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Idaho Falls Organization Accepted Into USPHL Premier Mountain Division For 2022-23

By Joshua Boyd / USPHL.com, 03/30/22, 2:00PM EDT

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A Team Name and Logo Expected to be Announced in April

The USPHL Premier’s Mountain Division is one team richer for the 2022-23 season, as a new team in Idaho Falls will be joining the league as an expansion franchise. 

The team in Idaho Falls is continuing to work on a name and logo that they will announce in April. The Idaho Falls organization is led by President/GM Kevin Greene along with The Elmore Sports Group. The Elmore Sports group also owns the Utah Grizzlies of the ECHL as well as seven Minor League baseball teams. 

“Idaho Falls has long been a hockey town, with a thriving youth hockey program. In terms of pro sports, I’ve run a minor league baseball team [Idaho Falls Chukars] for 30 years, and there’s been minor league baseball in Idaho Falls for over 80 years,” said Greene, “But we never had spectator winter sports, really. Now that a new multi-use arena is being built in our city, we knew it was time to bring in a primary tenant, and hockey made the most sense.” 

“The United States Premier Hockey League is excited to work with our partners in Idaho Falls, and we know they will put together a fantastic franchise to begin play in 2022-23,” said USPHL Commissioner Bob Turow. “The Mountain Division has been one of the most exciting to watch in our nationwide footprint, and it’s just gotten even better with the addition of Idaho Falls.” 

The Idaho Falls ownership group, known as East Idaho Hockey, Inc. was relatively unfamiliar with the USPHL prior to its creation, but once it learned about the Nation’s Largest Amateur Hockey Organization, Greene said the partnership made perfect sense. 

“The more research we did, we found that it appeared - to my mind - to be the best fit both geographically and competitively,” said Greene. “The process has been long to this point, but now everything will speed up with the announcement of the team. East Idaho Hockey’s sister company Centennial Management has secured an agreement to run the new Mountain America Center. In addition to hockey dates, we will also be offering a full array of non-hockey events such as concerts, rodeo, family shows, etc.” 

The as-yet-unnamed Idaho Falls hockey team has already sold more than 1,350 season tickets. The arena seats 4,100 people for hockey and up to 6,000 for concerts. Idaho Falls has also sold out all 14 corporate suites and 10 of their 12 club level loge boxes. 

Idaho Falls is a swiftly-growing small city and is the western gateway to Grand Teton National Park and southern gateway to Yellowstone National Park, the entrances of both being inside of a gorgeous two-hour drive either way. 

“The community has really supported this. Everyone is excited about the Mountain America Center which is in a beautiful development called Snake River Landing,” said Greene. Joining the USPH Mountain Division makes perfect geographic sense. The longest trip for the Idaho Falls team would be to Pueblo, which would be an 11-hour bus trip. The closest is the cluster of teams around Salt Lake City - Provo, Ogden and the Utah Outliers (in West Valley City) - all are within a four hour drive. 

 

With its amazing setting near some of the United States’ greatest natural wonders, having a Tier III junior hockey team will be an easy draw for players looking to compete in a tightly-matched Mountain division with a great deal of parity. Combined with the USPHL’s unmatched showcase schedule, providing top-notch exposure for players, it’s a winning situation for all players. 

“We obviously want to do the best we can for the young men who commit here, and if that means sending them to showcases to be seen by the right college scouts, we’re all in,” said Greene. 

Greene and members of his staff took in Game 1 of the Utah vs. Northern Colorado Mountain Division series, where they were able to see USPHL live action for the first time. 

The team is working to hire a Head Coach, having posted the position on the American Hockey Coaches Association website.  Centennial Management has also recently hired a General Manager to run the Mountain American Center, and an announcement will be made Tuesday introducing him to the Idaho Falls community.

The remainder of the staff will carry over from the Idaho Falls Chukars baseball team. 

“We have a full-time staff of five, who will handle all day-to-day business operations for the team.” said Greene. “We are meeting with people every day to renew baseball sponsorships and introduce these sponsors to opportunities within Hero Arena at the Mountain America Center.

The United States Premier Hockey League welcomes the Idaho Falls organization to the USPHL Premier. 

Players interested in learning more about playing for the Idaho Falls organization can reach out to Kevin Greene at kgreene@ifchukars.com