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Broadcasters Announced For ECHL All-Star Classic

Monday, February 1st
Broadcasters Announced For ECHL All-Star Classic

PRINCETON, N.J. - The ECHL on Thursday announced the broadcasters for the 2020 Warrior/ECHL All-Star Classic presented by Toyota, to be hosted by the Wichita Thunder on Wednesday, Jan. 22 at 7 p.m. CT at INTRUST Bank Arena and telecast LIVE in the United States on NHL Network.

Tommy Daniels of the Allen Americans will provide play-by-play of the event and Jason Mals of the Wichita Thunder will serve as rinkside reporter while former New York Rangers General Manager and ECHL team owner Neil Smith, will serve as the color commentator. Local channel listings are available at NHLNetwork.com.

Following the format established last season, the Warrior/ECHL All-Star Classic presented by Toyota will feature a 3-on-3 tournament with four teams competing for the top spot. The host Wichita Thunder will make up two of the four teams and face-off against the other two teams made up of All-Star players from the Eastern and Western Conference. These four teams will compete in a 3-on-3 tournament with rally scoring in order to crown a winner. The 2020 Kansas Star Casino/ECHL All-Star Skills Competition will take place in between rounds of the tournament, with results counting towards the cumulative score.

Daniels joined the Americans in their inaugural season of 2009-10, serving as the team's first broadcaster in the Central Hockey League. In addition to being the play by play voice of the team, he is the Vice President of Broadcasting & Media Relations for the Americans. He was the radio voice of the Texas Tornado of the North American Hockey League for two seasons, from 2006-08. He spent many years in Dallas radio as a talk show host and sports anchor at Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket, where he also was a part of the Dallas Stars postgame show. He was co-host of the TNT Morning Show at Fox Sports Radio 1190 in Dallas from 2002-2005, where he also hosted the Dallas Stars postgame show. Tommy was the MC of the Red Carpet Event during the NHL All Star Game in Dallas in 2007. He has also worked at KDGE The Edge, where he was Sports Director and Assistant Program Director. Daniels spent time as an on air personality at 106.1 KISS FM, MIX 102.9, and 93.3 FM in Dallas. Daniels was voted Best Broadcaster in the Central Hockey League for three consecutive seasons from 2011-14 in the CHL's Best of the Best Awards. He served as the broadcaster for the CHL All-Star Game in 2012 and named CHL Media Executive of the Year in 2013-14 and was named ECHL Broadcaster of the Year in 2015-16.

A native of Buffalo Grove, Illinois, Mals graduated from Penn State University in 2002. After spending one season with the Billings Bulls of the North American Hockey League, he came to Wichita in 2004 as a ticket sales associate and play-by-play voice of the Thunder. In 2007, Mals joined Steckline Communications, where he did sales and radio of high school sports for four years. He hosted 'The Press Box,' an afternoon talk show from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. with the likes of Brad Streeter and Paul Savage. In 2011, Jason re-joined the Thunder and became the Director of Communications. He was the recipient of the 2012-13 Central Hockey League Communications Director of the Year and also received the 2013-14 Central Hockey League Spirit Award, which was presented to a staff member who showed passion and dedication to the league. He was also named as a runner-up for the Broadcaster of the Year that same season.

A longtime NHL executive, Smith was the general manager of the 1994 Stanley Cup champion New York Rangers. The Rangers' championship was their first in 54 years, led by captain Mark Messier, who Smith acquired in 1991 from the Edmonton Oilers. In addition, he has previously served as an analyst on NHL Network, and most recently was as a hockey analyst for Sportsnet. Smith also has had extensive involvement with the ECHL, serving as owner and governor of the Johnstown Chiefs and Greenville Road Warriors for nine seasons.

The 13th class of the ECHL Hall of Fame will be officially inducted at a banquet, presented by BFL CANADA and Sutton Special Risk, on Tuesday, January 21 at 5:30 p.m. at the Drury Plaza Hotel Broadview, the Official Host Hotel of the 2020 Warrior/ECHL All-Star Classic presented by Toyota.

For more information on the Warrior/ECHL All-Star Classic and to purchase tickets, please click here.

About the ECHL

Began in 1988-89 with five teams in four states, the ECHL has grown into a coast-to-coast league with 26 teams in 19 states and two Canadian provinces for its 32nd season in 2019-20. There have been 670 players who have gone on to play in the National Hockey League after starting their careers in the ECHL, including eight who have made their NHL debuts in the 2019-20 season. The ECHL has affiliations with 25 of the 31 NHL teams in 2019-20, marking the 23rd consecutive season that the league had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL. Further information on the ECHL is available on its website at ECHL.com.