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USA Hockey Tier III Expansion, Daily Report Junior Hockey News

Published: Friday, 2 May 2014  
By: Stephen Heisler,


USA Hockey has approved the expansion for the North American 3 Hockey League and the formation of the five-team Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League.

The NA3HL announced new teams for Nashville and Decatur, Alabama along with North Richfield Hills, Texas where the Texas Brahmas will move from the Western States Hockey League to the NA3HL.

The Aspen Leafs, Colorado Rampage, Colorado Thunderbirds, Pikes Peak Miners and Grand Junction Coyotes are the founding members of the new RMJHL.

In the battle of the West, USA Hockey has decided to go head-to-head with AAU's most powerful group, the Western States Hockey League. I'm not sure that Colorado was the best battleground for USA Hockey but we have to appreciate the effort. The group of operators is among the best organized youth programs in the region.

A lot of folks are asking the same question; where are the players coming from?

Unlike the bureaucracy that is USA Hockey, AAU can make a quick adjustment to offset any player procurement issues. A policy change that completely eliminates the import player language would be a swift and bold first step.



Daily Report teams were asked this question. Do you utilize an athletic training staff and how do you manage player injuries?

Detroit Fighting Irish, Midwest Junior Hockey League -  "We utilize a training staff whom are specifically dedicated to injury prevention. Our trainer is NCAA experienced and has been part of some of the top university programs in the country for nearly two decades. She is currently on staff with the University of Michigan," Daniel Vasquez replied. "The trainer is the final word on all player injuries and is consulted on all of our training processes. The real value has been the ability of our players when requiring rehab or the delicacy of concussion issues that we have a professional backed by a staff of professionals to make the right decisions concerning our players' health and safety."

Soo Firehawks, Midwest Junior Hockey League - "We have one of the best guys in the league. He's on par with the best in the country after seeing what the top teams had with them at nationals. Phill Woolcocks is our all-around guy. He's a nutritionist helping the guys with good eating and proper supplements," Matt Parker said. "He's on his way to being a pro trainer and body builder and to boot he's and firefighter/EMT. He's always on the bench for us and made the trip to Vegas with us as well. He's there every day we are putting in his time he also has his own trainers' room which helps a lot. Phil does a great job keeping our guys healthy on and off the ice and when it comes to injuries he is right there whether it be us or the away team. He's an asset and I think he helps our program and keeps us on par with some of the best jr teams in the country. Not many teams are able to have a guy like Phil, he's more a part of the team then just a trainer."

Arizona Redhawks, Western States Hockey League - "We have a training staff that works with our boys four nights a week," Robert Powell answered. "The medical staff is on call 24/7 and we share our doctor with the Coyotes of the NHL, along with a physiotherapist who works will all our injuries."

Cheyenne Stampede, Western States Hockey League -  "It is so important to have a training team in place for injury prevention.  The players do not take care of their bodies as well as they should for numerous reasons," Eric Ballard answered. "With a training staff you can at least try to heal, prevent and strengthen those athletic injuries, I try to use a sport specific training personnel at every team I am involved with."

Southern Oregon Spartans, Western States Hockey League - "I believe in the game today injuries are becoming more and more common.  It is critical at all levels of the game a qualified person needs to be in attendance.  I have been fortunate to have quality qualified training staffs for teams I have been associated," David Cole explained. "Training staffs can be integral parts of team success handling injuries and other issues to help players on a daily basis.  In my opinion the direction and opinion of a qualified training staff and team doctors are to be respected and decisions should be made accordingly.  Player safety in today's game is paramount."

Valencia Flyers, Western States Hockey League - "We have a staff strength and conditioning coach as well as an athletic trainer on staff," Scott Allegrini replied. "We have an affiliation with our local hospital as well that sends a representative each Wednesday for injury evaluation. He will treat minor injuries on site and when necessary refer the players for follow up at their clinic/rehab facility."

East Coast Eagles, United States Premier Hockey League - "Yes, we are using OSNC(Orthopedic Specialists of North Carolina)," Jocelyn Langlois said. "They come to every home games and twice weekly for practices."

Daily Report - Want to have your team added to this Daily Report? Contact me directly at or call 281-973-2050.



Michigan Warriors at Fairbanks Ice Dogs, Robertson Cup Semi-Finals - It really all comes to this; can the Ice Dogs freeze Michigan Warriors goaltender Trevor Gorsuch? If they can, they win...if not they lose.

My Pick- Michigan


Austin Bruins at Topeka RoadRunners, Robertson Cup Semi-Finals - Hey Scott Langer, no pressure. The last time the only head coach in RoadRunners' history was this close to a Robertson Cup... let's just pass the throat lozenges.

My Pick- Austin



This is the 10th Annual Junior Hockey Placement Showcase (JPS).  JPS is among the oldest running hockey showcases in the Western United States. Who should attend:  JPS is a great opportunity to get noticed for your skills and to further your career in hockey. In attendance will be 50-60 Hockey Coaches/General Managers representing Jr. A (US and Canada), Prep Schools, Midget AA/AAA and Colleges (Division I and Division III). The exposure from this showcase gives the participants a great experience along with excellent opportunities to be seen by numerous hockey coaches and scouts. For more info visit



The Prospects List has the potential to reshape the way players are initially identified and recruited. The Video Evaluation System module gives junior and college teams a comprehensive system that provides a real gauge of where each prospects is today, where he's come from, and what his potential can be. Learn more about the system by visiting JuniorHockey.Com/ProspectsList



Traffic on jumped to 3.3M+ in 2013 and now it's time for the site to take things to an entirely new level. We are looking for regional writer to cover the Canadian Junior Hockey League, United States Hockey League, major junior and women's level of play. Interested? Give me a call at 281-973-2050.


Stephen Heisler has spent a lifetime in the game of hockey. Now semi-retired, he splits time with family in Texas and at their beach property in Mexico.

Author: Stephen Heisler from
Stephen Heisler has spent a lifetime in the game of hockey. Stephen is also working with individual teams, coaches, and players as a director with the Heisler Group. Stephen, his wife Deysi, and four children reside in Orlando, Florida.

* Disclaimer: This site may contain advice, opinions and statements from various authors and information providers. Views expressed in this article reflect the personal opinion of the author, Stephen Heisler, and not necessarily the views of does not represent or endorse the accuracy or reliability of any advice, opinion, statement or other info provided in the article, or from any other member of this site.
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