Mayhem players embrace experience in the ECHL
As is the case with minor league teams in any sports, if you play well you get called up. That's been a big problem that the Macon Mayhem have had to overcome this season. The team has had fourteen players loaned up to teams in the ECHL, and only seven have returned to the team so far. While some players say it might be tough to leave Macon and the home crowd, they all have the same goal of playing at the highest level. "I think I speak for everyone when I say we're not playing to be at this level, everyone wants to move up and play the highest level of hockey they can. For me it was exciting to get that opportunity, and when you go up you just kind of want to try and make the best of it and stay up as long as you can" said Jake Trask.
Even though the goal is to play hockey at the highlest level, team captain Daniel Gentzler says that having a great home crowd in Macon makes coming back down to the SPHL a whole lot easier. "It's awesome, it makes it easier coming down, back to a place like this. If I was going somewhere else maybe wouldn't be as happy getting released from your ECHL team. Being able to come back here to these fans, this organization it makes it an easier transition."
As for the coaches, they're tasked with filling the roster spots of loaned players and making sure the team doesn't lose any chemistry or energy when a player leaves and gets replaced. "It's tough, that's the nature of our business. Guys are coming up, are coming down. You gotta bring guys to help your team whether it's long term, short term. College guys are starting to come out, and it's part of the business we're involved in" said head coach Kevin Kerr.
It doesn't seem to matter who's on the roster right now though, the Mayhem are playing some of their best hockey of the season with less than a month to go. And seem primed to defned their President's Cup title in the playoffs this year.