PRINCETON, N.J. – The Stanley Cup Tour of the ECHL visits the Utah Grizzlies on Thanksgiving, the Las Vegas Wranglers on Friday, the Phoenix RoadRunners on Saturday and the Long Beach Ice Dogs on Sunday.
The National Hockey League and the Hockey Hall of Fame are touring the Stanley Cup to 20 teams in the ECHL from Oct. 26 to Dec. 17 to help raise awareness and money for hurricane relief efforts. The Tour has already visited Johnstown, Wheeling, Toledo, Dayton, Trenton, Reading and Pensacola.
Mississippi and Texas of the ECHL were both unable to play in 2005-06 as a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the Florida Everblades had to postpone their season opener for a week because of Hurricane Wilma.
Every ECHL team was given the opportunity to host the Stanley Cup Tour and only three teams who submitted requests are not included in the schedule. The NHL continues to work on visits to San Diego and Stockton in conjunction with the Stanley Cup’s annual visit to the ECHL All-Star Game, being hosted by the Fresno Falcons on January 25 at Save Mart Center.
Proceeds benefit charities assisting in hurricane relief efforts including, but not limited to, the American Red Cross, The Salvation Army and the United Way. The Tour is another addition to the National Hockey League’s charitable efforts which have included a joint donation with the NHL Players’ Association of $1 million to the Red Cross for Hurricane Katrina relief.
The ECHL has affiliations with 25 of the 30 teams in the NHL and there is one head coach (Peter Laviolette), 12 assistant coaches, 13 referees and five linesmen working in the NHL in 2005-06 who have ECHL experience. There have been 277 players who have played in the NHL after playing in the ECHL.
Remaining Stops On Stanley Cup Tour of ECHL Cities
Utah (West Valley City) Grizzlies
Las Vegas Wranglers – Affiliate of the Calgary Flames
Long Beach (California) Ice Dogs – Affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens
Bakersfield (California) Condors
Victoria (British Columbia) Salmon Kings
Idaho (Boise) Steelheads – Affiliate of the Dallas Stars
Columbia (South Carolina) Inferno – Affiliate of the Vancouver Canucks
South Carolina (North Charleston) Stingrays – Affiliate of the Washington Capitals
Gwinnett (Georgia) Gladiators – Affiliate of the Atlanta Thrashers
Augusta (Georgia) Lynx
Charlotte (North Carolina) Checkers – Affiliate of the New York Rangers
Greenville (South Carolina) Grrrowl – Affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks and Edmonton Oilers