Idaho Steelheads: Wikis


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Idaho Steelheads
City Boise, Idaho
League ECHL
Conference National Conference
Division West Division
Founded 1996
Home arena Qwest Arena
Colors Blue, black, white, silver                    
Head coach Derek Laxdal
Affiliates Dallas Stars (NHL)
Texas Stars (AHL)
Franchise history
1997 to 2003 Idaho Steelheads (WCHL)
2003 to Present Idaho Steelheads (ECHL)
Conference Championships 2 (2003–04, 2006–07)
Kelly Cups 2 (2003–04, 2006–07)

The Idaho Steelheads are an American professional minor league ice hockey team based in Boise, Idaho. The team began playing in 1997 and has been a member of the ECHL since 2003.

During the 2003–04 season and since the 2005–06 season the Steelheads have been an affiliate of the National Hockey League's Dallas Stars.[1] The Texas Stars have been Idaho's AHL affiliate since the 2009-2010 season. Home games are played at the 5,000-seat Qwest Arena in downtown Boise.

The team was founded by Diamond Sports Management in 1996, headed by Cord Pereira. The Steelheads currently play in the West Division of the ECHL's National Conference.

The Steelheads are named for a species of seagoing rainbow trout native to Idaho streams and rivers and popular with local anglers. The fish was never included in the team's original logo, which was in use through the 2005–06 season. When their logo changed however, the fish was included in Idaho's alternate logo.




West Coast Hockey League (1997–2003)

The Steelheads began play as part of a four-team expansion in the West Coast Hockey League in 1997 along with the Tacoma Sabercats, Phoenix Mustangs and Tucson Gila Monsters, which have all since ceased operations. Former New York Islanders defenseman Dave Langevin became Idaho's first head coach. During its inaugural season, in addition to its WCHL schedule the Steelheads played two regular season exhibition games in Boise against the Russian Super League team CKA-Amur (now Amur Khabarovsk). The Steelheads finished third in the WCHL North Division in 1997–98, but were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the Anchorage Aces (now Alaska Aces).[2]

Langevin left the team in 1998 and was replaced as head coach by former NHL goaltender Clint Malarchuk. Under Malarchuk the Steelheads were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs in 1998–99 and 1999–2000.[3]

In 2000 Malarchuk was succeeded as head coach by John Olver, who had coached the Tacoma Sabercats to the WCHL championship in 1998–99. The Steelheads reached the WCHL finals in 2000–01 and 2001–02, but were defeated by the San Diego Gulls and Fresno Falcons, respectively.[4]

Although the Steelheads finished with the best record in the WCHL's final season in 2002–03, the Falcons eliminated them in the first round of the playoffs.[5]

ECHL (2003–present)

In 2003 the WCHL was absorbed by the ECHL and folded. The Steelheads, along with several other WCHL-affiliated teams - namely the Alaska Aces, Bakersfield Condors, Fresno Falcons, Las Vegas Wranglers, Long Beach Ice Dogs and San Diego Gulls - became ECHL members beginning with the 2003–04 season. Idaho won the 2004 Kelly Cup in its first season in the ECHL, defeating the Florida Everblades in the Kelly Cup Finals. The Steelheads were the first team to win the ECHL championship in its first year in the league since the Greensboro Monarchs won the title in the league's second season of operation (1989–90).

In 2004–05 the Steelheads were eliminated in the first round of the ECHL playoffs by the Long Beach Ice Dogs. Olver was succeeded as head coach by Derek Laxdal after the season. In 2005–06 Laxdal guided the team back to the playoffs, but they were eliminated in the second round by the Las Vegas Wranglers.

The Steelheads hosted the 2007 ECHL All-Star Game in Boise. Later that year the Steelheads won their second Kelly Cup by defeating the Stockton Thunder, Las Vegas Wranglers and Alaska Aces in the playoffs, and ultimately the Dayton Bombers in the league finals. Idaho is one of only three active ECHL teams to win multiple league championships, alongside the South Carolina Stingrays and Toledo Walleye (which was then known as the Storm prior to suspending operations in 2007 to build their new arena), each with two. The Hampton Roads Admirals (now in the AHL as Norfolk) won three ECHL championships.

In 2007–08 and 2008–09 Idaho were swept in the first round by eventual champions the Alaska Aces and the Victoria Salmon Kings respectively.

Current roster

Updated November 4, 2009.[6][7]

# Nat Player Pos S/G Age Acquired Birthplace
31 United States Bachman, RichardRichard Bachman G R 22 2009 Salt Lake City, Utah
20 Canada Barlow, EvanEvan Barlow LW L 24 2009 Strathmore, Alberta
10 Canada Derlago, MarkMark Derlago LW L 24 2009 Brandon, Manitoba
United States DeVergilio, KevinKevin DeVergilio C L 24 2009 Sterling Heights, Michigan
16 Canada Flichel, MartyMarty Flichel RW R 34 2004 Hodgeville, Saskatchewan
21 Canada Huxley, AdamAdam Huxley LW L 26 2009 Wainwright, Alberta
11 Canada Kushniruk, BrandanBrandan Kushniruk RW R 24 2009 Hudson Bay, Saskatchewan
2 United States Lampl, CodyCody Lampl Injured Reserve D R 23 2009 Ketchum, Idaho
13 United States Ludwig, TrevorTrevor Ludwig D L 24 2008 Rhinelander, Wisconsin
14 United States McCutcheon, MarkMark McCutcheon C R 25 2009 Ithaca, New York
19 Canada McKnight, MattMatt McKnight Injured Reserve C R 25 2008 Halkirk, Alberta
17 United States Milnamow, BrendanBrendan Milnamow D L 24 2008 Wilton, Connecticut
8 Canada Monast, GuillaumeGuillaume Monast D R 21 2009 Longueil, Quebec
Canada Nastiuk, KevinKevin Nastiuk G R 24 2009 Edmonton, Alberta
28 Canada Neal, MichaelMichael Neal LW L 20 2009 Whitby, Ontario
Canada Olson, MichaelMichael Olson Injured Reserve LW L 25 2009 Tisdale, Saskatchewan
26 Canada Radke, KyleKyle Radke Injured Reserve D L 24 2008 Bashaw, Alberta
15 Canada Rome, AshtonAshton Rome RW R 24 2009 Nesbitt, Manitoba
United States Sorteberg, MattMatt Sorteberg Injured Reserve D R 24 2008 Anoka, Minnesota
9 Canada Spurgeon, TylerTyler Spurgeon C L 23 2009 Edmonton, Alberta
24 United States Stuart, MikeMike Stuart D R 29 2009 Chicago, Illinois
27 United States Swanson, JohnJohn Swanson LW L 24 2009 St. Cloud, Minnesota
7 United States Tardy, WestonWeston Tardy D R 26 2009 Duluth, Minnesota
3 Canada Tousignant, MathieuMathieu Tousignant C L 20 2009 St. Etienne de Lauzon, Quebec
6 Canada Weselowski, RileyRiley Weselowski Injured Reserve D R 25 2008 Pilot Mound, Manitoba
Title Staff member
Head Coach Derek Laxdal
Athletic Trainer Brad Jellis
Equipment Manager Khris Bestel



Year League Trophy
2003–2004 ECHL Kelly Cup
2006–2007 ECHL Kelly Cup


The Steelheads' most notable rival is the Alaska Aces. Both teams are the winningest franchises in the National Conference, and as the end of the season rolls around, its a very close race for first place, usually between Idaho and Alaska.

Another rivalry is with the Las Vegas Wranglers Both teams have met in the playoffs a lot, so this is a typical setting for the playoffs.


External links

Preceded by
Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies
Kelly Cup Champions
Succeeded by
Trenton Titans
Preceded by
Alaska Aces
Kelly Cup Champions
Succeeded by
Cincinnati Cyclones


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