Two of the top Minor Leagues that hockey fans in the Southwest that they are the most fimilar with, the American Hockey League (AHL) and the Central Hockey League (CHL) have announced their Divisional Alignment for the 2009-2010 season.
American Hockey League (AHL)
For the American Hockey League, the addition of the Texas Stars and several teams moving over the course of the off season have made a few changes to the league for this year.
Bridgeport Sound Tigers
Albany River Rats
Hershey Bears (Defending Champions)
Grand Rapids Griffins
Lake Erie Monsters
San Antonio Rampage
The season will start on October 2 and the schedule will be coming out soon.
The 3 Texas teams will play in the West Division, while the Adirondack Phantoms have moved from Philadelphia to New York, the Abbotsford Heat have moved from Molina, Illinois to Abbotsford, B.C. and the Iowa Chops have suspended operations for the 2009-2010 season while they work out their NHL Affiliation Problems.
No changes to the playoff format with the top 4 teams in all 4 Divisions will go.
Central Hockey League (CHL)
With 3 teams annoucning that they will suspend operations this season in the Oklahoma City Blazers, New Mexico Scorpions and the Rocky Mountain Rage sitting out this year while getting off the ice issues resolved. 15 teams will take the ice where the North and South Conferences will remain, but the Divisions are gone. No more Northeast, Southeast, Southwest or Northwest Divisions. It will be straight South and North Conferences this season as the 7 Texas teams will make up the South along with the Arizona Sundogs while teams like the Tulsa Oilers and the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs will join the North Conference along with the expansion Missouri Mavericks.
The playoff format will stay unchanged while the top 5 teams in both conferences will still go to the playoffs in both Conferences.
Missouri Mavericks (Expansion)
Rapid City Rush
Allen Americans (Expansion)
Corpus Christi Icerayz
Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees
Texas Brahmas (Defending Champions)
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