Dallas Stars Extend Affiliation With Idaho

Photo via Idaho Steelheads. All rights reserved. 

The Dallas Stars announced this morning that they have inked another one-year affiliation extension with the Idaho Steelheads as their go-to ECHL franchise. Having the same ECHL affiliate for what will be eleven straight seasons is quite the accomplishment, and it is also a testimony to the sturdy tendencies of front office and coaching staff in the Idaho pipeline. The extension comes as it does in typical Stars form (mid-summer, unassuming), but it also is worth watching if you are from the Oklahoma City area.

You will recall that confirmed rumors bubbled to the surface months ago about Oklahoma City nabbing an ECHL slot for the 16-17 season. Those confirmed reports came in two forms – a revival of the OKC Blazers owned by a local group, and another via the Dallas Stars, whom would be keen on an ECHL team north of the Red River.

Today’s announcement doesn’t confirm nor deny the potential for a Stars inking a deal with the city of OKC, but it sure is worth watching a year from now.

In the end my selfish tendencies have me “ALL IN” on a potential Stars affiliate residing five minutes from my front door. As a life-long Stars fan I would be delighted to see a marriage between my NHL team and my city. Chances are there are many more like me. Fingers (and toes) crossed.

via Dallas Morning News

The Dallas Stars announced today that the club will renew its affiliation with the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads for the 2015-16 season.

The Steelheads have served as Dallas’ ECHL affiliate since the 2005-06 season and during the 2003-04 campaign. Idaho has reached the Kelly Cup Finals three times as an affiliate of the Dallas Stars, winning the Kelly Cup twice (2004 and 2007). The Steelheads were crowned Pacific Division champions during the 2014-15 regular season, posting a record of 48-18-2-4.

“We are extremely pleased to renew our affiliation with the Steelheads,” said Director of Hockey Operations and Texas Stars General Manager Scott White. “Head Coach Brad Ralph has done a tremendous job in Idaho, as his success in developing young players has led to the winning culture we strive to uphold at all levels of the organization. We look forward to our continued partnership with the Steelheads.”

The Texas Stars will continue to operate as Dallas’ top development affiliate in the American Hockey League.

ECHL Teams release their Protected Lists

ECHL teams released their Protected Lists yesterday which basically allows teams to “protect” a group of their players (based on the rules stated below) giving teams exclusive negotiating rights through July 1st. The more crucial list is a team’s “Season Ending Roster” (consisting of up to 20 players) which will be released on June 15th and teams can begin to sign players beginning June 16th. A team’s Season Ending Roster establishes the core of players for each team’s Qualifying Offers given to 8 of their players to be submitted by June 30th, and released publicly on July 1st.

You will notice that some teams protected a few of their players who have already signed overseas, however that just allows a team to negotiate with the player should their plans change.

Any ECHL Players who were assigned to an ECHL team by the National Hockey League or American Hockey League affiliate or team will not appear on the Protected lists since they cannot be protected.

Any in-season Future Consideration trades must be completed by June 13th. If your team owes a team a future consideration or another team owes your team a future consideration, those trades must be completed by June 13th.

“The ECHL on Tuesday announced the Protected Lists as submitted by each of its Member teams.

Teams are allowed to protect as many players as they wish provided the players protected meet the guidelines as defined in the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the ECHL and the Professional Hockey Players’ Association which state that teams shall retain the rights to each player that:

1. Signed an SPC in 2014-15 with the Member, and has not been traded or released, OR

2. Signed an SPC in 2014-15, and was recalled to the NHL/AHL or IIHF team, and has not been traded or released, OR

3. Had received a Qualifying Offer last summer for the current Season, DID NOT sign an SPC, and has not been traded or released, OR

4. Has been suspended by the Member or League, and has not been traded or released, OR

5. Signed an SPC on or after the first day of the 2014-15 Regular Season, then subsequently signed an NHL/AHL contract, and has not been traded or released, OR

6. Has executed the ECHL Retirement Form, and has not been traded or released.

Protected lists may exceed 20 players.

The ECHL also announced that teams must complete all Future Consideration trades by 3 p.m. ET on June 13 and that teams must submit their Season-Ending Roster by 3 p.m. ET on June 15.

Season-ending rosters may include up to 20 players and cannot include any players who did not sign an ECHL contract in 2014-15.”

View the ECHL teams Protected Lists. TTF will cover each step of this process through June and July. Stay tuned!

(Apologies for the delay in releasing this since your Tend the Farm crew was busy with our BIG news released yesterday.)

Tend the Farm Kelly Cup Picks: 1st Round Edition

Your trusty Tend the Farm experts are weighing in on the ECHL Kelly Cup playoffs! The Kelly Cup first round has already started and in honor of Mr. Patrick J. Kelly  and his sparkly Cup, the farmhands at TTF have picked the winners using coin flips, drawing straws and pure old guesswork with a bit of heart. Yes, we will fail miserably at times, but oddly enough, Eric and I both agree on all of our picks in this 1st round.

(The Small Tiny Print: TTF and its writers are not responsible for any harm that might come to your bank account if you take our picks to heart. We do, however, believe that the first moon walk took place on a soundstage in Hollywood, and that eating Pop Rocks with soda will cause your head to explode. Thus proving…we are experts!)

Eric’s Picks

| Western Conference: 1st Round (Best of 7):

Allen Americans vs. Tulsa Oilers – Allen

Rapid City Rush vs. Quad City Mallards – Quad City

Idaho Steelheads vs. Utah Grizzlies – Idaho

Ontario Reign vs. Colorado Eagles – Colorado

 

| Eastern Conference: 1st Round (Best of 7):

Toledo Walleye vs. Wheeling Nailers – Toledo

Fort Wayne Komets vs. Kalamazoo Wings – Fort Wayne

Florida Everblades vs. Orlando Solar Bears – Florida

South Carolina Stingrays vs. Reading Royals – South Carolina

 

Patricia’s Picks

| Western Conference: 1st Round (Best of 7):

Allen Americans vs. Tulsa Oilers – Allen

Rapid City Rush vs. Quad City Mallards – Quad City

Idaho Steelheads vs. Utah Grizzlies – Idaho

Ontario Reign vs. Colorado Eagles – Colorado

 

| Eastern Conference: 1st Round (Best of 7):

Toledo Walleye vs. Wheeling Nailers – Toledo

Fort Wayne Komets vs. Kalamazoo Wings – Fort Wayne

Florida Everblades vs. Orlando Solar Bears – Florida

South Carolina Stingrays vs. Reading Royals – South Carolina

ECHL Playoffs Primer: March 31, 2015

As we head into the final couple weeks of the ECHL regular season, each point is extremely critical as we head towards the playoffs and teams are still fighting for their playoff lives. Nine of the available sixteen spots have been secured, here’s where we stand as thirteen teams battle it out for the remaining seven seats to the postseason.