The Bakersfield Condors are members of the ECHL. The Bakersfield Condors are not members of the East Coast Hockey League.  Just want to clarify this for all members of the national hockey insiders who decided to dabble into the world of the “Premier AA Hockey League” last night.

If you missed it, allegedly, according to very good TSN writer/insider Darren Dreger and others, Mr. Universe himself Ilya Bryzgalov will sign with our funny looking friends in Las Vegas. Jerry Kuhn, the former Idaho netminder, stopped everything in sight two years ago. Bryz hasn’t exactly stopped much lately. The tweet:

And if true, this is getting played on the Rabobank Arena videoboard on Saturday, Nov. 9:

Good for them, but I have enough to worry about. By my count, it has been 186 days since the Condors 2012-13 campaign ended. That’s 4,464 hours. Or better yet 267,840 minutes.

It all comes to an end today though. Today marks the beginning of 2013-14. There is a new coaching staff, a new general manager, a new affiliate, new trainers, a new locker room, and a renewed sense of optimism around these parts.

Today marks the first day that all 37 (more on this later) players will be in one place together. They will go through meetings, fill out roughly 1,675 pages of paperwork, take headshots, meet the staff, eat together, get a physical, go through testing … You get the drift.

There are Canadians, Americans, Russians, Czechs, and a Swede all here. The youngest was born in 1992. The oldest was born in 1982. A couple guys are married like Brett Lutes, some brought their dogs like Wes Cunningham, and others drove cross country like Greg Burgdoerfer did from New York.

Out of this group (and some more help from Oklahoma City/Edmonton) there will be a team of 16 skaters, two goalies, and six scratches who will wear the most expensive jerseys in the ECHL.

It is a TON of work to make sure everything will run smoothly over the next two weeks. Meals had to be provided, practice times needed to be set up, immigration needed to be settled, flights needed to be booked, living arrangements needed to be made, and somehow it all (and so much more) got done.

Sometimes it is hard for us to look at the big picture when the work becomes such a grind. But, when we sit back and look at what is about to happen: this is going to be fun. As always we will have full coverage of pretty much everything over the next two weeks leading up to Opening Night on Condors.TV, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, our website, and more!

Hope to see you at the rink!

Until next time Condorstown…

Ryan Holt a.k.a. Holty, is the voice of the Condors and recently wrapped up year two in Condorstown. He is shocked this is his third training camp. Have a #HoltysBlog idea? Follow him on Twitter @BroadcastHolt or shoot him an email with ideas to rholt@bakersfieldcondors.com