The new commissioner of the BC Hockey League is visiting all 17 franchises, and his latest stop was in Vernon.
Chris Hebb has taken over from 15 year leader John Grisdale.
Hebb says he wants to learn more about the markets, and the business side of the league.
“We all see the hockey, and the fact is, the hockey isn’t a problem. It’s a great product on the ice, but we just have to do better on the marketing side and make this a real solvent league.”
Hebb is a White Rock resident, who previously was a broadcaster, and an executive with the Vancouver Canucks and Toronto Maple Leafs.
“We’re in 17 communities. We’ve expanded into the United States, and I would like to see the franchises become very successful and perhaps grow the league,” Hebb said in an interview with Beach Radio’s Graham Turnbull.
Hebb says 32 percent of NHL players today come through college hockey, which he says is partly due to leagues like the BCHL.
Hebb says the Vernon Vipers are one of the league’s top franchises for a reason.
“First of all, I heard lots of stories about Duncan Wray (long time team owner who passed away in January). This is an owner that was exemplary in this league, and the kind of owner we want. Passionate, cared about hockey and cared about the community,” says Hebb.
Hebb summed up his interview by saying BCHL franchises are all currently surviving — but he wants to see them thrive.
New BCHL Commissioner Chris Hebb visits Kal Tire Place (Graham Turnbull photo)