The ECHL has surpassed one million fans for the 20th season in a row and is averaging 4,206 per game which is up 9.9 percent from the first nine weeks of 2008-09.
The Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League reached the one million mark in 237 games which is the fewest number of games since 206 games in 1999-2000.
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The only minor professional hockey league to increase average attendance each of the last two seasons, the Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League has averaged more than 4,000 fans each of the last five seasons and 17 times in the last 19 years while drawing more than 3 million fans for 16 straight seasons.
Four returning teams are ahead of their average attendance from a year ago led by Cincinnati with 28.4 percent. The Cyclones, who are averaging 3,986 per game, led minor professional hockey with a 36 percent attendance increase from 2006-07 to 2007-08 and ranked second with 23 percent from 2007-08 to 2008-09.
Elmira leads the league with six sellouts and ranks second among returning teams and third overall with a 14.0 percent increase. The Jackals are averaging 3,799 per game which is 100.4 percent of capacity at First Arena. Elmira has had 25 sellouts since joining the ECHL and tied for the league lead in 2008-09 with five sellouts after leading the ECHL the first season in 2007-08 with 14 sellouts.
Drawing more than 15,000 for three games against Stockton, Alaska raised its average to 4,928 per game which is seventh in the league and up 5.3 percent from a year ago.
Stockton leads the league in average attendance with 5,874 per game while Ontario is second with 5,827 per game. Stockton has led the ECHL in attendance each of their first four seasons and is trying to tie the league record of five years set by Florida from 2000-05.
Toledo is third in the league with 5,654 per game which is up more than 43 percent from 2006-07 when the team played its last season in the Toledo Sports Arena.