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NCDC & USPHL Announce Team Affiliate Structure for 2017-18 Season

By Brett M Bruneteau, 02/05/17, 9:30AM EST


Boston, MA – The United States Premier Hockey League (USPHL) has announced its affiliate structure with the National Collegiate Development Conference (NCDC) for the inaugural 2017-18 season. 
The purpose of the affiliation structure is to create real player development and advancement opportunities within the USPHL, which to date has never been done by a Junior hockey league.
“The USPHL affiliate structure ties together every Junior team in our league,” said USPHL Commissioner Jeff Nygaard.  “This is the culmination of a re-structuring process that will result in our 80-plus Junior teams all pulling in the same direction.  We’re creating an identifiable path from youth to college hockey and beyond, and this is a big part of it.”
The announcement comes on the heels of the NCDC’s first-ever Futures Draft in which 66 of the nation’s top ‘01 and ‘02 birth year players were selected by the conference’s 11 teams.  With many NCAA ice hockey schools excited for this fall’s NCDC launch, the new division is set to transform the pathway to the college hockey.
NCDC Affiliate Structure
The NCDC Affiliate Structure allows for each USPHL Premier team to affiliate with a NCDC team according to the following details:
- Coordination of scouting and tryout camps in addition to year-round player procurement communication.
- Each Premier team will have the right to send a minimum three of its players to the NCDC affiliate for practices and games during the season.
- Tryout and player movement agreements are in place at the league level to create that benefits the NCDC team and each affiliate. 
NCDC Teams with Affiliates Listed Below
Bost­on Bandits
Atlanta Knights
Chicago Cougars
Alpena Flyers
Connecticut Junior Rangers
Palm Beach Hawks
New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs
River Falls Renegades
Islanders Hockey Club
Florida Eels
Detroit Fighting Irish
Wisconsin Rapids Riverkings
Jersey Hitmen
Richmond Generals
Connecticut Nighthawks
Forest Lake Lakers
Junior Bruins
Daytona Racers
Skipjacks Hockey Club
Kalkaska Rhinos
New Jersey Rockets
Hampton Roads Whalers
Steele County Blades
Dells Ducks
Northern Cyclones
Charlotte Rush
Springfield Pics
Ironwood Yoopers
PAL Islanders
Florida Junior Blades
Philadelphia Flyers
Decatur Blaze
Rochester Monarchs
Carolina Eagles
New York Aviators
Traverse City North Stars
South Shore Kings
Tampa Bay Juniors
Hartford Jr. Wolfpack
Motor City Hawks
Syracuse Stars
Potomac Patriots
Tri-City Hawks
Blaine Energy
More on the NCDC
The National Collegiate Development Conference will drop its first puck in September 2017 with 11 organizations committed to offering junior hockey players from around the world a platform to develop their skills and become the college hockey stars of tomorrow.  Players who desire to stay closer to home in the East, or who have a desire to frequently showcase their skills in front of the dozens of NCAA Division I schools in the East, will now have a tuition-free option and the ability to compete in what will become a pipeline for training, development and NCAA Division I advancement. 
With 56 percent of NCAA Division I schools in the NCDC’s footprint, the scouting and development opportunities will increase significantly.  Last year the USPHL had more than 300 college commitments in its pay-to-play model, and the league plans on that number steadily growing as its ability to move players to the NCDC arrives.
The NCDC makes the long wished-for option of tuition-free hockey on the East Coast a reality,” said Commissioner Jeff Nygaard. “It’s always been a good idea but it has taken the commitment and business savvy of the current group of owners to move it forward.”
“We also listened to college coaches who want to recruit prospects in their backyard so they can more efficiently develop relationships with prospects and monitoring their developmental progress.  The USPHL is excited to be part of yet another college advancement solution for high-level players.”
The founding NCDC teams are the Boston Bandits, Junior Bruins, Connecticut Jr. Rangers, Islanders Hockey Club, Jersey Hitmen, New Jersey Rockets, Northern Cyclones, PAL Junior Islanders, Rochester Monarchs, South Shore Kings, and Syracuse Stars.