ECHL Reschedules Everblades Opening Weekend Because Of Hurricane Wilma

PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL announced on Wednesday that because of Hurricane Wilma it has rescheduled the games between the Las Vegas Wranglers and the Florida Everblades scheduled for Friday and Saturday at Germain Arena in Estero, Florida.

The two teams will now meet on Friday, October 28 and Saturday, October 29.

The Everblades home game against South Carolina scheduled for Friday, October 28 will be moved to Tuesday, November 8.

The Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League, the ECHL will drop the puck for its 18th season this weekend with nine games on Friday, 11 games on Saturday and three games on Sunday.

Welcoming new teams in Phoenix, Arizona; Stockton, California and West Valley City, Utah, the league will play 900 games, beginning October 21 and ending April 8, with 25 teams in 14 states and one Canadian province, British Columbia.

The ECHL originally released its playing schedule in June, but was forced to make two revisions in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, which made it impossible for the Mississippi Sea Wolves to play, and Hurricane Rita, which forced the Texas Wildcatters to suspend operations for 2005-06. The Sea Wolves have already begun preparations for their 10th anniversary season in 2006-07, including reopening an office in Biloxi, while the Wildcatters have announced that they will return to the ice at Ford Arena next year.

The ECHL has affiliations with 25 of the 30 teams in the National Hockey League and there is one head coach (Peter Laviolette), 12 assistant coaches, 12 referees and five linesmen working in the NHL in 2005-06 who have ECHL experience. There have been 263 players who have gone on to play in the NHL after playing in the ECHL. The ECHL has affiliations with 21 of the 27 teams in the American Hockey League and for the past 16 years there has been an ECHL player on the Calder Cup Champion.