At Sunday’s AHL Board of Governors meeting in upstate New York, a vote was taken to finalize the plan to create an AHL West division (a concept first reported on by MayorsManor last spring). All parties were bound to silence regarding the closed door discussion by league president Dave Andrews. However, we have learned that relocation vote, involving five AHL clubs moving to California, was approved and the league’s full plan is expected to be announced at a press conference held in San Jose this Thursday.
Then, several NHL teams are expected to announce more detailed plans for their affiliates the following day. Specific to the Kings and their AHL affiliate Monarchs, a press conference will he held in Manchester on Friday afternoon. Luc Robitaille, LA’s President of Business Operations, Darren Abbott, President and Governor of the Monarchs, and ECHL officials are scheduled to attend the festivities. MayorsManor will be on hand for the press conference, providing live coverage of the announcement.
As we reported last month, the AHL West plan not only calls for the Kings to house their AHL affiliate in Ontario, Calif. beginning this October, but also includes their ECHL affiliate relocating to Manchester. The Manchester Monarchs and Ontario Reign are expected to keep their respective names after the move.
In addition to the Kings, the Anaheim Ducks (San Diego), San Jose Sharks (San Jose), Calgary Flames (Stockton), and Edmonton Oilers (Bakersfield) are also part of the American League’s California invasion. Edmonton Sun columnist Terry Jones tweeted on Monday that the Condors would be keeping their name but adopt Oilers colors.
[Jan. 28 updates]
1. The San Jose Sharks sent our a press release this afternoon to announce the above mentioned unveiling of the AHL West, scheduled to take place at the SAP Center on Thursday at 12:30pm PST. In attendance will be: David Andrews (President and Chief Executive Officer – American Hockey League), Bill Daly (Deputy Commissioner – National Hockey League), Michael Schulman (Chief Executive Officer – Anaheim Ducks), Bob Murray (Executive Vice President and General Manager – Anaheim Ducks), Brad Treliving (General Manager – Calgary Flames), Kevin Lowe (Vice Chair, Oilers Entertainment Group – Edmonton Oilers), Luc Robitaille (President, Business Operations – Los Angeles Kings), John Tortora (Chief Operating Officer – San Jose Sharks), and Doug Wilson (General Manager – San Jose Sharks). The press conference will be steamed live on sjsharks.com, theahl.com and the other participating NHL team’s websites.
2. Edmonton’s Kevin Lowe will be holding a follow-up media teleconference at 2:30 pm PT to discuss specific topics about the Oilers putting their AHL team in Bakersfield. Calif. Anaheim GM Bob Murray will hold a similar follow-up media call at 2pm PST to discuss the Ducks plans for San Diego.
3. Calgary is expected to announce their plans at a Friday press conference, per a report here.
John Hoven has been following this ongoing story for several years now. If you’ve missed any of the previous AHL West-related articles on MayorsManor, there are a myriad of additional details in the stories linked below.
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