ALLEN, Texas – Today is the “official” start of training camp which means the majority of players have arrived, been tested, and had their physicals. While a few more players will arrive over the next few days to bring the total in camp to the high 20’s the vast majority of the players are in Allen. From what I have heard from coach Steve Martinson, a lot of practice time this week will be devoted to scrimmages, which is the best way for him to assess what he has. Martinson always says what you have done in the past gets you to training camp but once you arrive the slate is clean and everyone is competing for roster spots. Needless to say, with so few jobs available in the ECHL and so many players looking for jobs, this training camp will be very competitive.
– I received a lot of questions after the ECHL transactions came out yesterday showing Olivier Archambault had been suspended by the Americans. This is a move Martinson made because Archambault is not coming to Allen until sometime later. He is not leaving the team, he is not signing elsewhere, there is nothing more than he is reporting later.
– The only change to the roster since yesterday is the announcement about Archambault being suspended. Another player (AHL contracted) was supposed to arrive yesterday along with a tryout player. Both players should be announced today.
Here is the current roster which includes two goalies, six defensemen, and 13 forwards. There are 11 players on the roster that played in Allen last season and 16 of the 21 have played for Allen at some point in their career.
#31 C.J. Motte
#39 Chris Nell
#4 Turner Ottenbreit
#14 Les Lancaster
#20 Ben Carroll
#23 Cole Fraser
#25 Nolan Kneen
#43 Matt Register
#9 Braylon Shmyr
#10 Corey Durocher
#15 Corey Mackin
#17 Jared Van Wormer
#18 Colton Heffley
#19 Alex Lavoie
#21 Jared Bethune
#22 Tyler Sheehy
#26 Spencer Asuchak
#27 Zane Franklin
#40 Josh Lammon
#47 Patrick Watling
#71 Dyson Stevenson
Other News and Notes
– There was no announcement yesterday about the five teams (Cincinnati, Fort Wayne, Idaho, Kalamazoo, Toledo) that supposedly had until November 30 to declare if they were going to play this season. Justin Cohn, a reporter for The Journal Gazette in Fort Wayne reported the teams have been given more time to decide if they will opt-in or out but how much time is unknown. No official word from any of the teams or the league office came out overnight.
– The city of Trois-Rivieres, Quebec and a group pursuing an ECHL franchise, Deacon Sports and Entertainment, have agreed on a five-year lease with two five-year options (could be 15 years in total). The group will still have to apply for membership to the ECHL but it is assumed this will be approved and the team will start play in the 2021-22 season.
– Here is a story from The Hockey News about some of the struggles COVID is causing in the hockey world in Canada. The QMJHL (Quebec Major Junior Hockey League) has just shut down 19 days early for their Christmas break, canceling/postponing 64 games that were to be played between December 1-19. On the other side of Canada in Calgary, 18 members of the Mount Royal University men’s hockey team tested positive for COVID and the program was shutdown until at least early January. By the way, Spencer Asuchak attended Mount Royal in 2012-13. https://www.si.com/hockey/news/qmjhl-shuts-down-canadian-university-team-has-18-cases
– Here is a video worth watching that Allen President Mike Waddell moderated with the front office leaders from Wichita, Kansas City, and Rapid City/Greenville. They share how their teams are dealing with the issues around COVID-19. What struck me when watching this is how different the occupancy restrictions are around the league. There are states/counties where no fans are allowed or very few fans allowed like Kansas, Michigan, Indiana (Fort Wayne) and Idaho, to states like Texas at 50% occupancy, to states like Florida and South Dakota that allow for 100% occupancy. With so many different occupancy restrictions and not knowing how they may change one way or another going forward, you can see why it is hard for teams to plan and make decisions.
Did You Know?
This will be Matt Register‘s ninth season in the ECHL even though he played just three ECHL games last season and in his first ECHL season (2012-13) he played just 17 games. In the last nine seasons (since 2012-13) Matt has played in 406 ECHL games and has been the most dominant offensive defenseman in the league. Here are just a few of the stats that prove his ECHL Hall of Fame credentials.
– His 86 goals since 2012-13 are 15 more than any other player
– His 236 assists since 2012-13 are 52 more than any other player
– His 322 points since 2012-13 are 67 more than any other player
– His 65 points in 2017-18 is #1 among defensemen in the last 15 years
– His 64 points in 2016-17 is #2 among defensemen in the last 15 years
– He is a three-time ECHL Defenseman of the Year (2018, 2017, 2014)
– He is a three-time Kelly Cup winner (2018, 2017, 2016)
For all things Allen Americans, follow Barry Janssen on Twitter @AllenAmericans1. For the latest stats and trends in the ECHL, follow @ECHLStats. And for the latest news on your favorite AHL & ECHL team, “Like” The Sin Bin on Facebook!