Breaking News
More () »

Former hotel renovation transforms ice hockey in Luzerne County

A big renovation of a former hotel is changing the game when it comes to ice hockey in Luzerne County.

LUZERNE COUNTY, Pa. — The players are back hitting the ice at Revolution Ice Centre in Luzerne County as the training for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights NCDC League is underway.

Over 100 players have 10 days to earn their spot on the 23-man roster and the schedule is no joke.

"We get out on the ice twice a day, we're in the gym. These guys are putting in the work and it's huge. It's paramount to be able to get them to the level of elite status that we want to get our guys to," said Terry Watt, the Knights' head coach.

The goal is to grow their skills and get these players to advance to the college level.

But that growth happens on and off the ice and even at home.

"We get up in the morning, we eat together, we come to the rink, we train together, we go home, we do school together, we eat dinner together; it's a big family here," Watt said.

The players just moved into their new space. Revolution has completely transformed the old Howard Johnson Hotel on Route 315 in Pittston Township into dorms.

"Having a central location only a mile away from the rink is huge for recruiting and bringing in the top talent from around the world," Watt said.

This allows them to host players from as far as Russia and Japan.

Chance Uzzell came from Atlanta, Georgia.

"A little nervous at first, but once we were moved in, saw all the boys, got to meet everyone, it was amazing. We clicked right away," Uzzell said.

Defensemen Sean Caraman drove 14 hours for his second year with the team. He says the dorms are more than just a place to call home.

"It starts in the dorms when you're living with guys every day. There's so many ups and downs, but you grow through everything, and the guys take care of each other, and it translates on the ice," Caraman said.

Changing the game both on and off the ice, Revolution hopes to remodel the second floor of the hotel to bring even more players next year.

Check out WNEP's YouTube channel. 

Before You Leave, Check This Out