "I am super excited to be back in Allen," said Campagna. "Coach Martinson reached out to me after the season to ask if I wanted to come back to Texas, and it was a no brainer! Last year we didn't have the finish we wanted, but I can guarantee the returning players will use that as motivation to get the Kelly Cup back to Allen this season." Here is the complete press release issued by the Americans:

Allen signs defenseman Josh Atkinson

Josh Atkinson - On Friday the Allen Americans announced the signing of Josh Atkinson, a 6'0" 195 pound left shot defenseman who turned pro in 2016. Josh is from Spruce Grove, Alberta which is a suburb just west of Edmonton. Stu Barnes, who finished his long NHL career with the Dallas Stars and was an assistant with the team as well as hall of fame goalie Grant Fuhr were born in Spruce Grove.

Atkinson attended the University of Alaska (Fairbanks) and in his four year collegiate career never missed a game. His degree is in accounting and he was selected to the WCHA all-academic team three times.

After finishing his collegiate career (2016) Josh signed with the Atlanta Gladiators. As a rookie in 2016-17 he had 50 points (10G, 40A) in 66 games with Atlanta. Last season Atkinson signed an AHL deal with San Antonio but spent the entire season in Atlanta. His playing time was limited (32 games) due to injuries.

Here are the highlights from an Atlanta game in 2017 when they beat Adirondack 4-3 in overtime. Josh was the #1 star of the game with two goals and an assist including the game winner in overtime.


- In December of 2016, his rookie season in Atlanta, Josh Atkinson was interviewed by the local paper in a get to know you Q & A. Here is that interview:

- Here is the press release issued by the Allen Americans on the Josh Atkinson signing:

- Here is the complete list of players announced by each ECHL team. It is important to remember the number of players announced is not the same as players signed. This list is changing daily but these are the numbers of players announced by each ECHL team as of this morning according to the website

19 - Fort Wayne Komets
19 - Maine Mariners
17 - South Carolina Stingrays
14 - Kansas City Mavericks
13 - Greenville Swamp Rabbits
12 - Idaho Steelheads
12 - Norfolk Admirals
11 - Indy Fuel
11 - Brampton Beast
11 - Orlando Solar Bears
11 - Wichita  Thunder
10 - Adirondack Thunder
10 - Tulsa Oilers
10 - Manchester Monarchs
9 - Atlanta Gladiators
9 - Worcester Railers
9 - Reading Royals
9 - Rapid City Rush
8 - Utah Grizzlies
8 - Wheeling  Nailers
8 - Allen Americans
8 - Toledo Walleye
7 - Florida Everblades
6 - Jacksonville Icemen
5 - Kalamazoo Wings
4 - Cincinnati Cyclones
3 - Newfoundland Growlers 

- If you add up all of the numbers there have been about 270 players announced thus far around the ECHL. When the season starts the total players on ECHL rosters will be over 800. There will be a lot of announcements over the next few weeks.

- Matt Harding from Team Sin Bin recently interviewed ECHL Commissioner-elect Ryan Crelin about a wide range of topics including his background, the three pillars of the ECHL, expansion, ticket prices, stability of markets, losing star players to Europe, length of season, playoff format, affiliations and much more. The interview runs 35 minutes but covers a  lot of ground and is well worth a listen:

- Garrett Clarke recently posted the second installment of his blog and as he promised it is open and honest. This installment is about his early amateur days. Clarke has signed to play in Romania for the upcoming season.

DID YOU KNOW: I often talk about what I think is an underappreciated statistic and that is players that play in every game during the season. That usually means playing in all 72 games on their team's schedule. However, because of the timing of trades a player can play in more than 72 games in a season. In 2017-18 there were 17 players in the ECHL that played in 72 games. However, one player appeared in 74 games to lead the league. That player was Tanner Eberle, who played in 11 games for Allen before being traded to Jacksonville where he played in 63 games. Tanner has signed with the Sheffield Steelers (England) for the 2018-19 season.  


  1. Thanks for the updates.
    I listened to the podcast with the incoming commissioner.
    1. He made a couple of comments about family affordability and ticket prices. I believe that for the most part, tickets are reasonable - it is the cost of food/snacks that makes the outing much less affordable for the fans.
    2. Expansion west of the Mississippi. He didn't seem to be too enthusiastic about expanding west of the Mississippi. In my opinion, there are several opportunities to support hockey out west. Oklahoma City, Ft. Worth, Omaha, Lincoln and a stretch would be Houston. Also, in the north in Wisconsin & Minnesota.
    If the league doesn't do something to build the west they will lose teams due to travel costs. An additional thought on that is that no one wants to see teams play each other 15 to 20 times a year.

    1. J Magargle, thanks for the comments on the interview with Ryan Crelin. I think expansion will be an area of emphasis once he takes over and you name some good options. It is always a slow process to find the right facility and ownership group. The ECHL business model is a tough sell if you plan on not losing money. I hear you on playing the same teams so many times. Allen plays Wichita 14 times and Tulsa 13 this season.