The sport of ice hockey has been a beloved pastime in North America for over a century. And while the National Hockey League (NHL) may be the most prominent and well-known professional league, there are also a number of minor hockey leagues that have their own dedicated fan bases and intense rivalries.
One such league is the North American Hockey League (HL), a Tier II junior ice hockey league consisting of teams from the United States and Canada. In this league, the New Jersey Titans have been a prominent team, with a strong history of success and a passionate fan base.
In this article, we will take a trip down memory lane and revisit some of the New Jersey Titans’ most important matchups, including their biggest rivals and historic games. From heated on-ice battles to memorable playoff runs, we will explore the rich history of this New Jersey hockey team from a fan’s perspective.
Rivalries That Ignite Passion
Every passionate sports fan knows that rivalries are an essential part of the game. They add intrigue and excitement to any matchup, turning a regular season game into a must-see event. For the Titans, one of their most heated rivalries was with the Philadelphia Revolution.
The Titans and the Revolution both joined the HL in 2015 and quickly became division rivals. They regularly battled for the top spot in the East Division and their matchups were always intense and hard-fought. The two teams faced each other a total of 20 times in the regular season from 2015 to 2019, with the Titans holding a slight edge in the overall record.
Perhaps the most memorable game between these two rivals came in the 2016-2017 season when the Titans swept the Revolution in the playoffs, advancing to the next round. It was a defining moment for the Titans, who solidified their dominance over their divisional rivals.
Another noteworthy rivalry for the Titans was with the Johnstown Tomahawks. This rivalry was fueled by geographic proximity, as both teams were based in the state of Pennsylvania. The two teams met in the playoffs three consecutive times from 2015 to 2017, with the Titans coming out on top in two of those series.
Notable Games and Playoffs Runs
While rivalries may add an extra level of excitement to regular season games, it’s during the playoffs that teams truly cement their place in history. And the New Jersey Titans have had their fair share of memorable playoff runs.
In the 2015-2016 season, the Titans made their first-ever playoff appearance as a new team in the league. Despite making it to the playoffs as a lower-seeded team, the Titans shocked the hockey world by beating the top-ranked Aston Rebels in the first round and advancing to the division finals. Although they ultimately fell short in that series, it was a remarkable run for a first-year team.
But the Titans’ most successful playoff run came in the 2017-2018 season, where they made it all the way to the Robertson Cup Finals. Led by standout players like Hunter Alden and Ryan Wheeler, the Titans defeated the top-ranked Northeast Generals and the Philadelphia Rebels before ultimately falling to the Shreveport Mudbugs in the final series.
This memorable playoff run showcased the Titans’ incredible strength and determination, and further cemented their reputation as a formidable team in the HL.
Remembering the Legends
No team is complete without its legends, and the New Jersey Titans have had their fair share of players who have left a lasting impact on the organization and its fans.
One of the most iconic players in Titans history is forward Nick Boyagian, who spent three seasons with the team from 2015 to 2018. Boyagian was a prolific goal scorer, finishing his Titans career with 76 goals and 147 points, ranking him second on the team’s all-time scoring list.
Another notable player is forward Jordan Kaplan, who spent four seasons with the Titans from 2015 to 2019. Kaplan was an integral part of the Titans’ historic 2017-2018 playoff run, leading the team with 63 points in 59 regular season games.
These are just a few of the many players who have left their mark on the Titans organization, and their contributions will never be forgotten by the team and its fans.
With a rich history of heated rivalries, memorable games, and legendary players, the New Jersey Titans have solidified their place in the hearts of their fans and the HL community. From their playoff runs to their iconic players, the Titans have given hockey fans countless moments to cheer and remember.
As the Titans continue to make their mark in the league, their passionate fan base will undoubtedly continue to support and cheer them on through every game and every rivalry. For the Titans, the future is bright, and their legacy will continue to grow as they add new chapters to their already storied history.