Chicago Express

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Chicago Express
ChicagoExpress.PNG
City Hoffman Estates, Illinois
League ECHL
Conference Eastern
Division North
Operated 2011-2012
Home arena Sears Centre
Colors Navy, Gray, Sky Blue
              
Owner(s) Craig Drecktrah
Head coach Steve Martinson
Affiliates

Columbus Blue Jackets (NHL)

Springfield Falcons (AHL)
Franchise history
2011-2012 Chicago Express

The Chicago Express was a professional ice hockey team located in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, serving the Chicago market. The Express was a member of the North Division of the ECHL's Eastern Conference.[1] The team played its home games at the Sears Centre.[2]

The Express were owned by Craig Drecktrah, who formerly owned the United Hockey League's Chicago Hounds and Rockford IceHogs.

It was announced on July 13, 2011 that the Express would be affiliated with the NHL's Columbus Blue Jackets and the AHL's Springfield Falcons.[3]

On April 6, 2012, it was announced that the Chicago Express would cease operations due to poor attendance numbers and lack of support.[4] The Express finished last in the league for average attendance with 2,508.[5] On some nights, the Express, which also had AHL and NHL competition in the same market, was struggling to get 1,000 spectators at its games.

Team history[edit]

The Express' mascot, Traxx the horse

Inception[edit]

The team formed out of talks between owner Craig Drecktrah and officials at the Sears Centre. On the heels of the Chicago Hounds folding in 2009 after only playing one season (2006–07) at the Sears Centre, Drecktrah worked with arena and Hoffman Estates village officials to bring in an ECHL franchise.[2] The league approved the franchise's application at the ECHL's annual Board of Governors Meeting in June 2010.[6]

Team name[edit]

Express center ice logo during their 1st and only ECHL season in 2011-12

To name the new franchise, the team held a special name the team contest that eventually received over a thousand unique name suggestions. On July 22, the four finalists for the team name were unveiled. They were The Chicago Blizzard, Hoffman Estates Hammers, Chicago Knights and Chicago Express. Voting for the team's name closed on August 4, with Express announced as the winner on September 21. The final four portion of the contest received a total of 20,000 votes.[7]

Mascot[edit]

The mascot for the Chicago Express was "Trax" the Horse.

Players[edit]

Chaz Johnson finished as Chicago's all-time leader in goals scored with 20.
Tyler Donati led the Express with 47 assists and 61 points.
Devin DiDiomete was the Express' all-time leader in penalty minutes.
Allen York played for both the Express and the NHL's Columbus Blue Jackets in the 2011–12 season.
Nathan Lutz was the captain of the Express.
Skaters
Player # Pos GP G A Pts PIM
Akins, DrewDrew Akins 20 F 16 1 0 1 13
Burrows, JoshJosh Burrows 4 D 43 3 8 11 25
Campbell, DarcyDarcy Campbell 6 D 61 8 29 37 87
Cucci, JoeJoe Cucci 14 C 14 1 4 5 11
Delisle, StevenSteven Delisle 5 D 38 1 3 4 20
DiDiomete, DevinDevin DiDiomete 27 LW 41 11 16 27 277
Donati, TylerTyler Donati 19 RW 46 14 47 61 29
Ellington, TaylorTaylor Ellington 4 D 17 5 6 11 14
Embach, MikeMike Embach 16 F 60 13 13 26 41
Faubert, Pierre-LucPierre-Luc Faubert 72 RW 72 19 25 44 70
Gingera, MattMatt Gingera 26 F 6 1 0 1 2
Grantham, RyleyRyley Grantham 71 F 19 6 5 11 75
Gratchev, MaximeMaxime Gratchev 93 F 27 8 20 28 38
Henningson, DanDan Henningson 12 D 27 1 2 3 10
Johnson, ChazChaz Johnson 98 RW 64 20 15 35 132
Johnson, TylerTyler Johnson 18 C 20 3 3 6 8
Lehman, ScottScott Lehman 7 D 11 0 2 2 7
Lutz, NathanNathan Lutz 44 D 72 6 7 13 121
Maiani, AnthonyAnthony Maiani 7 F 39 4 14 18 10
Marvin, AaronAaron Marvin 17 C 65 11 27 38 49
Moje, KylerKyler Moje 15 F 2 0 0 0 0
Motherwell, BrettBrett Motherwell 42 D 25 0 8 8 20
Ostrow, KyleKyle Ostrow 9 F 59 11 20 31 23
Painchaud, ChadChad Painchaud 27 LW 27 11 11 22 29
Palm, TrentTrent Palm 5 D 4 0 0 0 0
Paquette, DanickDanick Paquette 20 F 13 7 4 11 27
Paris, DrewDrew Paris 2 D 22 3 6 9 10
Riley, BlairBlair Riley 22 LW 15 7 9 16 8
Robins, BobbyBobby Robins 25 F 28 7 8 15 123
Romano, TonyTony Romano 15 C 3 0 0 0 0
Ryd, JohanJohan Ryd 26 F 3 0 0 0 0
Spencer, TimTim Spencer 21 F 8 0 1 1 42
Stephens, EvanEvan Stephens 24 D 48 3 16 19 22
Thomas, MikeMike Thomas 7 F 2 0 0 0 4
Tifu, YannickYannick Tifu 10 C 17 3 8 11 19
Tomassoni, MattMatt Tomassoni 24 D 3 0 0 0 0
Wietecha, ScottScott Wietecha 3 D 54 14 13 27 69
Zion, JonathanJonathan Zion 8 D 40 10 15 25 29
Goaltenders
Player # GP MIN W L OTL GAA SV% SO
Dainton, PaulPaul Dainton 31 18 794 6 3 2 3.25 .896 1
Madore, RobRob Madore 31 12 722 8 3 1 2.41 .926 1
Mannino, PeterPeter Mannino 31 22 1334 10 8 2 3.15 .899 1
Nolan, RobRob Nolan 47 16 844 6 8 1 2.99 .896 0
Ostergard, BrooksBrooks Ostergard 47 1 65 0 0 1 4.65 .844 0
York, AllenAllen York 30 11 604 4 4 1 3.28 .892 0

All player statistics taken from the ECHL.com.[8]

Team captain[edit]

  • Nathan Lutz, 2011–12

References[edit]

  1. ^ Press release (August 1, 2011). "Annual ECHL Board of Governors Meeting concludes". ECHL. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Selvam, Ashok (June 19, 2010). "Sears Centre to house new hockey team". Daily Herald. Retrieved July 13, 2011. 
  3. ^ Press release (July 13, 2011). "Columbus Blue Jackets Announce ECHL Affiliation Agreement Chicago Express for 2011-12". Columbus Blue Jackets. Retrieved July 13, 2011. 
  4. ^ http://echl.com/chicago-withdraws-membership-from-echl-p176989
  5. ^ http://echl.com/stats/schedule.php?view=attendance&season_id=22
  6. ^ Press release (June 24, 2010). "Expansion membership approved for Chicago". ECHL. Retrieved July 13, 2011. 
  7. ^ Selvam, Ashok (February 8, 2011). "Sears Centre welcomes new hockey team to town". Daily Herald. Retrieved July 13, 2011. 
  8. ^ "2011–12 Season Statistics - Chicago Express". ECHL. Retrieved 2012-04-26. 

External links[edit]