SBD/May 1, 2012/Research and Ratings

AHL Attendance Up Nearly 5%; Hershey Tops League Gate For Sixth Straight Season

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The AHL, considered the triple-A level of North American hockey, saw its teams average 5,638 fans per game during the '11-12 regular season, up nearly 5% from last season. The Hershey Bears led all teams at the gate for the sixth straight season. The club saw attendance rise slightly this season, marking the seventh straight season of gains at Giant Center. Eleven clubs saw double-digit percentage gains at the gate, led by the Rochester Americans, who saw a 44.5% jump. The Milwaukee Admirals saw attendance rise 7.4% at Bradley Center for their best average since the '01-02 season. The Bridgeport Sound Tigers had the club's second-best attendance mark since it was founded in '01, with average gate up 17.7%. Only seven of the 30 clubs saw attendance decline this season. The Connecticut Whale saw the sharpest drop, down 19.7% at XL Center in Hartford. After moving from Winnipeg following last season, the St. John's IceCaps ranked ninth in league attendance during the team's first season in Newfoundland. Listed below is team-by-team attendance for the '11-12 AHL regular season, with comparisons to last year (THE DAILY).

'11-12 AHL REGULAR-SEASON ATTENDANCE
TEAM
GMS
TOTAL
AVG.
PREV.
% +/-
GMS ('10-11)
Hershey Bears
38
375,146
9,872
9,800
0.7%
40
Chicago Wolves
38
300,550
7,909
7,453
6.1%
40
Lake Erie Monsters
38
298,096
7,845
6,568
19.4%
40
Providence Bruins
38
297,037
7,817
7,324
6.7%
40
Houston Aeros
38
278,299
7,324
6,326
15.8%
40
Grand Rapids Griffins
38
275,632
7,253
7,241
0.2%
40
San Antonio Rampage
38
271,083
7,134
6,411
11.3%
40
Charlotte Checkers
38
257,189
6,768
6,312
7.2%
40
St. John's IceCaps*
38
239,299
6,297
n/a
n/a
n/a
Milwaukee Admirals
38
236,579
6,226
5,796
7.4%
40
W-B/Scranton Penguins
38
229,053
6,028
6,360
-5.2%
40
Manchester Monarchs
38
216,622
5,701
5,461
4.4%
40
Rochester Americans
38
212,605
5,595
3,872
44.5%
40
Toronto Marlies
38
208,223
5,480
4,694
16.7%
40
Texas Stars
38
207,855
5,470
5,340
2.4%
40
Peoria Rivermen
38
205,726
5,414
5,196
4.2%
40
Syracuse Crunch
38
199,354
5,246
5,154
1.8%
40
Portland Pirates
38
195,997
5,158
4,655
10.8%
40
Norfolk Admirals
38
194,521
5,119
4,490
14.0%
40
Bridgeport Sound Tigers
38
185,236
4,875
4,140
17.7%
40
Hamilton Bulldogs
38
184,232
4,848
4,257
13.9%
40
Adirondack Phantoms
38
175,982
4,631
3,575
29.5%
40
Connecticut Whale
38
173,788
4,573
5,695
-19.7%
40
Worcester Sharks
38
167,292
4,402
4,068
8.2%
40
Rockford IceHogs
38
161,286
4,244
4,360
-2.7%
40
Oklahoma City Barons
38
140,008
3,684
4,155
-11.3%
40
Springfield Falcons
38
139,050
3,659
3,717
-1.6%
40
Binghamton Senators
38
135,950
3,578
3,652
-2.0%
40
Abbotsford Heat
38
134,715
3,545
3,807
-6.9%
40
Albany Devils
38
130,529
3,435
3,114
10.3%
40
AHL TOTALS
1,140
6,426,934
5,638
5,380
4.8%
1,200
             

NOTES: * = Franchise relocated to St. John's, Newfoundland, following last season after the move of the Thrashers to Winnipeg. The Manitoba Moose last season averaged 8,404 fans per game, which is factored into the league's '10-11 average.

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