The story all of you have been clamoring for – OK, just some of you – is set to run in tomorrow’s editions of the Sun and Daily Bulletin. The topic, in all its blunt glory: What’s wrong with the Reign that they are still not making money after three years, and have missed the playoffs the last two?
Justin Kemp talked about making changes – not wholesale changes, but at least one controversial change. The first rule of journalism, unofficially, is that there’s nothing quite like a good controversy to shake up a lazy midweek afternoon. When the state of the team isn’t great, it’s not hard.
Kemp said many interesting but non-controversial things, like this:
• Other than the announcement that Trenton was planning to cease operations, the ECHL Board of Governors meeting in June was rather uneventful. “Minor little rule changes – more along the lines of qualifying offers, ways of doing things … being able to submit qualifying offers electronically, to try to save on paper.”
• Reno does still have a membership. “They were approved again to continue on,” Kemp said. “They’re still trying to get an arena finalized. It’s taking longer than expected. The next step is to present a lease to the Board of Governors. They’re looking at hopefully playing what would be the ’12-13 season.” Will that happen? Kemp can’t say. “Even the Ontario project looked good, looked dead for several years, then caught fire again and took off. This project looked good for a while, died for a while, then could come back.”
• People still think San Diego should have an ECHL team. “I was asked about it by a couple governors,” Kemp said. “I know AEG manages that facility (the San Diego Sports Arena). There have been a couple interested ownership groups that have explored that. They’ve not been able to secure a lease that’s favorable, that anyone thought they could be successful with. It’s kind of sat there. It’s an old building. They have put some upgrades into it, but unless they’re able to get closer on the lease arrangement, I don’t see anyone going in there anytime soon.”
Also, the Western Conference got its second new head coach in as many days Wednesday. Rob Murray, the head coach of the Providence Bruins the last three seasons, takes over behind the bench for the Kelly Cup champion Alaska Aces. Here’s the story out of Anchorage. On Tuesday, recently retired Stockton Thunder defenseman Matt O’Dette was named head coach of the Bakersfield Condors. Here’s the story out of Bakersfield. As the Stockton Record points out, three of the four teams in the Pacific Division now have ties to Thunder head coach Matt Thomas; Las Vegas Wranglers head coach Ryan Mougenel was an assistant under Thomas in Fresno.