The Colorado Eagles have established a winning culture like no other minor league hockey team. In their seven years in the Central Hockey League (from 2003 to 2011), the Eagles won six straight division championships and two Ray Miron President’s Cups. In their seven years in the Eastern Conference Hockey League (from 2011 to 2018), they won two conference championships and two Kelly Cups.
Their prolific efforts in both leagues earned them a promotion up to the AHL this season. With the move to the AHL, the Colorado Avalanche made the Eagles their elite minor league team. Eagles fans could now drive an hour down I-25 to watch their favorite players play for the Avalanche after being called up. This season, four Eagles players got the call up to the NHL.
The 2018-2019 Season
The Eagles posted a 36-27 record this year, despite having one of the youngest teams in all the AHL. They were one of the lowest scoring teams in the AHL, but they let up the seventh-least goals in the league.
In the playoffs, they were matched up with the Bakersfield Condors. The Condors are not only older but have also been in the AHL for two years longer. The Condors’ record was 42-21, giving them an eight-win advantage in the regular season.
The Eagles gave the Condors everything they had at the Budweiser Events Center. The Eagles put 13 shots on goal in the third period of game one to try and knot up the score at three. The puck wouldn’t negotiate the Condor defense. In game two, the Eagles waxed the Condors 4-1. The Condors’ one goal came in garbage time. The Eagles made sure they brought home at least one playoff win to the Budweiser Events Center.
They did fall short two more times in Bakersfield, with both games ending in 2-5 scores. That third loss of the series eliminated them from the playoffs.
For their first year in a new league, the Eagles showed out. They not only had an above-.500 record, but almost went to Bakersfield with a 2-0 series lead. Look out for this team, as their history would show that a championship may return to northern Colorado in the next couple of years.