SBD/May 16, 2017/Research and Ratings

ECHL Sees Lowest Regular-Season Average Attendance Figure Since '07-08

The ECHL, considered the Double-A level of minor league hockey, averaged 4,252 fans per game during the ’16-17 regular season, marking the league’s lowest figure since ’07-08. The league’s 27 teams, flat compared to a season ago, saw attendance fall 3% from the ’15-16 season. The ECHL has now seen three straight seasons of attendance declines. The Ft. Wayne Komets once again led all ECHL teams with an average of 7,568 fans, up 1% from last season. Two clubs saw double-digit gains, with the Adirondack Thunder leading all clubs (+15%). Six clubs saw double-digit percentage drops. The Manchester Monarchs saw the sharpest fall, with the New Hampshire-based club down 23% for the season. The ECHL will gain two teams next season when the Jacksonville IceMen and Worcester Railers join. However, it also is losing the Alaska Aces, who folded following the season.

ECHL REGULAR-SEASON ATTENDANCE
TEAM
GAMES
TOTAL
AVG.
PREV.
% +/-
Ft. Wayne Komets
36
272,456
7,568
7,484
1.1%
Toledo Walleye
36
254,660
7,074
6,982
1.3%
Tulsa Oilers
36
219,971
6,110
6,089
0.3%
Orlando Solar Bears
36
197,912
5,498
6,226
-11.7%
Utah Grizzlies
36
192,949
5,360
5,095
5.2%
Florida Everblades
36
190,215
5,284
5,214
1.3%
Missouri Mavericks
36
182,447
5,068
5,154
-1.7%
Colorado Eagles
36
171,039
4,751
4,906
-3.2%
Atlanta Gladiators
36
170,573
4,738
4,943
-4.1%
Wichita Thunder
36
168,801
4,689
4,682
0.1%
Allen Americans
36
156,234
4,340
4,571
-5.1%
Idaho Steelheads
36
153,119
4,253
4,198
1.3%
Cincinnati Cyclones
36
151,697
4,214
4,565
-7.7%
Greenville Swamp Rabbits
36
142,616
3,962
3,658
8.3%
Quad City Mallards
36
141,418
3,928
4,369
-10.1%
Reading Royals
36
140,764
3,910
3,750
4.3%
South Carolina Stingrays
36
134,434
3,734
3,957
-5.6%
Alaska Aces*
36
130,430
3,623
3,829
-5.4%
Indy Fuel
36
129,287
3,591
3,856
-6.9%
Manchester Monarchs
36
128,863
3,580
4,622
-22.6%
Rapid City Rush
36
119,563
3,321
3,717
-10.6%
Brampton Beast
36
111,813
3,106
2,784
11.6%
Norfolk Admirals
36
107,414
2,984
3,767
-20.8%
Adirondack Thunder
36
101,883
2,830
2,462
15.0%
Wheeling Nailers
36
95,419
2,651
2,795
-5.2%
Kalamazoo Wings
36
83,992
2,333
2,298
1.5%
Elmira Jackals
36
82,815
2,300
2,785
-17.4%
ECHL TOTALS
972
4,132,784
4,252
4,386
-3.1%


NOTES
: Attendance figures for last season include the Evansville IceMen, who were dormat for the '16-17 season, but will return in Jacksonville for the '17-18 season. Next season also will include the expansion Worcester Railers. * = Alaska Aces ceased operations after the '16-17 regular season.

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