On Sunday, January 6th, the day that all hockey fans were waiting for came true. The NHL owners and the NHLPA finally agreed on a CBA in order for the season to begin. This puts me in a different position than most hockey fans because of supporting the Chicago Wolves and Chicago Blackhawks.
During the lockout , that took away more than half of the NHL season, the AHL was there to supplement my need to watch hockey. Since these two leagues work in conjunction with each other, players are traded back and forth similar to how a scale functions. NHL players will be called up from the lower league, therefore altering commonly recognized lines and strong bonds that were formed.
Just recently, two Wolves players were called up to Canada to play for the Vancouver Canucks (Wolves NHL affiliate) when they have both gained skills in the minor league. The Canucks and Blackhawks have a strong rivalry that has developed as both teams play especially physical as well as their constant match-ups in the playoffs.
The consequences of the lockout ending are the AHL suffers in terms of losing key players and gaining some unfamiliar faces as well, but all hockey fans get the NHL back and for good this time around.
Additionally, according to multiple sources, AHL attendance went up 10% because there was no other professional hockey to watch besides local leagues and college hockey. What are your thoughts about this dilemma? How will the AHL cope with their parent league back in action?