Fleming Achieves Milestone With 200th Everblades Win
PRINCETON, N.J. – Frank Anzalone became only the fourth coach in ECHL history to reach 300 wins when Johnstown opened its 19th season with a win on Saturday, and Gerry Fleming became only the eighth coach in league history to register 200 wins with one team when Florida posted a victory on Saturday.
Anzalone is 300-210-57 and has coached 567 games in the ECHL with Johnstown (2005 to date), Pee Dee (1999-2001), Roanoke (1993-98) and Nashville (1991-92), leading his team to the postseason seven times in nine seasons. He is fourth among league coaches in career wins and career games behind John Brophy (480 wins and 878 games), John Marks (466 wins and 918 games) and Jeff Brubaker (317 wins and 670 games). Anzalone is in his 10th season which ties him for the third with Brubaker behind Brophy and Marks, who each coached 13 seasons in the ECHL.
Fleming recorded his 200th win with the Everblades on Saturday and joins John Brophy (416 wins with Hampton Roads), Jeff Brubaker (257 wins with Greensboro), current Utah coach Jason Christie (217 wins with Peoria), Ron Hansis (219 wins with Erie), John Marks (275 wins with Greenville), Jeff Pyle (269 with Gwinnett/Mobile) and Rick Vaive (201 with South Carolina) as coaches to reach 200 wins with one team.
Fleming is 238-143-53 overall as an ECHL coach, having coached Tallahassee in 2000-01, his first season in the league. In addition to Fleming, 14 coaches have reached 200 wins in their ECHL career including current Johnstown coach Frank Anzalone (300), current Long Beach coach Rick Adduono (259), current Utah coach Jason Christie (254), current Alaska coach Davis Payne (242) and current Gwinnett coach Jeff Pyle (270). Others to have reached the plateau are John Brophy (480), Jeff Brubaker (317), Terry Christiansen (200), Denis Desrosiers (218), current Anaheim Ducks assistant coach Dave Farrish (237), Ron Hansis (226), John Marks (466), Rick Vaive (201) and Warren Young (208).
The league officially changed its name to ECHL on May 19, 2003.
The Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League, the ECHL has affiliations with 25 of the 30 teams in the National Hockey League in 2006-07. There have been 305 former ECHL players who have gone on to play in the NHL after playing in the ECHL, including a record 47 in 2005-06. There have been 159 players who have played in the NHL after the ECHL in the past five seasons.
The ECHL was represented for the sixth consecutive year on the National Hockey League championship team, including Carolina Hurricanes head coach Peter Laviolette, who is the first ECHL coach to win the Stanley Cup.
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. The ECHL has had more players called up to the AHL than all other professional leagues combined each of the past four seasons with 1,646 call ups involving almost 1,000 players.
The ECHL raised its average attendance for the third straight year in 2005-06 drawing 3,934,794 for 900 games which is an average of 4,372 per game, an increase of more than nine percent from 2004-05 and the largest per-game average since 1999-2000. Six teams surpassed 200,000 and nine teams averaged 5,000 per game for the first time since 1999-2000 as the league welcomed 39 sellout crowds and 13 of the 22 returning teams raised their average attendance from a year ago.
The Idaho Steelheads and the City of Boise will host the 15th Annual ECHL All-Star Game presented by Rbk Hockey on Jan. 17 and the 10th Annual ECHL All-Star Skills Competition presented by Rbk Hockey on Jan. 16 at Qwest Arena.
In 2005-06 the ECHL and its member teams contributed more than $2.3 million for charity and relief funds, including those benefiting victims of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, while also making thousands of appearances by players, coaches, team personnel and mascots at schools, hospitals, libraries and charity functions.
Further information on the ECHL is available from its website at ECHL.com.