Long-time NOJHL exec joins CIHL

April 10, 2014

The reputable Dean Pauli, who has held management positions with teams in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League and Ontario Jr. Hockey League, has joined the new Canadian International Hockey League as its Vice President and Chairman of the Discipline Committee.

A top investigator with the Ontario Provincial Police, Pauli is a Sault Ste. Marie native who has resided in the North Bay area for a number of years.

CIHL founder and Espanola Rivermen owner Tim Clayden has a long association with Pauli.

“I have known Dean since the days that we started the North Bay Skyhawks in the NOJHL more than 10 years ago,” said Clayden. “Our friendship and working relationship carried over to the OJHL where we won a divisional championship with Port Hope in our first season together. Since then we have worked together with Trenton in the OJHL and back to the NOJHL with North Bay and Espanola.”

Clayden touched on the character of the veteran policeman.

“The man epitomizes integrity, trust and honesty,” Clayden continued. “Dean is fun to have around a hockey team, he has been the vice president of our teams for more than six years now and is a trusted scouting eye for junior hockey talent. He is the perfect person to be the CIHL’s vice president and chairman of our discipline committee as he is honest and understanding but stern. The man simply knows right from wrong.”

Pauli, from his end, has no doubt that the CIHL will be a success with Clayden at the helm with the new junior league set to begin play effective the 2014-2015 season.

“We were the unfortunate victims of the return of the Ontario Hockey League to North Bay this season but the proof that Tim is a proven hockey man was the transition to leave the North Bay Trappers to bring hockey back to the town of Espanola in a big way this season,” said Pauli.

“Imagine two years prior, someone telling you that a Junior A hockey team in Espanola would be a top contender and lead the NOJHL in attendance. I for one would have laughed. This is a credit to Tim. Yes, he put together a cast of characters that eased in the transition with the likes of (coach) Tom McCarthy and (general manager) Randy Blake among others but it was Tim’s doing. Tom and Randy are great guys and work hard, they have a similar work ethic to Tim and deserve a lot of credit as well for keeping the machine in Espanola running while under turbulent times within the NOJHL, with regards to the announcement that the team would be leaving the league at season’s end to play in the CIHL,” Pauli added.

“I have no doubt that the CIHL will get off the ground successfully and capture the attention of junior hockey fans quickly. Believe me when I say Tim leaves no stone unturned when applying it to hockey, which is his passion. This is the reason why I believe the CIHL will be a successful model for junior hockey for years to come. The vision of a junior hockey league without borders, run professionally and ethically, with the goal of putting student-athletes first is exciting,” Pauli continued.

Still, while excited to be joining the new CIHL, Pauli said he leaves the NOJHL with mixed emotions.

“While leaving the NOJHL has mixed emotions for me, I can say that I was proud to be involved with great people there, guys such as Chris Dawson, Hector Seguin, Ted Magee and Robert Mazzucca. I wish all the best to the league partners and the executive.”

What you think about “Long-time NOJHL exec joins CIHL”

  1. Gotta love it that the new League has a top cop from the OPP on board as their VP.
    By by Commish by by !!!!

  2. The only thing that’s not great about this article is the quote “Imagine two years prior, someone telling you that a Junior A hockey team in Espanola would be a top contender and lead the NOJHL in attendance. I for one would have laughed.”. Anyone going back a few years in the league would know that Espanola always filled the arena, even for some pretty bad hockey teams. This is in no way to discredit what the Rivermen have brought back to the community, and they have been amazing in the community outside of the hockey arena, but Espanola has always been a good hockey town with fans that were chomping at the bit to get back into the arena for junior hockey. And we will continue to jam the rink for our Rivermen next season and for every season to follow!

    1. Brian P. you are 100% wrong!! the last junior team left as fast as it came only a few years ago, because of lack of following. They only amassed 15 wins in their first season and 8 wins in their second season. I know this to be true because I bought the old coaches house and he left all the printed emails that he had, wondering why he didnt get paid once? The Espanola Kings were a terrible team only a few years ago. The Rivermen had to overcome the bad taste the Kings left in the mouth of the citizens! But kudos to TC and his talented group for turning that around and giving our community something to cheer about again!!!! Now he is giving us something else to cheer about! How exciting is this new league? I think we will have to build a larger arena to hold all the fans!!!

      hey Brian P. everything Bazooka tells you to write here is not always the truth!!! imo of course!!!

  3. Brian P:
    I have been part of the NOJHL for years and grew up in the Espanola region. Sorry, no, Espanola did not fill the arena. I remember attending many Eagle games in the early 1990s at the old arena and there was no one there. Sorry…

  4. To each their opinion. I am not formerly from the area, been here since ’94. I’m not taking the word of a bitter ex-coach (though it’s true the Kings were the only poor crowds I’ve seen, and that’s because they were a scam from the start. A lot more than just the coach were stiffed, and they did NO advertising, had NO presence in the community, most wouldn’t even know when a game was going on. I had season tickets.) The Screaming Eagles played in front of good crowds, while Rayside went to the national championship game playing in front of less than 100 a night. The Eagles from my time ’94 on played in front of good crowds as well, though they were never competitive. Was it 550 every night? No but it was far from the bottom of the league.

    1. Any reputable league that has been in Espanola has enjoyed playing in front of some of the best crowds in the NOJHA/NOJHL.

      Tim Clayden and company didn’t have the challenge of replacing the bitter taste left by the Espanola Kings, the challenge for them was to have a successful team in Espanola for the first time in years. It started with a name change, and it took off from there.

      To me, ehe Espanola Kings were a scam from the start and not many in the community wanted to support them. They didn’t have a season ticket fan base and they didn’t have a respected ownership group.

      Any other junior team, whether it was the Eagles, Screaming Eagles, or Rivermen, have always played in front of at least 400 fans a night…despite the crappy records those teams had.

      Clayden has been the first owner/operator to have credentials and a track record of success to run a team in Espanola.

      The other owners in Espanola were all terrible — in my opinion — and that’s the only reason Espanola lost their junior hockey teams…not because of a lack of fan support.

  5. Dean Paulli is a man of respect who I met a few times at GNML games at Countryside Arena. He was always looking to give the Northern boys a chance .. This is another loss for the NOJ as he goes to the CIHL.

  6. what an amazing addition to the CIHL!!! I think Dean is a great guy and I am super excited that he will be participating in the new league! He brings a wealth of experience and integrity to the table!! Congrats to Dean and the CIHL!!!

    On a different note I would like to thank you RR for running such a clean classy site. I recently experienced some of the others and I must say your site is miles and miles better than anything I’ve seen! I will continue to come here for my hockey news! You are the most trustworthy, reliable source for hockey in the north!!! Keep up the good work!

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