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Erie Otters

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Erie Otters
Erieotters
City: Erie, Pennsylvania
League: Ontario Hockey League
Conference: Western
Division: Midwest
Founded: 1996 (1996)–97
Home Arena: Louis J. Tullio Arena
Colours: Navy blue, red, yellow and gold
         

         

Head Coach: Kris Knoblauch
General Manager: Dave Brown
Affiliate(s): Huntsville-Muskoka Otters
Franchise history
1946–53: Windsor Spitfires
1953–60: Hamilton Tiger Cubs
1960–74: Hamilton Red Wings
1974–76: Hamilton Fincups
1976–77: St. Catharines Fincups
1977–78: Hamilton Fincups
1978–84: Brantford Alexanders
1984–88: Hamilton Steelhawks
1988–96: Niagara Falls Thunder
1996–present: Erie Otters


The Erie Otters are a major junior ice hockey team in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). Based in Erie, Pennsylvania, USA, they have played their home games at the Louis J. Tullio Arena since 1996. The Otters are the only Pennsylvania-based team in the OHL and one of only three United States-based teams in the league.

HistoryEdit

The Niagara Falls Thunder relocated from Niagara Falls, Ontario to Erie in 1996, becoming the Erie Otters. The team takes its name from the otter, a water creature common to the south shore of Lake Erie.

The Otters' ownership partners are Ron Sertz, Jeff Fatica, and Ray Irwin. Sherwood Bassin is the general manager and a managing partner of the team. Walt Wingfield serves as head scout.

The first three years in Erie were building years for the Otters, with the team eliminated in the first round of the playoffs each year. In the fourth year, all the hard work paid off with their first Midwest Division championship.

It would be their first of three consecutive Midwest Division championships for the Otters, culminating in an OHL Championship in 2001–02. Dave MacQueen won the Matt Leyden Trophy in 2000–01 as the OHL Coach of the Year. Sherwood Bassin was awarded OHL Executive of the Year in 2001–02 for his role in building a championship team as general manager.

The Erie Otters celebrated their 10th anniversary in the 2005–06 season.

2001–02 OHL ChampionsEdit

In the 2001–02 season, the Erie Otters became the second OHL team based in the United States to win the OHL Championship. The first were the 1995 champions Detroit Junior Red Wings (now the Plymouth Whalers).

After a disappointing conference finals loss to Plymouth the previous year, the Otters used their experience and work ethic to push themselves through the playoffs. Otters players had a puck holder hung on the wall of the dressing room with 16 slots to fill, equal to the number of wins needed for the title. Erie earned that 16th puck by defeating the Barrie Colts in game 5 of the 2002 finals.

The Otters bid to host the 2002 Memorial Cup, but the Guelph Storm were chosen instead. Erie earned a berth in the tournament as OHL Champions but ultimately finished in third place.

Two-time OHL MVP Brad Boyes led the Otters as captain. Team members for the 2002 championship were:

T. J. Aceti, Chris Berti, Brad Bonello, Brad Boyes, Chris Campoli, Carlo Colaiacovo, Noel Coultice, Sean Courtney, Brandon Cullen, Scott Dobben, Jeff Doyle, Chris Eade, David Herring, Alex Karaulchuk, Michal Kokavec, Brian Lee, Thomas Lee, Chris Martin, Mike McKeown, Adam Munro, Cory Pecker, Mike Rice, Dave MacQueen (coach), Sherwood Bassin (GM)

ChampionshipsEdit

CoachesEdit

Dave MacQueen won the Matt Leyden Trophy in 2000–01 as the OHL Coach of the Year.

Multiple years in parentheses

PlayersEdit

A total of 21 players have been selected at the National Hockey League Entry Draft since the franchise relocated to Erie, including a five-year stretch from 1997–2001 in which seven members of the team were selected in the first round: (1997 Jason Ward, 11th, Montreal Canadiens; 1998 Michael Rupp, ninth, New York Islanders; 1999 Tim Connolly, fifth, New York Islanders; 2000 Nikita Alexeev, eighth, Tampa Bay Lightning; Brad Boyes, 24th, Toronto Maple Leafs; 2001 Carlo Colaiacovo, 17th, Toronto Maple Leafs; and Adam Munro, 29th, Chicago Blackhawks).

Award winnersEdit

NHL alumniEdit

Retired numbersEdit

Team recordsEdit

Team records for a single season
StatisticTotalSeason
Most points1022000–01
Most wins522013-14
Most goals for3312014-15
Least goals for1692011-12
Least goals against1702013-14
Most goals against3782006–07
Individual player records for a single season
StatisticPlayerTotalSeason
Most goalsDane Fox642013-14
Most assistsDylan Strome842014-15
Most pointsDylan Strome1292014-15
Most points, rookieAlex DeBrincat1042014-15
Most points, defencemanChris Campoli662003–04
Best GAA (goalie)Adam Munro2.312000–01
Goalies = minimum 1500 minutes played


Season-by-season resultsEdit

Regular seasonEdit

Legend: OTL - Overtime Loss, SL - Shootout Loss, PTS - Points, GF - Goals For, GA - Goals Against

Season Games Won Lost Tie OTL SL PTS PCT% GF GA Standing
1996–97662336 7 -- 530.4022402605th Central
1997–98663328 5 -- 710.5382612524th West
1998–99683133 4 -- 660.4852712973rd Midwest
1999–00683328 4 3- 730.5152242291st Midwest
2000–0168451110 2-1020.7352641711st Midwest
2001–02684122 4 1- 870.6322462181st Midwest
2002–03682435 6 3- 570.3971812485th Midwest
2003–04682926 6 7- 710.4712212125th Midwest
2004–05683126 6 5- 730.5001862074th Midwest
2005–06682635- 4 3 590.4342192665th Midwest
2006–07681550- 1 2 330.2432093785th Midwest
2007–08681846-2 2 400.2942063435th Midwest
2008–09683429-3 2 730.5372082543rd Midwest
2009–10683328-5 2 730.5372572594th Midwest
2010–11684026-1 1 820.6032812293rd Midwest
2011–12681052-3 3 260.1911693385th Midwest
2012–13681940-4 5 470.3462063125th Midwest
2013–14685214-2 0 1060.7793121702nd Midwest
2014–15685014-2 2 1040.7653312121st Midwest
2015–16685215-1 0 1050.7722691831st Midwest

PlayoffsEdit

  • 1996–97 Lost to Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in division quarter-finals.
  • 1997–98 Lost to London Knights 4 games to 3 in division quarter-finals.
  • 1998–99 Lost to Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
  • 1999–00 Defeated Brampton Battalion 4 games to 2 in conference quarter-finals.
    Lost to S.S. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 3 in conference semi-finals.
  • 2000–01 Defeated London Knights 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
    Defeated Brampton Battalion 4 games to 1 in conference semi-finals.
    Lost to Plymouth Whalers 4 games to 1 in conference finals.
  • 2001–02 Defeated Sarnia Sting 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
    Defeated London Knights 4 games to 2 in conference semi-finals.
    Defeated Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 1 in conference finals.
    Defeated Barrie Colts 4 games to 1 in finals. OHL CHAMPIONS
    Lost to Victoriaville Tigres 5-4 (OT) in the Memorial Cup semi-finals.
  • 2002–03 Out of playoffs.
  • 2003–04 Defeated Sarnia Sting 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
    Lost to London Knights 4 games to 0 in conference semi-finals.
  • 2004–05 Lost to Kitchener Rangers 4 games to 2 in conference quarter-finals.
  • 2005–06 Out of playoffs.
  • 2006–07 Out of playoffs.
  • 2007–08 Out of playoffs.
  • 2008–09 Lost to London Knights 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
  • 2009–10 Lost to Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 0 in conference quarter-finals.
  • 2010–11 Lost to Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 3 in conference quarter-finals.
  • 2011–12 Out of playoffs.
  • 2012–13 Out of playoffs.
  • 2013-14 Defeated Saginaw Spirit 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
    Defeated Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 0 in conference semi-finals.
    Lost to Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in conference finals.
  • 2014-15 Defeated Sarnia Sting 4 games to 1 in conference quarter-finals.
    Defeated London Knights 4 games to 0 in conference semi-finals.
    Defeated Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 2 in conference finals.
    Lost to Oshawa Generals 4 games to 1 in finals.
  • 2015-16 Defeated Saginaw Spirit 4 games to 0 in conference quarter-finals.
    Defeated Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 1 in conference semi-finals.
    Lost to London Knights 4 games to 0 in conference finals.

Uniforms and logosEdit

The team mascot is an anthropomorphic otter named Shooter, who wears a home jersey. The Otters home uniforms have a navy blue background; the road uniforms have a white background. Both have red, yellow and gold trim. The logo is an angry otter with a hockey stick. The team changes their color after the annual christmas break in the league. It is a league wide tradition teams go from wearing their home whites to their home colors.

For the 2005–06 season (the team's 10th/Diamond Anniversary), the Otters unveiled a third jersey as part of the "Make Other Teams Bleed" campaign. The jersey has a red background with navy blue, white and gold trim. The third logo has "Erie" in big letters across the chest with "Otters" written beneath it.

ArenaEdit

The Erie Otters play home games at the Louis J. Tullio Arena located in downtown Erie, Pennsylvania. The arena was built in 1983 and seats 5,500 spectators. The Tullio arena is one of the loudest in the league and works well for home ice advantage. The arena is part of the Erie Civic Center Complex, which includes Jerry Uht Park—a baseball stadium and home to the AA Erie SeaWolves.

External linksEdit

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