Summer Blog Entry: June 19-July 9
06/19/2015 10:19 AM - Adrian Denny
The Grizzlies completed the trade that brought Brenden Walker to Utah in March, earlier this week, when the rights to Jacob Johnston were sent to the Gwinnett Gladiators. However, according to Elite Prospects, Johnston has already signed with Edinburgh in England’s EIHL for the upcoming season.
Walker had nine goals and six assists for 15 points in 13 regular season games with Utah after trade and seven points in seven playoff games on three goals and four assists before going down with an injury.
Grizzlies Head Athletic Trainer Mike Plandowski was recognized at the Athletic Trainer and Equipment Manager’s Meetings in San Antonio on Thursday night for working his 1000th professional game on January 23, 2015.
More Weekly Notes On The 2015-2016 Schedule
The Grizzlies first home opponent in 2015-2016 will be the Allen Americans, who beat South Carolina in game seven of the Kelly Cup Finals on Sunday. Utah will host Allen twice over Opening Weekend and twice over Thanksgiving Weekend at Maverik Center.
Idaho will again be Utah’s most frequent road trip. The Grizzlies are scheduled to go to Boise for five trips this season. Last year, the Grizzlies went to Boise eight times total with five regular season trips, one in preseason and two bus rides to Idaho in the playoffs. The only other place the Grizzlies will go more than twice is Colorado, with three trips scheduled to Loveland in 2015-2016.
Utah’s busiest home week will be Saturday, February 13-Saturday, February 20; in which they will play five games over eight days against three opponents in: Idaho, Rapid City and Gwinnett.
Due to ECHL League Meetings in Las Vegas next week and a scheduled vacation, this will be the only Summer Blog between now and July 11.
Between now and then, the Grizzlies will announce 8 qualifying offers for the 2015-2016 season on July 1. Other individual player signings will be announced coming up as well.
Summer Blog Entry: June 12
06/12/2015 2:21 PM - Adrian Denny
2011-2012 Grizzlies defenseman and former Calgary prospect John Negrin is the last remaining Grizzlies player still playing for a championship. He is currently with the Vancouver Canucks AHL affiliate in Utica. The Comets trail Manchester two games to one in the Calder Cup Finals. They lost games one and two in overtime. Negrin got called-up prior to morning skate on the road in Colorado on November 9, 2011. He went to airport, as team went to arena and he was never heard from again; spending the rest of the year in the AHL and being traded to Winnipeg midseason.
Former Grizzlies Head Coach Kevin Colley is an Assistant Coach for the Allen Americans who will host South Carolina in game seven of the Kelly Cup Finals on Sunday. Colley has been working all season with the Americans in Dallas.
With the Kelly Cup Finals going to game seven for the first time since 2009 and a 15-day series; Sunday will mark an end to the ECHL season, which on June 15, 2015 will play its latest date ever.
More weekly notes on the 2015-2016 Schedule:
This is the first year since 2010 that the Grizzlies don’t open with Idaho. A trip to Alaska on November 3 for games November 4, 6 and 7 will be Utah’s earliest ever visit to Anchorage.
Utah will play five three-game road series in the same city after doing it just twice last year, with both three-game series in Alaska. Utah will play three games in Anchorage twice, a three-game series in Rapid City and three games each in Kalamazoo and Toledo.
Summer Blog Entry: June 5
06/05/2015 1:53 PM - Adrian Denny
One of the frequent new opponents the Grizzlies will see next year is the Allen Americans, who are currently in the ECHL’s Kelly Cup Finals. The Americans have expressed over the last few weeks that they’ve long been preparing their roster to join the ECHL and thus we’re ready to step right up and win as they joined the league along with the other Central Division teams right before the season started.
Utah will host the Americans four times and visit Allen twice on two separate trips. By all accounts, it sounds like the Americans play in a great arena, with a strong fan base and it is a good setup for visiting teams. Looking forward to visiting suburban Dallas next year.
The Grizzlies will visit Rapid City next year for the first time as well making two trips to South Dakota for five games. The trip to Rapid City is equal to going to the three California cities the Grizzlies visited last season. Same distance, 10 hours on a sleeper bus, just going NE now instead of W or SW. The Rush will come to Maverik Center on four trips for six games.
Out of the three cities in California, that we will not be visiting in 2015-2016, I’ll miss Bakersfield the most, followed by Ontario and then Stockton. Though the hospitality from the folks in Stockton was always first class and everyone from the hotel staff to the Thunder always went above and beyond. It’s just tough to beat the great restaurants in downtown Bakersfield and the sunny warm weather every day of the year there. Some of the best meals, we’ve had on the road the last several years have been in Bakersfield from steak to Italian to Mexican. It is a very underrated downtown. Ontario has palm trees and every restaurant chain in America, with lots to choose from and some favorite eateries we don’t have in Utah like the Yardhouse.
If you haven’t visited the Grizzlies on the road, it’s five hours to Boise and seven hours to Colorado. Both places offer great fan experiences and nearby lodging and restaurants, so it might be something to plan for 15-16.