Tuesday, June 19, 2012

BCHL Makes Move to FASTHockey

The British Columbia Hockey League and FASTHockey announced a long-term partnership offering a rich digital media experience to BCHL fans across the globe. The partnership begins immediately with broadcasting set for the 2012-2013 hockey season.

"Our agreement with FASTHockey not only provides us with the tools we need to raise the profile of our league but ensures our fans will have a first-rate experience watching games at home," said BCHL commissioner John Grisdale. "We'll continue to allow users to not only see live BCHL games but also get caught up on the latest highlights from around the league."

Viewers will be treated to a world-class platform boasting breathtaking video, instant game archival for Video-On-Demand playback, advanced player features like pause, rewind, and fast-forward for live games, user-generated instant replays, and full social integration. Also, they will be able to choose from home and away broadcasts so they can truly have a professional viewing experience.

"We are incredibly excited to partner with the BCHL," said Marc Ruskin, President of FASTHockey, "Providing BCHL fans with a high quality experience, from video delivery through an array of interactive tools, will help support the league's digital media initiatives and provide the teams and players with some great tools for promotion and advancement."

FASTHockey will have each BCHL rink outfitted with up-to-date streaming video hardware and in addition to the regular season and playoffs, will carry all 16 games at the inaugural Showcase event in Chilliwack September 7 to 9, 2012. The BCHL League Office and its member teams will take advantage of FASTHockey's Content Editing and Syndication Suite empowering users to cut, share, and syndicate clips to their websites, blogs, and popular social media platforms.

Original press release prepared by:
Brent Mutis
BCHL Communications Director

Friday, June 8, 2012

BCHL AGM Changes:

The British Columbia Hockey League held its annual general meeting in Richmond June 7, 8 and 9 with governors approving a number of changes that will take effect in the coming season.

First, the new BCHL playoff format was officially unveiled. The league goes to a three-division alignment for the 2012-13 season. In the Coastal Conference, which is now made up of the Island Division and Mainland Division, the top four of the five teams in each division will qualify for post-season play (#1 vs. #4, #2 vs. #3). Best-of-five series will be played in each the first two rounds to determine conference finalists and the Coastal Conference final will be a best-of-seven.

In the Interior Conference, which consists of the six-team Interior Division, the top four teams will qualify for post-season play (#1 vs. #4, #2 vs. #3). Two rounds, each a best-of-seven, will be played to determine a conference champion. The Fred Page Cup finals will also be a best-of-seven series.

Alterations to the BCHL regulations were approved with significant changes being that the affiliate draft of 15-year-old players is discontinued, that rosters will now consist of 22 players instead of 21, that coaches are allowed to place an injured player on long-term injured reserve which would free up a spot on the 22-man roster and that penalties are now possible for players with damaged pants.

The Junior A Supplement initiative, begun in the 2010-11 season to curb fighting and checking-from-behind infractions, was also extended for two more seasons. Finally, a sub-committee made up of BCHL coaches was officially approved. This body, which brings concerns from among the league’s coaching ranks to the board of directors, is co-chaired by Mike Vandekamp of Nanaimo and Jason Williamson of Vernon.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Fairview to Join Junior B Ranks:

Fairviews' Chance Lund

The North West Junior Hockey League has officially added an eighth team. On Saturday, June 2, league executives, along with representatives from all seven current teams, met in Grande Prairie to listen to a presentation from Fairview hockey hopefuls and eventually voting in Fairview as the newest team in the Junior B hockey league. 
The vote resulted in a unanimous decision to welcome Fairview to the league, who put together a thorough presentation outlining the reasons the city needs the new team.
Such of those reasons included the recent drop off in minor hockey numbers within Fairview, as well as the lack of a senior men’s team.

The city feels this will allow Fairview’s better minor hockey players to stay in the town following the conclusion of their minor hockey career.

Attendance is dropping at Fairview’s local college, and a new hockey team would provide some scholarship opportunities for its players.

Representatives from Fairview also spoke about their strong financial backing, something that Al Spence, President of the NWJHL mentioned while speaking with Energeticcity.ca.

"Financially it’s all good," he said. "They set out a pretty firm budget and its looks really good. Financially there will not be any problems out of Fairview."

No firm decisions have yet been made regarding the new team’s coaching staff, as they were unable to make any decisions until a vote had gone through.

Spence says the team did lay out some recommendations for various executive and coaching positions, but nothing has been made official.

As for the players, the team will be holding its first set of tryouts come September and a team website is already in development.

The name on the front of the jersey is yet to be determined, and Fairview wants to kick off its campaign by extending an invitation to its fans.

Spence says representatives discussed issuing a contest to local schools in Fairview to come up with a name and possibly even a logo to be used for the new team.

The Fort St. John Huskies will know exactly when they meet the newly instated team come June 16, when league executives get together and create the 2012-2013 NWJHL schedule.