A major hockey attendance milestone was reached on Friday, when the ECHL welcomed its 100 millionth fan in league history. The league welcomed its 100 millionth fan at the Kalamazoo Wings game against the Adirondack Thunder at Wings Event Center.
Beginning with 164,071 fans in its inaugural season in 1988-89, the league drew 99,446,740 fans heading into its 30th Season, and named Kyle McGhan, its 100,000,000 fan As part of the award, Kyle was presented an official ECHL jersey by league Vice President of Hockey Operations, Joe Ernst, with a “100,000,000” nameplate adorning the back, as well as ECHL 30th Anniversary apparel, and a special League pass to attend any ECHL game in the 2017-18 Season, including the 2018 All-Star Classic in Indianapolis. The Kalamazoo Wings also provided Kyle with special K-Wings apparel and tickets to their Green Ice game.
The ECHL has averaged over 4,000 fans per game for 12 consecutive seasons and 25 times in the last 27 years. The league has drawn over four million fans in each of the last three seasons and 10 times in its history.
Tulsa had the largest crowd in the ECHL this season when it drew 12,845 for its home opener against Kansas City on Oct. 13. Worcester welcomed 12,135 fans to the first game in team history on Oct. 14 against Manchester while Fort Wayne had 10,089 fans on Oct. 14 against Toledo for its largest crowd since the 2012-13 season.
The ECHL previously welcomed Carol Stewart as its 50 millionth fan in history on March 11, 2004 at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum in Biloxi when the Mississippi Sea Wolves hosted the Texas Wildcatters.