The Idaho Steelheads (ECHL) and the Dallas Stars are continuing their affiliation, as the clubs have announced a two-year extension through the 2019-20 season.
The Steelheads have served as the ECHL affiliate of the Dallas Stars since the 2005-06 season, as well as during the 2003-04 season. The Steelheads have won two Kelly Cup Championships (2004, 2007) and been to three Kelly Cup Finals since their partnership with the Stars began.
Ten former Steelheads- G Richard Bachman, G Matt Climie, G Dan Ellis, F BJ Crombeen, F Aaron Gagnon, F Gavin Morgan, F Tom Wandell, F Francis Wathier, F Gemel Smith, and F Justin Dowling- have played in the National Hockey League with Dallas.
“We are thrilled to renew our affiliation with the Steelheads for the next two seasons,” said Dallas Stars Assistant General Manager and Texas Stars General Manager Scott White. “The Steelheads organization, under the direction of Head Coach Neil Graham, continues to promote the type of developmental atmosphere we seek to maintain, and we couldn’t be happier to extend our partnership with them.”
The Stars are preparing for their 25th season in Dallas, and their first under Head Coach Jim Montgomery.
During the 2017-18 season, three players under NHL contract with the Stars- defenseman Chris Martenet, forward Cole Ully, and goaltender Philippe Desrosiers- played in Idaho. Desrosiers, a second-round Stars draft pick in 2013, has seen game action in Idaho each of the past three season and ranks among the all-time leaders in the Steelheads’ ECHL record books in appearances (80, ranked 2nd), wins (43, ranked 2nd), and saves (1,991, ranked 3rd).
“We’re pleased to extend our affiliation with the Dallas Stars and Texas Stars,” said Steelheads Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Neil Graham. “We have a great working relationship, and we look forward to working directly with Dallas Stars prospects to push their development.”
“We look forward to many more successful seasons as partners.”
The Texas Stars will continue to operate as Dallas’ top development affiliate in the American Hockey League. During 2017-18, a total of eight players dressed for both the Steelheads and AHL Stars. The Texas Stars, led by former Steelheads Kelly Cup-winning coach Derek Laxdal, won the Western Conference Championship in 2017-18, advancing to the Calder Cup Final for the third time in nine seasons.
The Dallas Stars will be in Boise for the first time this September to hold their 2018 Training Camp at CenturyLink Arena. The camp will run from September 14th to 16th, concluding with a Victory Green vs White Intrasquad Scrimmage on September 16th.