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What will CHL look like next season?

Central Hockey LeagueWith the Quad City Mallards and Odessa Jackalopes already gone from next year’s Central Hockey League lineup, the speculation now centers on who will be back, and who might not.

The Quad City Mallards may have reported decent numbers at the gate — some 2,870 fans a game — but it wasn’t enough to keep the team afloat. “We’ve worked extremely hard to make the Mallards a successful franchise, but in our current position we felt this was the proper decision given the uncertainty in the landscape of the industry,” said Mallards President Chris Presson in a statement on the team website. The Jackalopes, in the meantime, are moving to the North American Hockey League.

In Bloomington, it’s being reported one CHL team will be replacing another, with the Bloomington PrairieThunder — an IHL team playing this season in the CHL — being displaced by a new CHL team

Speculation has gotten to the point that some teams are being forced to affirm their return because of questioning from the media. For example, the management of the Missouri Mavericks was forced to confirm that the team would be returning next season to the CHL, even if it was a smaller circuit. “We will be back, we will be stronger than ever and we will be part of the CHL,” said team president and general manager Brent Thiessen. Similarly, the owners of the Dayton Gems said it would be business as usual next season.


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