A few things...actually a lot of things
1. Does this list account for players that used the empire to advance to other leagues, like Canadian Juniors, NAHL, AJHL, Prep School, even NTDP and USHL? Didn't that Vatrano kid that you just ripped apart play 2 years in the empire before going to play for the top program in the country, NTDP? And there are 3 players on this year’s u18 NTDP team alone who have experience playing in the Empire or it's "brother league" the Met.
2. Aren't most of the kids in the Empire and even the Met from the area that their team is located and are still in high school?
3. What are the financial differences from playing in the Empire or Met compared to midget leagues such as T1EHL and HPHL?
4. What is wrong with a local kid playing in the Empire until he graduates high school and then goes to college?
5. What's wrong with a kid who is out of high school who wants to play a year of juniors away from home and his skill set is that caliber of the Empire? Yes it costs money just like any other level of play besides the NAHL or USHL but it is not like it is being stolen from him.
You seem to put this league and the other east coast leagues on blast but it seems like it is a perfect league for most kids who are in it.
Also, little snippet from you on your last article.
"I took my own successes (and failures) from the Anchorage (now Alaska) Aces,Pacific Hockey League, Alaska Arctic Ice, Alaska Division of the Western States Hockey League, Peninsula Hellfighters, Florida Gulls, Southern Elite Hockey League, Texarkana Bandits, and even the Gulf Coast Hockey League and applied it as content for this site. "
Aside from the Alaska Aces, which I doubt if you made them the ECHL powerhouse they are today, aren't all of those teams and leagues defunct. And none of those teams or leagues are in New England, so how would you know the type of hockey environment and mentality that exists there. And before you say that you have numerous contacts there to back you up, would you mind naming them? I am sure everyone the east coast who reads this site is curious as to who they are.
"Somebody is going to split New England. At this point I think that Mark Frankenfeld and the NAHL have the inside edge. If what happened in Johnstown on Saturday is any indication, the NAHL brand can sufficiently replace low-level minor-professional hockey in many Atlantic markets. That includes New England. "
Is that a threat to the EJHL, Empire, AJHL, and Met? This is pay to play hockey! Go to an EJHL or empire game and see how little, if any, fans they get besides friends and parents. How would moving a NAHL team to place that gets no fans be financially stable, and how would that effect the EJHL in anyway besides taking 3-5 guys away from the league per year? Your east coast savior NAHL Johnstown team has a grand total of 5 kids from the east coast, 3 of which are from PA. So much for taking the EJHL's players…
luke kirwan plays for islanders / last year syracuse
cassie garrison plays for philly / last year syracuse
This list clearly is to see just how many Empire vets, from last season, transitioned to the EJ THIS season.
For all that money that it costs to be associated with the EJ teams, I'd certainly expect to see a lot more movement from the Empire to EJ.
"In reality, post-graduate prospects would be better off enrolling in the college that best meets the needs for their individual career ambitions. If that college has a ACHA program, NCAA Div. III program, or even just a bunch of guys getting together to play men's hockey, the prospect would be able to continue playing somewhere without burning up additional financial resources."
. I think this former post-graduate Empire player would disagree.
Are you sure that he was a post-grad for that full season in the Empire?
The next year he split time in EJ...and the third year he was full time EJ. He is a 92?
You certainly seem quick to look over the points I made, probably because you have no good answer for it. Like the comment I posted on the last article, you ignore the questions I asked.
If this list is just from players transitioning to the EJ from the Empire this season, that is actually a lot of players. You are not even considering vets in the EJ who played in the empire.
Each team in the EJHL can have up to 25 kids on it. That is not a lot of spots if you consider returning players, players recruited out of midgets, prep schools, and other tier III leagues, players from the NAHL who feel the EJHL is better suited for them, players incoming from trades, and free agents who have played in the ejhl.
There are 26 kids on this list including the 2 paul mentioned. Did you know that USHL only has 25 players listed as playing in the NAHL last season? Pretty similar numbers...
Exactly how much of the tuition charged by empire teams goes to supporting only the EJHL team? Usually the fees go to help support the organization as whole, not just the EJHL team. The EJHL team fees are also used for this.
How about you answer the questions from my last comment, or are you just going to ignore the hard questions people ask you?
MacDonald split time? I see 6 games with the EJ club and 39 with the Empire club, which would indicate to me that he was clearly an Empire player that was called up for some games at some point during the season. He was a post grad.
If this player had followed the advice in this article, his family would likely be out a nice chunk of change paying for college tuition, rather than having a full athletic scholarship to one of the strongest hockey programs in the country. 24,000 (a years tuition of college) to play Junior for 2 years out of college doesn't sound so bad now.
Should say "3" years and not "2" as 8,000 as yearly tuition has typically been thrown around as an estimate that players play in this league.
Hard questions? Believe it or not, I don't read every comment made on this site and I am suppose to be...
Like a lot of EJ fans and supporters, you would prefer to come after the sources and me instead of simply addressing the issue.
So here it goes...do you really believe that every EJHL player is paying the full fee or really working for the team/rink the amount of hours necessary to cover those fees?
If your answer is yes...than that is all we need to know about your position.
About this particular article... I like the Empire and believe it serves a developmental purpose. With that said, I don't like to see players taken advantage of or promised opportunities that never materialize.
I've talked to way too many Empire and EJ players that feel they have been suckered by the system. "Yea, we have you slotted for the EJ team." Than once the first payment is made, the player finds himself on the Empire roster.
In my world, that's called a Bait and Switch and the players can't do much about it. We were able to help a few players get refunds last year and they elected to go to other teams. For every one that I hear about, I know there are 20 or more others.
So, why do teams do this? That's an easy answer...money.
If tuition is $7,000 a year and a family only pays $3,000 and refuses to pay the balance, isn't that basically the same as a team giving a reduced fee to a player, only difference is who is determining what will be paid.
OK, 1st catch me up guys...I know The EJ, EJ "South" and Atlantic (+ more?) are fine Leagues...I know they have a "thing" out there and a "pipeline" connected with eastern schools...but how or why is another USA Hockey Tier III Jr. A league (Empire) a "feeder" to another Tier III league?...or is that just one of those "things" out there.....and as far as $ goes, when it comes to "pay to play" leagues, its the same all over, from mites to $12000 a year AAA Midg. teams to $8000 a year Tier III Jr. teams...Example and for instance: we always paid back then, period...and also have been to houses that you could fit my house in the garage of the parents that didn't pay or paid partial...it is what it is so use: SERENITY NOW!, SERENITY NOW!...Just check off: Player needs or wants to leave home or stay, good Coach, and good organization top to bottom (should be if good Coach)
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