Albuquerque Journal from ,  on February 24, 1974 · Page 56
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Albuquerque Journal from , · Page 56

Issue Date:
Sunday, February 24, 1974
Page 56
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Six Guns To Be Kansas City's Only Minor League Team Montreal Canadiens, Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals. Division 4: Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres. California Golden Seals and Toronto Maple Leafs. Teams added for 1976-77 will go into Division 1 and 4, with Denver, Phoenix, San Diego and Seattle currently strongest contenders. Two teams will be added. picked older and "over the hill" players, to their regret. "WE'RE GOING to concentrate on youth right from the start," Abel emphasized. The Scouts will be in a rugged division as reconstructed under the new NHL format. It will be a whole new ball game for the entire NHL next season, a drastic departure from what the league looked like a few years ago. FOR INSTANCE, there will be four divisions, instead of the present two. But Abel doesn't necessarily like the alignment which puts Kansas City in with the always powerful Chicago Black Hawks, and such early expansion teams as St. Louis, Minnesota and Vancouver. "I don't know how they got Vancouver (from British Columbia in Western Canada) in with us, but they did." This will be known as Division 3. UNDER THE new concept, the other divisions will look like this: Division 1: Atlanta Flames, New York Islanders, New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers. Division 2: Detroit Red Wings, Los Angeles Kings, Kansas City and Washington, as expansion newcomers, will get first picks with a toss of the coin deciding which team has first crack at the available players. All told there will be three phases of the draft involving the expansion procedure for Kansas City and Washington, General Manager Abel said. . FIRST, there is the goalie draft, which is separate from the regular NHL draft. This is usually held the day before the general NHL draft involving the junior players and the intra-league and inter-league drafts. "For instance," Abel explained, "Toronto now has three goalies on its roster playing regularly on a rotation basis. They have Dune Wilson, Doug Favell and Eddie Johnson, all established NHL goalies. The Ix-afs will be only able to protect two. The other one can be drafted. We might pick up that unprotected goalie unless Washington gets first crack at him." And he also pointed out that Albuquerque goalie Ray Reeson could be drafted early. Reeson, owned by the Buffalo Sabres, could conceivably be on the draft list since Buffalo already has two established goalie veterans Dave Dryden and Roger Crozier. Reeson has been outstanding for the Six Guns despite the poor team record. ABEL SAID the Kansas City Scouts would draft Reeson if he was still available after the first round, implying that the Scouts would go first for a young, experienced NHL goalie left unprotected. But Reeson is rated highly by Abel, as are such other Six Gun players as Kenny Davidson, Chris Hayes, Iarry O'Connor, Barry Boughner, Ken Ireland, Morris Stefaniew and Alex Kngler. The Scouts, Abel said, plan to build up their system with young players right from the start and not make the mistake that some teams (such as Is Angeles, California and Pittsburgh) committed in the initial NHL draft back in 1967. Those teams Free Seminar Do It Yourself Cabin Building It's easy to build your own hideaway home even if you've never built anything before. Call today to register for this exciting free seminar conducted by the building experts at Forest Homes. FEBRUARY 25-26 ALBUQUERQUE FEBRUARY 27 LOS ALAMOS (505) 265-6407 Forest Homes Division oj Southwest YowiVs, le. 13 RETAIL 3rAU AYAiLAbU FT GALLERIA MALL Eubank & Montgomery U EL DORADO SQUARE Juan Tabo & Montgomery 1-1 HOFFMANTOWN PLAZA Wyoming & Menaul I D D FIDELITY SQUARE Candeloria & Wyoming Li pa for tha moil selection of retail pac, coll Paul Halvay. 268-4551 or 293-6370 3 By BERN GANTNER The Kansas City Scouts, who will join the National Hockey League along with the new Washington Capitals as expansion teams next fall, will operate with only one minor league team in 1974-75 and that will be the Albuquerque Six Guns. As New Mexico hockey fans well know, Kansas City is the parent club of the first year Six Guns, a club which was assembled at the last minute last fall for operation in the rugged Central Hockey League. The Central Hockey League is equivalent to a Triple A baseball league in caliber of play. SID ABEL, general manager of the Scouts, emphasized in an interview here that "Kansas City will operate with only one minor league team next season and that will be Albuquerque," "Although our hands were tied and we were unable to provide you (Albuquerque) with a winning team, I want to assure the hockey fans here, that we can do better next year when we have our own players," Abel said. The Six Guns this season are comprised of players loaned from a half dozen NHL teams, including Montreal, Boston and New York Rangers. ABEL IS a former hockey great with the Detroit Red Wings and one of the very few former stars to step up successfully into the managerial ranks, first as coach and then as general manager. He believes in hockey excellence, a goal he has set out to attain for both Kansas City and Albuquerque next year. "For a winless expansion team, Albuquerque's attendance has been remarkable (the Six Guns have averaged about 2500 per game)," Abel said. And he had nothing but praise for Tingtey Coliseum which he called one of the finest minor league arenas anywhere. "It's excellent for hockey and is better than some major league arenas," Abel said. "We've come a long way since 1967," Abel remarked in recalling the initial expansion of the NHL in 1967. IN THE SPRING of that year, Abel pointed out, the NHL wound up its regular campaign with six team - Chicago, Montreal, Toronto, New York, Det!": a-d Boston, finishing in that order. The T .pM!" Maple Leafs went on to capture the 'amed y j!iie Cup in the traditional playoffs. Between Ma '.f :oa- and the fall of that year, the NT II, double j ,;s merrxT teams, adding Philadelphi-a, St. I-ouis. M''i'c- Pittsburgh, Ixts Angeles and California m tha' r;r historic expansion which had evaded the league tor near,-, 20 years. TWO YEARS later the NHL expanded further, moving into Vancouver and Buffalo. And this coming tall, seven years after initial expansion, the MIL ' .11 latch onto two more cities Kansas Cit ana Washington, D.C., giving the league IK teams, pernap the fastest expansion pace for one league ir. the hist iry of professional sports, Abel believes. "WHEN WE (Kansas C ity - draft at the NHL meeting in .June in Montreal, we will draft young players from the junior ranks in Canada, and we will be going for youth even in the NHL expansion draft," Abel said. "WE WILL NOT draft such players, as an example, as Bobhv Rousseau," Abel said. Rousseau, a former star with the perennial champion Montreal Canadiens, but now laboring with the New York Rangers, is 36 and considered "over the hill." Rousseau is not expected to be protected by the Rangers in the regular NHL draft involving all players on the rosters of each team. Each team in the NHL will be permitted to protect only 15 players, both major and minor, in the expansion draft. THE HOTTEST team in the NHL today, Boston, may have as many as 40 to 50 players on its roster, but will be able to protect only 15 when it gets down to the nitty gritty of the draft. A T THE EASIER WAY OF LIFE.. AT AN EASIER KIND OF PRICE: $29,250 . Parked Cars Are at Issue AN EASIER WAY OF LIFE IS BUILT-IN TO YOUR VILLA ENCANTADA TOWNHOME EASIER LAWN CARE... EASIER MAINTENANCE because it's done for you. , . . because it's done EASIER RELAXATION for you. . . because the pool, saun-a, clubhouse & exercise rooms are just a stroll from your patio, because you own, build equity, enjoy tax breaks. EASIER PAYMENTS In these days of crisis and crunch, isn't it nice that you can make something easier? Some drivers went to the other track and others just didn't build cars anymore. "I PAID $30,400 rent over the two years 1972 and '73, but Demaree and Holland didn't do a thing to improve the track or the premises. I did all the Hack grading and maintained the premises with my money." Crosby told the Journal that the sprint car drivers at Speedway Park had signed a contract not to race for any other association besides the New Mexico Motor Racing Assn. He said the agreement stipulated the sprint car racers would not race for any track or group within a 50 mile radius of Albuquerque. CROSBY SAID he had no such agreement with the stock car or motorcycle racers. When Villa and Shoudt purchased the leasehold interests to Speedway Park, Crosby offered his services to the new group as a consultant. Crosby said he asked for no pay as a consultant, but that neither Villa or Shoudt have contacted him for any advice before or during the present controversy. Dodders Sign Mcsscrsmith LOS ANGELES (AP) -Pitcher Andy Messersmith has signed his 1974 contract the Los Angeles Dodgers announced, leaving the National League baseball team with five unsigned players. . The Dodgers, who depart for their Vero Beach, Fla. spring training camp Tuesday, have not signed pitchers Don Sutton and Al Downing, catcher Joe Ferguson who was the team's leading hitter last year, and outfielder Von Joshua. Relief pitcher Mike Marshall, acquired from Montreal, has agreed to terms but has not signed. Former Speedway Park manager Frank Crosby says stock car drivers at the Heights track have wanted to be able to race at Albuquerque Raceway for the past four years. "Now the Speedway drivers have a chance to race at the other track and they won't do it," says Crosby. "It's hard for me to understand." Members of the Speedway Park Stock Car Assn. voted earlier this week to "park their cars" until they can reach agreement with Charlie Villa and Dick Shoudt, the new leaseholders at Speedway Park and Albuquerque Race w a y . T h e R a c e w a y stock car group is scheduled to vote on a similar parked car position at a meeting Mondav. CROSBY, WHO is highly respected in the racing profession, managed Speedway Park for 19 years. "I can say that for several years since the other track (Albuquerque Raceway) was built, the Speedway Park drivers went doi n there to compete, even th 'iigh I wanted them to stay. I don't understand what the big argument is "Albuquerque car support only one track This town isn't that big. One track is. enough, like one baseball team, the Dukes, orone ice hockey team, the Six Guns " CROSBYSAIDheleft the racing business here because of "harassment" from his landlords at Speedway Park, Rowena Demaree and Joseph Holland. "Their harassment did more to hurt racing than help it," said Crosby "They spread rumors that weren't true. Things like I owed them certain fees. When I threatened to take them to court, they backed off. "But their actions hurt racing in Albuquerque V .It.. tnt.inl.idd jV Aaulcmy c I ft o Moniymncry 4 e C amli'lurm An easy drive to Academy Blvd. NE between San Mateo & Wyoming. 5 exciting furnished models: 1-411 Open 1 1-7 Sunday - Friday, 10-6 Sat. 821-3900 VILLA ENCANTADA L9- WOOD; TO.

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