PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL announced that Game 5 of the Kelly Cup Finals will be broadcast live by XM Satellite Radio, the nation’s leading satellite radio service, on HOME ICE XM 204 at 7 p.m. ET on Thursday.
In addition to its coverage of the Kelly Cup Finals, XM Radio has carried the ECHL All-Star Game live each of the past two years and regularly features the Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League on “Hockey This Morning” with Scott Laughlin heard each weekday morning on HOME ICE XM 204.
In 2007-08, XM Radio becomes the exclusive satellite radio network of the NHL. In addition to live play-by-play coverage of more than 1,000 games from every team in the NHL, XM has the HOME ICE channel which features original programming that focuses on all aspects of the NHL. XM will also broadcast the NHL All-Star Game, the Stanley Cup Playoffs and the Stanley Cup Finals.
The league officially changed its name to ECHL on May 19, 2003.
ECHL began in 1988-89 with five teams in three states and has grown to be a coast-to-coast league that will have 25 teams playing in 17 states and British Columbia in 2007-08, including the Mississippi (Biloxi) Sea Wolves, who return after missing two seasons in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Opening Day for the 20th Anniversary Season will be Oct. 18 when the Johnstown Chiefs host the Wheeling Nailers at Cambria County War Memorial. The game is a rematch of Game 7 from the first-ever ECHL Finals played in front of a standing-room-only crowd at Cambria County War Memorial. The two teams will wear throwback jerseys for the Opening Day game that begins at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast worldwide on B2 Networks, the “Official Broadband Broadcast Provider of the ECHL”. The remaining teams will open their seasons the weekend of Oct. 19-21.
The ECHL has affiliations with 24 of the 27 teams in the American Hockey League in 2006-07 and for the past 17 years there has been an ECHL player on the Calder Cup champion.
In each of the last two seasons there have been more than 225 players who have played in both the ECHL and the AHL and there were over 800 call-ups involving more than 500 players.
In the last five seasons the ECHL has had more call-ups to the AHL than all other professional leagues combined with over 2,000 call-ups involving more than 1,000 players since 2002-03.
Further information on the ECHL is available from its website at ECHL.com.