One of the defining characteristics of Minor Sports Leagues is that they play to smaller crowds of fans. Minor-Leagues.com has compiled a series of posts that provides details of attendance figures.
The ECHL (Used to be known as the East Coast Hockey League) is a combined independent/affiliate professional hockey league founded in 1988. It operated initially in the eastern coast of the United States, expanding to the West and East during its years of growth. The cities the ECHL played in was not served by a NHL or their minor league affiliates. The ECHL is now considered to be a Double-A level of hockey, with most of its teams being affiliated with counterpart teams in both the NHL and AHL.
Below is the fan attendance for the entire league from 2006 to 2013.
|League||Sport||Season||# of Teams||Team Change||Games||Games Change||Total Attendance||TA Change||Average Attendance||AA Change||Source|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2005-06||25 (24 USA 1 CAN)||untracked||900||untracked||3,934,794||untracked||4,372||untracked||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2006-07||25 (24 USA 1 CAN)||0.00%||900||0.00%||3,752,804||-4.63%||4,170||-4.62%||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2007-08||25 (24 USA 1 CAN)||0.00%||900||0.00%||3,756,191||0.09%||4,173||0.07%||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2008-09||23 (22 USA 1 CAN)||-8.00%||779||-13.44%||3,317,017||-11.69%||4,258||2.04%||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2009-10||20 (19 USA 1 CAN)||-13.04%||720||-7.57%||3,229,463||-2.64%||4,485||5.34%||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2010-11||19 (18 USA 1 CAN)||-5.00%||684||-5.00%||2,967,752||-8.10%||4,339||-3.27%||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2011-12||20 USA||5.26%||720||5.26%||3,082,764||3.88%||4,282||-1.31%||Lennier|
|ECHL (AA)||Ice Hockey||2012-13||23 USA||10.00%||828||15.00%||3,917,598||27.08%||4,731||10.49%||Lennier|
The ECHL is populated mostly by Free Agents recruited from colleges, junior leagues, and other minor leagues, but each team can be expected to a have a few NHL drafted players refining their skills there. The primary focus of ECHL teams has slowly shifted away from team success towards more about player development.