AHL League Update – Spring 2019
By Tom Bourdon,
Head Athletic Trainer, Cleveland Monsters
PHATS AHL Executive Committee President
As the 83rd American Hockey League regular season nears its conclusion we would like to highlight several notable events that have taken course over the past few months.
The 2019 Lexus AHL All-Star Classic, presented by MGM Springfield, took place from January 27th ? January 28th in Springfield, Massachusetts; home of the Springfield Thunderbirds.
- On Sunday January 27th the Western Conference prevailed over the East in the AHL All-Star Skills Competition by a score of 17-14.
- On Monday January 28th the 2019 AHL All-Star Challenge ended in a tie and was concluded in a shoot-out with the North Division topping the Atlantic Division 1-0.
- Drake Batherson of the Belleville Senators was named Most Valuable Player.
- Shawn Thornton and Rob Murray served as honorary captains.
Prior to the 2019 AHL All-Star Challenge the league announced its induction of John Anderson, Don Cherry, Murray Eaves, and Brad Smyth as the AHL Hall of Fame Class of 2019.
This past September, American Hockey League President and CEO David Andrews announced that the Ontario Reign have been selected as hosts of the 2020 AHL All-Star Classic. The 2020 AHL All-Star Classic will be held at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, Calif., on January 26-27, 2020.
As always we wish to congratulate all of our PHATS & SPHEM membership for milestones achieved each year, however this season specifically, the PHATS AHL membership would like to take the opportunity to extend congratulations to Kent Wiesbeck, current Assistant Athletic Trainer and longtime Head Athletic Trainer (85?-11?) of the Rochester Americans, on reaching the 2,500 games served milestone. Kent?s 2,500th game occurred on March 10th 2019 when the Amerks? hosted the Binghamton Devils. Rochester was victorious in a 6-1 final. Among other organizational awards, Kent was presented with a specially engraved wine box as a token of respect and appreciation for both his dedication and commitment to the game of hockey, and the profession of athletic training. Again, congratulations Kent!
The 2018-2019 season welcomed its 31st AHL franchise to the pacific division of the western conference as the long time ECHL franchise Colorado Eagles were inaugurated into the AHL as the top affiliate to the Colorado Avalanche. Coinciding with this addition the San Antonio Rampage subsequently joined ranks with the St. Louis Blues as their top organizational affiliate.
We extend congratulations and wish those organizations who succeed in a 2019 Calder Cup Playoff berth the best of luck and we look forward to seeing all 31 organizations represented at our annual meeting in Austin this June.