by Dan Krieger
August 1, 2022 – ECHL (ECHL)

BASEBALL

Pecos League: The independent Pecos League lists Vallejo (CA) as a proposed market for a 2023 team. A team called the Vallejo Admirals has been part of the California-based Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs since the 2013 season, but the Admirals and the league don’t haven’t played since the 2019 season due to the effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The Pecos League developed a presence in California, and after the 2019 season purchased a Pacific Association team called the San Rafael (CA) Pacifics, which began play in the 2021 Pecos League season.


The Western League: The Independent Fall-Winter Western League, which is affiliated with the Independent Pecos League and recently merged with the Fall Season Desert League, has announced that its 2022 season will run from September 20 to November 5, 2022 with all games to be played at Sam Lynn Park in Bakersfield (CA). The West League currently has four teams.

Independence League Baseball: The Collegiate Summer Independence League, which was created with seven teams that left the Collegiate Summer Expedition League after the 2021 season, is completing its inaugural 2022 season. The league added three new teams and played this season with ten teams fielded in a five-team Great Plains Division and a five-team Nebraskaland Division.

Expedition League: The Summer Collegiate Expedition League played its 2022 season with only four teams as seven teams left after the 2021 season to form the new Independence League Baseball for the 2022 season. A month before the 2022 season, the he Expedition League’s Sioux Falls (SD) Spearfish team was replaced by the North Iowa Ragin’ Roosters, based in Bancroft, about 150 miles east of Sioux Falls. The team played games in Bancroft and some in Sioux Falls. During the first week of July, the Red River Pilots (Grand Forks, ND) team disbanded and the North Iowa Ragin’ Roosters decided to stop playing. With only two teams remaining, the league ended the 2022 season about a month early with the Souris Valley Saber Dogs (Minot, ND) defeating the Pierre (SD) Trappers on July 10 for the championship.

BASKETBALL

Liga Nacional de Baloncesto Profesional: Mexico’s top professional basketball league known as LNBP recently started its 2022 season with ten teams playing 20 games each from July 21 to September 21, 2022. The league had ten teams during the season last, but the Panteras de Aquascalientes and Leñadores de Durango did not return this season. Two teams called Mineros de Zacatecas and Correcaminos Ciudad Victoria, who both last played in the 2020 season, are back for the 2022 season.

Professional Basketball Association: The PBA is currently playing its 2022 spring-summer season and plans its 2022-23 fall-winter season starting in November with the addition of teams called DC Crank (Washington, DC) and Madison County (AL) Mambas. The PBA’s new D-League will begin play nationwide in November and four other D-League teams called Dothan (AL) Sharpshooters, Arizona Rams (Mesa), Alnwick Cardinals (Maryville, TN) and Dunedin ( FL) Flight have been added.

SOCCER

XFL: When the XFL returns in February 2023 with eight teams, the league has announced that it will use Arlington, TX, which will host one of the teams, as the central location for all XFL team practices and training weekdays during the season. Teams will then travel to individual markets for weekend matches.

Indoor Football League: Ownership of the ECHL’s Tulsa Oilers hockey team will operate a new IFL team beginning in the 2023 season and a team name contest has been announced. The city previously had indoor teams called the Tulsa Talons and Oklahoma Defenders. The Talons played all ten seasons (2000-09) of minor arenafootball2 (af2) and one season (2010) in the revamped version of the Arena Football League before moving to San Antonio. The Defenders played one season (2012) in the American Professional Football League and two seasons (2013-14) in the Champions Indoor Professional Football League before going to bed.

Major League Football: The proposed new development MLFB has announced that it will not be moving forward with its inaugural condensed 2022 season due to funding issues. The league was hosting a four-team training camp in Mobile for its first season when multiple reports surfaced of unpaid accommodation fees. MLFB was scheduled to begin the 2022 season on August 9 with teams called Alabama Airborne (Mobile), Arkansas Attack (Little Rock), Ohio Force (Canton) and Virginia Armada (Virginia Beach). Each team was scheduled to play two home games and two away games until August, followed by a league game on September 6. The league planned to move to a full spring schedule next season.

HOCKEY

ECHL: The Edmonton Oilers of the National Hockey League have announced the signing of a new affiliation agreement with Fort Wayne Komets of the ECHL for the 2022-23 season. That leaves the ECHL’s Wichita Thunder looking for a new NHL affiliation. The Kansas City Mavericks of the ECHL, who were affiliated with the Calgary Flames of the NHL, have signed a multi-year affiliation agreement with the Seattle Kraken of the NHL.

North American Hockey League 3: The junior level Tier-III NA3HL, which is affiliated with the North American Hockey League Tier-II, announced its 2022-23 schedule and roster earlier this month. The NA3HL will once again have 34 teams fielded in the six-team Central, East and West divisions and the eight-team South and Frontier divisions. The only off-season change came in the South Division with the Ice Hawks moving from Oklahoma City to Albuquerque as the New Mexico Ice Wolves. Oklahoma City had secured an NAHL Tier II team called the Oklahoma Warriors in the offseason with the move of the Wichita Falls (TX) Warriors from the NAHL. Each NA3HL team will play 47 games from early September 2022 to early March 2023.

SOCCER

National Independent Soccer Association: Division III professional NISA announced that it had removed Valley United FC (Phoenix) from the remainder of the 2022 season schedule, which runs until mid-October, and removed the league standings team. In May, the league alleged several illegal immigration and employment activities by the freshman team. The team took a 30-day hiatus in mid-June while an investigation continued, but the league and team agreed it was now best for the team to suspend all operations. Additionally, NISA has officially announced that Detroit-based Gold Star FC has been accepted into the league and the team is expected to begin play in 2023.

United Soccer League (USL) Championship: A funding issue related to rising costs for a new football stadium project in Pawtucket (RI) for a Division II USL Championship team appears to have been averted. Funding for infrastructure at the stadium site will be transferred to actual stadium construction costs. Original plans called for the stadium to be completed in 2023.

Canadian Soccer League: The men’s semi-professional CSL plays its current 2022 season with six Ontario-based teams called the Toronto Falcons, Continentals FC (Vaughn), York Region Shooters, Serbian White Eagles, Scarborough FC and BGHC1 (Brantford Galaxy/Hamilton City 1). All games are played at the 2,200-seat Centennial Park Stadium in Toronto. The CSL season runs from late May to early August, with each team playing ten games.

OTHER

Athletes Unlimited – Softball: The Athletes Unlimited women’s professional softball league entered its third season of play this week and again features four teams playing all games at the Parkway Bank Sports Complex in Rosemont, IL. The five-week season runs until August 28, 2022. As with other Athletes Unlimited women’s sports leagues in rugby, basketball and volleyball, players earn points each week on a team and individual basis. The top four players (by total points) become captains each week, who then take on new teams (blue, orange, gold, and purple) for the following week’s matches.

Premier Rugby Sevens: The 2022 PR7 rugby season, which included four rugby clubs (Loonies, Headliners, Loggerheads and Experts) each with a seven-man men’s team and a seven-man women’s team competing in a schedule of tournament, closed ends its 2022 season this weekend with all teams participating in a championship event at the Major League Soccer (MLS) stadium in Austin. The 2022 regular season included all four men’s teams and four women’s teams competing in events at MLS Stadium in San Jose on July 9 and MLS Stadium in Washington, DC on July 16.

Dan Krieger is the creator of the Weekly Sports League & Franchise Report, which tracks changes in leagues, teams and nicknames in the sports world since April 2007.

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