The first full season of the West Coast Senior Hockey League featuring local talent will kick off this weekend with all four teams seeing action. There are no paid players and the focus is on promoting each team as a community team.
Question: What’s your expectations for the new league and will be supporting it this winter?
My only recollection is last year and it seemed to be a fantastic turnout. Prices were low, it was a great family event and the stadium was full, so to me it was a good product on the ice and around the rink, so a good experience. I would expect something similar this year and I think we need to keep the prices the same as last year. I think the talent was reasonable so I would expect roughly the same again and I will be going to some of the games.
I think the Royals and the league are finally on the right model in terms of a sustainable model financially. You’re just not getting the fans to support paying players the way you were before and there’s no point of having a roller-coaster of whether or not we’re going to be there or not. I think they have a financial model that works. The idea that you’re having local players who you have grown up with and who you know, I think there’s a lot more public interest in going to see those players play like the Jamie Penneys of the world, than what it is seeing some guys getting on a flight in Long Island who is coming in for a game and then disappearing again.
I’ll definitely be supporting the league. I think it’s going to be an excellent year because last year, at the end of the season, we were selling out in the stands. I think the craving for hockey in Corner Brook is very high, so I think last year was a good base for this season.
I’ll be supporting it 100 per cent and I think it’s going to be a good league. We got our local players playing and we recognize a lot of these guys, so I think it is going to be quite successful.
I like the idea of the new league, not that I don’t like having the really good players coming in from outside. I like the local players because it’s our boys and when we had senior league back in the day, we had all local boys and we filled the stadium. I’m delighted that the hockey is back and I hope it becomes a nice success.
It’s pretty cool to see it back. I remember when the team shut down. It was a bummer. I think the league will do really well this year. Not many guys from Corner Brook get to play big hockey, but maybe they can try to play with the Royals after minor hockey if they want to.