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Blog: Mainland Update with Colin Tiggelaar

BCHL Game in Richmond an Annual Event?

On December 29th, the Surrey Eagles and Powell River Kings played at the Minoru Arena in Richmond as part of the city's 16-team Midget Tournament. The BCHL was a big part of the event in Richmond, showcasing the league and the benefits of going the scholarship route.

It was a terrific game in which the “hometown” Eagles won in overtime. The building was six short of a complete sell-out and the atmosphere was electric. The word we got was that close to 500 players were at the contest.

The question is whether or not to make the BCHL game an annual event. My view is it should be part of the schedule. Not only is it nice to have the BCHL brand on display to an entirely different group of fans but also it is great exposure for the players of the game and for the Midget tournament.

The Mac’s Midget tourney is on the same weekend in Calgary and features teams that have no 18-year olds. In the USA, 18-year olds are allowed to be at the Midget level and the Mac’s doesn’t allow that age at the tournament, so the event in Richmond was chalk full of American teams. American-born players can’t play in the BHCL until they are 18 anyway. That gives them a great chance to display their talents to scouts.

There are some of the details of the tournament and why the BCHL should be part of the Richmond tourney. The buzz at the rink from the people there was that the game should become a yearly affair. As to who should play the game, which is up in the air, the logic says two Mainland Division teams like this year. The travel is less and the rivalries should make for good intensity.

All in all, the BCHL’s presence at the tournament was worth all the work. Kudos to the Surrey Eagles for putting on a organized event, the BCHL and the Powell River Kings for making the game first class.