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From Bridgeport to the Reinhart Faceoff, Hockey Shall Go On

Just look at that Ferris Wheel.
Just look at that Ferris Wheel.

So that one hockey league you hear so much about (if you know where to look) is locked out, with some of its training camps originally scheduled to begin today. Thankfully, the hockey must go on.

The Canadian major junior leagues kicked off the season last night, with New York Islanders prospect Griffin Reinhart's WHL Edmonton Oil Kings facing the team captained by his brother Sam, the Kootenay Ice. Edmonton won 5-3 in front of a home crowd of nearly 11,000 -- their 11th straight win over Kootenay.

In the OHL, Ryan Strome and Jesse Graham's Niagara IceDogs started off with a 4-2 win over Erie. Not that we'll be posting CHL scores all the time, but it is a good reminder that hockey continues with or without the NHL, there are other leagues to follow, and the Islanders have defensemen in most of them. The official site has a good roundup of active amateur prospects here.

And of course, Bridgeport kicks off the AHL season Friday, Oct. 12, at the Connecticut Whale, with a roster marked by recent top picks and NHL experience: From Travis Hamonic's 135 NHL games and Nino Niederreiter's 64, to Brock Nelson, Kirill Kabanov, John Persson and Johan Sundstrom joining the pro fold, there will be lots of development tracks to watch.

And many obscure YouTube highlights to fetch.