BOSSIER CITY, LA — The Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs of the Central Hockey League have announced that play-by-play broadcaster Steve Mears will be leaving the team after serving as the Director of Media Relations and Broadcasting for the past four seasons.  Mears has accepted a position to be the radio play-by-play broadcaster for the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League. 

 The Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native joined the Mudbugs in 2002 after spending three seasons as the broadcaster for the Bowling Green State University Falcons in Bowling Green, Ohio.  In his four seasons in Bossier-Shreveport, he broadcast nearly 300 games including the 2004 and 2006 President's Cup Finals.  In 2005, Mears was selected as the "CHL Broadcaster of the Year."
"It's been an honor to be a part of the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs organization for four years," said Mears.  "This is truly a dream of mine to work in the NHL and it would not be possible without all of the great support from the Mudbugs family.  I would like to thank our owners John Madden and Rob Walker, General Manager Jason Rent, Head Coach Scott Muscutt, and the entire staff for treating me so well since I arrived in 2002.  Most importantly, the Mudbugs fans have been so supportive of me and this team and I would like to thank all of them."
Mears, 26, will make his NHL broadcasting debut on October 5th when the Islanders visit the Phoenix Coyotes.  He will remain with the Mudbugs for the next three weeks before moving to New York to begin his new position.  The search for the Mudbugs' new play-by-play voice will begin immediately.
"When your goal in life is to do a job where there are only 30 positions available in the world, it would probably be normal to carry some doubt about whether that goal is attainable," said Mudbugs General Manager Jason Rent.  "But the people involved with this franchise never doubted he would be in the NHL one day.  Steve will be truly missed by everyone here in Bossier-Shreveport, but I know the New York Islanders definitely gained some fans from the South today."  
The Mudbugs are currently preparing for their 10th anniversary season, which will begin in October and will feature the 2007 Central Hockey League All-Star Game at the CenturyTel Center on January 17, 2007.  Season ticket packages and corporate partnerships are currently available by calling 318-752-BUGS or by visiting

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