For Bridgeport, new division, old flavor

The AHL announced its 2015-16 alignment today, which could mean we’ve seen the last of the hectic franchise movement (Albany’s official re-upping was the last public semi-question-mark, though that one-year extension had seemed done since at least the end of the season). For Bridgeport, it’s an interesting mix, throwback in some ways: Hartford, Providence, Springfield, Portland from New England (they’re the last New England teams left), plus the Pennsylvania three, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Hershey and Lehigh Valley. The Sound Tigers have been in a division with all of them before, though obviously not all at the same time: The non-Berkshire League (RIP) New England teams as recently as 2011, the Mid-Atlantic teams as recently as 2009 (and more recently for the Phantoms, when they were in Glens Falls).

The other Eastern Conference division brings Rochester, Toronto and Utica over from the Western Conference, making it an Empire-Plus, with the five New York teams and Toronto and St. John’s. The Pacific Division also includes the two remaining Texas teams, while the Central Division includes all those midwest teams (including Manitoba).

Schedule and playoff format to come.

Michael Fornabaio