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Las Vegas Will Have AHL Affiliate By Christmas, Share ECHL Team

Now that Murray Craven is on the staff for real we are starting to get a little more clarity on how the minor league system will look for the Las Vegas franchise.

The AHL affiliate will be announced relatively soon.

We’ll know by Christmas where we are going to be. It’s a process, it’s a little bit tricky. The AHL is such a good league now, probably the second best league in the world. It’s such a big part of what teams are now. -Murray Craven

Where? That’s still yet to be seen. The leading candidates are still probably Salt Lake City, Reno, and Fresno.

As for ECHL, Vegas won’t have a full affiliate straight out of the gate.

No, (we won’t have enough players to field a team) not off the bat. That’s why we’ll be in a partnership. -Craven

The team is still in preliminary talks as to where/with whom exactly they will share that team and don’t have an exact timeline on when that process may be completed. Craven did rule out Vancouver, which was a rumored possibility. He also ruled out Las Vegas as a potential minor league city, which would have been a terrible idea.

The good news, Las Vegas will have a fully functional farm system from the moment they are allowed to start selecting players. The bad news, I feel like an 8-year-old again being told I have to wait until Christmas to get what I want.

 

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16 Comments

  1. RJ

    Reno, Fresno, and SLC would all be awesome spots for a AHL affiliate. I was worried our AHL team would wind up being in Worcester, Mass or Utica, NY or something similar. I’m looking forward to seeing a game in one of those cities next season as well.

  2. just want to point out that NHL teams can no longer officially share an ECHL affiliate. The Panthers used to share Cincinnati with Nashville but last year had to use Manchester to give some their prospects that weren’t ready for AHL Portland some ECHL playing time. That will probably be the case for Vegas next year. They will have their own AHL team, and then have to find an ECHL club that’s nearby to it that can use a few extra bodies to fill the roster.

  3. Steven

    I really hope its Reno. Will do great things for hockey in the state and build and instant Nevada rooting interest for the team

    • Without knowing much about the demographics or the rink situation in Reno, I tend to agree with you Steven. Having the farm team that close by is a huge plus and like you said, would help build hockey interest in the state. The Coyotes are trying the same concept by putting their AHL team in Tucson this season. Will be interesting to see how that pans out.

  4. Rob

    Reno Regiment
    SLC Sentinels
    Fresno Force

  5. gotta bring back the Golden Eagles name if it’s Salt Lake City

  6. Jeff

    Sacramento would be a good choice too. Would fit in with other Western AHL teams, and its close to Vegas. Reno would be good for an ECHL (hate that name, BTW) team.

  7. No matter what the geographic ends of being it is obviously a great thing for both the state and the sport. Cannot wait to take my young kids.

  8. Gary Dunn

    Gary

    Too bad St .John`s Newfoundland Canada is so far away , its the home of the Icecaps the AHL team for Montreal.They will be leaving after this season leaving St .John`s with no team.

  9. Gary Dunn

    Too bad St .John`s Newfoundland Canada is so far away , its the home of the Icecaps the AHL team for Montreal.They will be leaving after this season leaving St .John`s with no team.

  10. CW Thompson

    Fresno all the way! After 63years of hockey tradition fans are getting excited to bring the sport back to Fresno.Vegas is the perfect fit considering the short airline flight and two existing hockey arenas and the practice facility

  11. Ryan

    Not having an ECHL affiliate isn’t a big deal. Vegas will have a hard enough time signing enough players to fill an AHL roster. My bet is that half the team will be signed directly to the AHL team as free agents rather than being Vegas signees. The ECHL is improving but lets be serious, very few non-goaltenders ever make a significant splash in the NHL.

  12. cody

    Reno Silver Knights 😉

  13. Who knows if Las Vegas will ever get an NFL team but no matter what the addition of an AHL team will add significant opportunity to see great sports. I welcome them to Sin City. Hockey is the best sporting event to se live period anyway.

  14. We’re excited to be getting ur Vegas team started. Also believe a Reno team in ECHL would work out. NHL and AHL must get Vancouver a western “A” team first and foremost. Wish ECHL would add another western and eastern team for 17-18. southeast a little too crowded not being near any NHL region. Also makes no real accountability for Lightning and Panthers not to be affiliated with Sunshine teams?!

  15. We’re excited to be getting our Vegas team started. Also believe Reno in ECHL would work out. NHL and AHL must get Vancouver a western “A” team first and foremost. Wish ECHL would add another western and eastern team for 17-18. southeast a little too crowded not being near any NHL region. Also makes no real accountability for Lightning and Panthers not to be affiliated with Sunshine teams?!

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