PRINCETON, N.J. – Back-to-back sellout crowds in Alaska, a sellout crowd in Reading, the third crowd of more than 10,000 in San Diego and the largest crowd of the season in Peoria helped the ECHL surpass the three million mark in attendance for the 12th consecutive season.
Through games of Sunday, the league has drawn 3,099,004 and is averaging 3,953 per game, up more than three percent from last season and almost nine percent from 2002-03. The league crossed the three million mark in 765 games, the fastest it has reached three million since 2001-02 when it accomplished it in 761 games.
Alaska had its fifth and sixth sellouts of the year for its first-place showdown with Long Beach, drawing 6,251 on Saturday and 6,313 on Sunday. The Aces, who rank second in the league with six sellouts and third in total attendance with 153,071, are averaging 4,638 per game, up from 4,340 in 2003-04.
Peoria drew its largest crowd of the season with 7,815 on Saturday while San Diego had its third-largest crowd of the year with 10,804 on Saturday.
The ECHL has had 35 sellouts in 2004-05 led by Victoria which has had eight sellout crowds in 2,513-seat Bear Mountain Arena, the Salmon Kings temporary home. Florida has four sellouts while Idaho has three sellouts and Augusta, Gwinnett, Reading and Toledo each have two sellouts. ECHL teams with one sellout are Columbia, Las Vegas, Long Beach, Louisiana, Trenton and Wheeling.
Gwinnett leads the ECHL in average attendance with 6,319 per game, an increase of more than 25 percent from 2003-04, and is second in total attendance with 170,621. Florida leads the league in total attendance (181,369) and ranks second in average attendance (6,045) while San Diego is fourth in total attendance (151,501) and third in average attendance (5,611), up more than 11 percent from 2003-04. Reading is fourth in average attendance at 5,528 while Bakersfield is fifth with 5,204 per game, up more than 15 percent from last season. Charlotte’s attendance is up more than 10 percent at 5,002.