Names Cincinnati Tigers
Operated 1981-82
League Central Hockey League
Home Arena Riverfront Coliseum
Championships None
1981-82 CHL 80 46 30 4 0 0 96 .600 2
The Cincinnati Tigers were members of the Central Hockey League during the 1981-82 season and were the primary farm club to the Toronto Maple Leafs. The club called Riverfront Coliseum their home and were led by future New Jersey Devils head coach Doug Carpenter. The Tigers can easily be called the most talented team that ever hit the ice in Cincinnati history. 

Cincinnati was an offensive machine, racking up 375 goals with a staggering 4.67 goals-per-game average. The 375 goals scored is still the most in a single season by any Cincinnati hockey club to date. Left wing Reg Thomas had 47 of the goals and center Bruce Boudreau had 42. Both Tigers totaled more then 100 points each. Had Bruce Boudreau not been away with the Maple Leafs, his final goal total would have been higher.  Forward Norm Aubin also missed action with the Tigers when he was called up to the parent club after 31 games. Aubin had scored 15 goals and was well on his way to racking up more. Had Boudreau and Aubin played the full season in Cincinnati, the Tigers most likely would have cleared the 400-goal mark by season's end.

Cincinnati also was the most dominate in the CHL on the power play. Boudreau, Thomas and Blight, coupled with defensemen Dave Shand and Greg Hotham were incredible on the power play. The Tigers connected on 39 percent of their power play chances. Had defenseman Greg Hotham not been traded to the Pittsburg Penguins after 46 games, the total would have been stronger.

Cincinnati may have scored plenty of goals but they also gave up plenty as well. The Tigers gave up a total of 340 goals to their opponents by season's end. The club saw a total of five different goaltenders over the course of the season. Goaltender Curt Ridley was assigned to Cincinnati by Toronto halfway through the season and was suppose to be the Tigers regular goaltender but Ridley was injured and never regained his form when he returned to the line up. He wound up only playing in a total of 22 games. Bob Parent turned out to be the Tigers' main goaltender despite being average at best. Parent played in a total of 65 games which still stands as the most games played in Cincinnati by any goaltender.

The other three Tigers goalies were Jiri Crha who came to Cincinnati on a conditioning assignment and only played in a couple of games.
Martin Magley who had been assigned to Cincinnati by Toronto to be a backup but never saw any ice time and Doug Dragasevich who played in only one single game.

Toronto gave Cincinnati a terrific team but regrettably support for this great Cincinnati sports gem was dismal at best. The Tigers seldom drew more than 1,500 fans a game and in some cases the club played in front of crowds in the hundreds. A handful of reasons can be to blame for the club failing.

The Tigers' rent at the Coliseum for one thing was high, which was tough on the club and pushed the Tigers to have high ticket prices. The club's annual rent rounded out to about $ 208,000. To add to the high ticket prices, parking fees and concession prices were steep also. Plus the exchange rate of currency between the U.S. and Canada was tough on the team. With 20% difference in money, it was much more expensive for a Canadian team to operate a minor league franchise in the U.S.

To make matters worse, coverage of the club in local papers was dismal at best. The small amount of fans that did follow the Tigers had to dig through the newspapers to find the smallest bit of coverage. The handful of articles that did find their way into the papers were buried beneath extensive coverage of the Cincinnati Bengals Super Bowl run.

The Tigers ended the season with a solid 46-30-4 record and finished one point behind the Salt Lake Golden Eagles in the division. However, the Tigers ended their brilliant run with a thud in the playoffs, losing to the Dallas Blackhawks 3 games to 1.

Despite head coach Doug Carpenter's claim at the beginning off the season that "This isn't a situation where we come in one season and then take off", that is exactly what happened. Despite the Maple Leafs promise to a three year affiliation, Toronto pulled the plug on the Tigers shortly after the season ended and moved its farm club to the St. Catharines Saint in the American Hockey League.
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