Pucking the Trend
: Hockey Hits Hall This Winter

The NHL may be mired in a hissy fit between players and owners, but the AHL, pro home to hockey stars of the future, graces Boardwalk Hall this winter.

By Ray Schweibert
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 1 | Posted Jan. 2, 2013

Share this Story:

Photos by Donald Kravitz

Photo by Donald Kravitz

Often sports fans list among their fondest memories having seen superstars before they were superstars, like watching Kobe Bryant finesse Lower Merion High School into a Pennsylvania state title in 1996, or seeing Derek Jeter go three-for-four with the Greensboro Grasshoppers in 1993. 

 Witnessing great athletes like that when they were still honing their skills, and before they walked among the one-percenters, can make for some fine reflection when chewing the fat with the family around the fireplace. 

The latest NHL lockout, while frustrating to hard-core hockey fans, has become a boon to its premier development league, the AHL, and in a way made a sort of cluster of regionalized all-star teams out of its 30 AHL affiliates.

The Albany Devils, who will be playing three regular-season games at Boardwalk Hall’s Art Dorrington Ice Rink starting Jan. 13 (see sidebar for details), have four young players who helped the NHL’s New Jersey Devils reach the Stanley Cup finals last year.

All four would certainly have rejoined that team had it not been for the work stoppage, but can still compete with the Albany Devils due to the AHL’s eligibility rules. They include centers Adam Henrique, Jacob Josefson and Stephen Gionta, and defenseman Adam Larsson.

Likewise the Adirondack Phantoms, the Philadelphia Flyers’ AHL affiliate who compete in Boardwalk Hall on Jan. 20, will see four of their young stars — centers Sean Couturier and Brayden Schenn, left wing Eric Wellwood and defenseman Erik Gustafsson — play in A.C. In all, the Devils and Flyers AHL affiliates have about two dozen young players combined who have tasted some sort of past NHL action. 

“There are a lot of hockey fans in this area [with the Flyers, Devils, Rangers and Islanders all in proximity to A.C.] and at this point, especially with [NHL] hockey not being played, this is a chance for the fans to see a lot of the top prospects and some of the young players who did play in the National Hockey League last year,” says Lou Lamoriello, president and general manager of the New Jersey Devils organization.

“It’s a perfect storm, so to speak, with reference to what’s available to the fans and also the players.”

Roughly 85 percent of all players who make it to the AHL will eventually compete in the NHL. The AHL is baseball’s equivalent of Class AAA, or the notch right below the majors. 

“It’s the next step toward the NHL,” says Lamoriello. “There [are] four players on the AHL Devils right now who played in the National Hockey League last year, and they’re only playing here now because they’re allowed to due to their age, our rules structure, and their contract status. That’s the same case for all the other teams. So the caliber is, without question, outstanding.”

The Albany Devils play the majority of their games at the Times Union Center but have established an exceptional working relationship in Atlantic City and Boardwalk Hall — the only other arena the team has utilized for any home games. In 2010 the Devils played five games in the Hall, and the relationship was instrumental in attracting the 2012 AHL All-Star Classic to A.C. last January, which marked the only time in history that game was held outside the confines of an AHL-affiliated arena. The three games scheduled in 2013 are part of a four-game package that began with the Devils playing the Scranton/Wilkes Barre Penguins (the Pittsburgh Penguins AHL affiliate) on Nov. 24.

“We’re very pleased to be able to present these mini-series of hockey games to our fans,” says Greg Tesone, general manager of Boardwalk Hall and the Atlantic City Convention Center. “We’ve priced the tickets to be family friendly and have also incorporated promotions and special offers in association with all of the games to encourage turnout.

“The New Jersey Devils are a first-class organization, especially in terms of team and player development, and it’s been a pleasure working with them as well as with the management team for the Albany Devils ... Boardwalk Hall is a great venue to host a game of hockey, and fans will be impressed with the quality of play they’ll see from the Albany Devils and their American Hockey League opponents.”

The Albany series continues Jan. 13 against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (the Islanders’ affiliate), Jan. 20 against the Phantoms, and Feb. 24 against the Hershey Bears (Washington Capitals). 

“The fan reaction has been outstanding,” adds Lamoriello. “The cooperation of the community and the building, in particular Greg Tesone, have made for a very comfortable situation. It’s an outstanding building and an excellent environment for a professional hockey game.”

AHL Professional Hockey 
at Boardwalk Hall


Schedule of Games 
(doors open 3pm, all games start 4pm)

Sunday, Jan. 13, 
Albany Devils vs. Bridgeport Sound Tigers 

Sunday, Jan. 20, 
Albany Devils vs. Adirondack Phantoms

Sunday, Feb. 24, 
Albany Devils vs. Hershey Bears

Ticket info:

Individual games are $26 for the first two rows on the glass, $21 for the lower bowl, and $16 for the upper bowl. Special rates for kids aged 2-12, seniors 65 and over, U.S. military and groups of 10 or more are $16 for lower bowl (no discounts for first two rows on the glass), and $11 for upper bowl. $65 four-pack includes four tickets in upper bowl, four hot dogs and four soft drinks (must be purchased in advance).

Tickets are available at the Boardwalk Hall box office, all Ticketmaster locations, at, or by calling 800-736-1420. All tickets $1 more the day of game. Fan Experience Packages are available for groups to become part of the action on the ice on game day. Hockey clubs purchasing 100 or more tickets for any game at any price will receive 90 minutes of free ice time at Boardwalk Hall. For more information, call (609) 348-7023.

Special promos:

The first 1,000 fans will receive a free Coca-Cola on Jan. 13. During the first intermission Jan. 13, NBC-TV 40 sports director Pete Thompson will go head-to-head with two contestants on the ice in the “Beat Pete” shootout.

A “Chuck a Puck” contest will take place Jan. 13 and 20 with proceeds benefiting the United Way and Shop Rite’s Partners In Caring. “Sweet Deal” drawings will take place during the Feb. 24 game, with chances to win gift certificates for Atlantic City Restaurant Week (March 3-9), Shop Rite gift cards, room packages at Caesars, and tickets to future events at Boardwalk Hall. There will also be a “Mites on Ice” game during intermission Feb. 24 featuring youth from the Art Dorrington Ice Hockey Foundation.

T-shirt tosses will take place during timeouts of all games, and the Albany Devils mascot “Devil Dawg” will be available for fan photo opportunities for all games. 


Like Us on Facebook

Follow Us on Twitter @ACWeekly

Add to favoritesAdd to Favorites PrintPrint Send to friendSend to Friend


Comments 1 - 1 of 1
Report Violation

1. Ken Klotz said... on Jan 2, 2013 at 07:35PM

“I am writing to you to ask if their are any lower price tickets,My Wife & I use to go to see the Boardwalk Bullies on a regular Basis,I had a stroke about 5 years ago which put me out of work permanently.I am on disability for the rest of my life,but I would love to bring my wife to see a game once again.If you ever had a Promo Tickets available I would love to come,if you could help me give me a call @ (609)641-8835. Thank You,
Ken Klotz


(HTML and URLs prohibited)

Related Content

Red Line Classic: Hockey Rivalry Renewed
By Lori Hoffman

When former players from both the Flyers and Devils take to the ice at Boardwalk Hall on Sunday, Feb, 9 in the Red Line Classic, the rivalry will be all in fun as the teams are playing in the game to benefit two important charities.

RELATED: Wintertime in the Atlantic City Showrooms Hockey Back in the Hall?
 2011 ECAC Hockey Men’s Championship

Related Content

Devils on Ice
By Lori Hoffman

When the Boardwalk Bullies left town, the hockey ice at Boardwalk Hall was mostly kept under wraps until the AHL (American Hockey League) stepped in and agreed to bring games to the Hall’s first-class venue, beginning in 2011.

Related Content

Who in the Hall

By David J. Spatz

Among A.C.’s future entertainment focal points will be the legendary Brits performing their rock opera ‘Quadrophenia’ at Boardwalk Hall in 2013. 

RELATED: Rob Thomas: Three Shows at Borgata to Support Sidewalk Angels Road Warrior Bolton 
Back in Atlantic City
 5 Questions with Margaret Cho
 NYE 2013 Shows in Atlantic City Life in Color New Year's Eve Celebration at Bader Field Ian Anderson's New Tick on ‘Brick’
 Free Concert
 by 'Fish' Singer Craig Campbell Cancelled

Related Content

Boardwalk Hall's 2012-2013 Winter Events
By Christina Migioia

Boardwalk Hall has announced a stellar 2012-2013 winter line-up with events featuring mega-superstars, undefeated heavyweights, and sport icons sure to provide patrons with top entertainment and the “best seats at the shore.”

RELATED: The Who Reign O’er Atlantic City CRDA Board Backs Harrah’s Regional Conference Center Carrie Country 5 Questions With Miranda Lambert All-Stars of Hip-Hop feat. Rakim, EPMD, Slick Rick and More. Hall-adega Nights

Related Content

Art Dorrington Ice Rink and Community Updates
By Turiya S. A. Raheem

Art Dorrington's daughter Judah was speechless with pride, and thanked everyone for giving her father “his flowers while he can still see them.”

RELATED: Happy Anniversary to Me Locals Load Up on Awards The Art Dorrington Ice Hockey Foundation On the Ice – Off the Streets Pride of the Northside: The Dolphins 28th Annivesary of 101 Women Plus Organization The Other A.C. 5 Questions With Author Turiya S.A. Raheem

Related Content

The Puck Starts Here
: AHL All-Star Classic Skates into Boardwalk Hall
By Ray Schweibert

Sunday at 3pm will feature a skills competition in seven categories among the AHL’s top stars. Monday’s All-Star Game starts 7pm at Boardwalk Hall, pitting the league’s Western Conference stars against their counterparts from the Eastern Conference.

RELATED: Ice Hockey Returns to Boardwalk Hall

Related Content

Hockey Is Back at Boardwalk Hall
By Lori Hoffman

Hockey was back at Boardwalk Hall Sunday night and a crowd that was biased against the designated “home” team, the Albany Devils, cheered on the Phantoms with enthusiasm.

RELATED: Boardwalk Phantoms?

Related Content

Upcoming Casino Concerts in Atlantic City
By Lori Hoffman

A comprehensive listing of entertainment coming to the Atlantic City casinos, Boardwalk Hall and Bader Field.

RELATED: Whoopi Goldberg Back in Atlantic City Gypsy Rock ’n’ Shots Borgata Has Mohr Roasts Aside, Jeff Ross Returns to Atlantic City Bally’s Revival Doobies Do Harrah’s
 Chubby Checker Checklist Dave Mason Lets It Flow at Revel New Year’s Eve 2014 Party Guide
 Kenny G Christmas in A.C.
 NYE 2014: ‘A Tricky Night to Market’
 Smashed by Gallagher Cheech & Chong: A Smoke House of Laughs On the 10th ‘Year’ of Christmas ...
 Tropicana Rings in the Holidays
 Revel’s Battle Royal: Bellator MMA in Atlantic City Gregg Allman: Midnight Rider Returns to Atlantic City Coasting: DO B3 Starting Halloween Night at Chelsea Pub
 'Time Warp' Time 'Blues' Skies for Gary Clark Jr. Variety with 'Latin' Twist
 Kathy Griffin Returns to Borgata 
 Wynn Wants In on Atlantic City Online Gaming? Oh, Mama! Will Toni Braxton Put 
the ‘Hurt’ on Atlantic City? Miss America Parade Allowing Chairs in Free Standing Zones Send in the Sounds
 Crabfries and Craps Mario, O Mario
 Flowers and Crows Let’s Get the Parties Started! Il Divo’s ‘Popera’
 Soundgarden in Bloom Again ACBC: Intimate Dining, Endless Drinks Without Furthur Ado Sarah Silverman: No Apologies Accidental Comic: Kathleen Madigan Paul Reiser: Mad About Comedy Brian Regan’s Never-Ending Tour
 Governor Christie and Pam Breaux Encouraging at Tourism Conference VIPs in the House
 Morrissey’s Mystique 
 Steve Aoki Talks New Year's Eve in Atlantic City from London Year of the DJ
 Hall Passes on Moody Blues Again
 Ho, Ho, Ho ... Don Who?
 Aerosmith Dreams On (and On)
 Lisa Marie-Presley Takes ‘Grace’ to Taj
 Atlantic City Marathon Weekend 
 Pics of the Week: Local Scene Pro Hoops at Hall: 76ers vs. Nets Tony Orlando Home in Atlantic City Jerry Springer Hosts 'The Price Is Right' So Long Summer ‘Dralion’ Does A.C.
 Fall Concerts 
in Atlantic City D.L. Hughley Looks Ahead Duran Duran: Still Hungry
 Like Wolves After the Air Show Country Gold David Brenner: One Night Only 
 Girls Gone Mild
 Band on the Run: Gogol Bordello
 Wallenda Set for Leisurely Stroll Entertainment: Music, Film and Sports Atlantic City's Casino Era Aziz Ansari Is Buried Alive
 Photo Recap: Superstars in Atlantic City Midwest Rock 'n' Roll Express Tour Hits Borgata When July 4 is Wednesday, Double the Fun Jamie Foxx: 
Live Radio, Celebrity Party
 July 4th Spectacular! UFC Returns to Atlantic City A Wit Called Wanda
 Atlantic City Summer Concerts June Arrives Music Notes: Somers Point Beach Concerts, Jazz at Atlantic Club. Ted Nugent Talks Unprecedented Concert Line-up for Atlantic City Atlantic City Weekend: Impressive Lineup Interview: Boxing's Andre 'S.O.G' Ward Stockton Goes to The Beach 2012 Boatin’ the Winter Blues Coasting - Ultimate Elvis Contest
 Pleasing ‘Lucy’ Lovers