Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League governors are slated to meet in Sudbury on the weekend and one of the items on the agenda concerns the Mattawa Blackhawks, formerly the North Bay Trappers.
This is the first full season for the NOJHL in Mattawa following a trial run of games late in the 2013-2014 season.
The Blackhawks have played just one home game at Mike Rodden Arena in Mattawa thus far this season and drew a respectable crowd that was reported at 387.
For the 2014-2015 season, Mattawa has played eight games thus far and is still looking for its first win.
But it’s not Mattawa’s 0-8 record that has it on the NOJHL agenda.
Rather, it’s the off-ice state of the Mattawa franchise that is reportedly going to be discussed.
To be sure, Mattawa owner David Beauchamp, who has yet to celebrate his 30th birthday, is finding out what it is like to own a team in the NOJHL.
Young Beauchamp got into the NOJHL as an owner in North Bay in 2013-2014 and was granted approval to move his franchise to Mattawa for 2014-2015.
Those who know Beauchamp are saying that he has worked hard to pay off debt that was incurred in 2013-2014 when the NOJHL made a big mistake in thinking that North Bay could still be a viable franchise even with the return of the Ontario Hockey League to the Gateway City.
Thus, Beauchamp was allowed to pack up and leave North Bay for nearby Mattawa, a small town of a few thousand residents.
As owner of the Blackhawks, Beauchamp has thrown himself head first into the operation of the franchise though those close to him say he has tried to do too much on his own, from hockey operations to marketing to the little things in between.
Do the Blackhawks have debt and are they behind in their league fees? Sure they are.
But I doubt that Mattawa is the only NOJHL team that is in some financial strain.
To be sure, one would like to take a look at the financials of other teams in the NOJHL, say the more-established Abitibi Eskimos and Blind River Beavers, for example.
I am not sure why Mattawa is being singled out by the NOJHL as it pries into the finances of the franchise and its owner.
Perhaps we will learn more in the days ahead.
There are two sides to most stories and the facts are usually somewhere in the middle, depending on the factions involved.