As hockey fans know, with the professional hockey seasons drawing to a close, that can only mean one thing. It’s time for teams to start rebranding, relocating and generally adjusting a few things when it comes to uniforms and their franchises. That said, I started the Gear Guru last season and will be continuing it through this offseason. So for those logo, graphic and uniform nerds like me, here is your one-stop shop for all your minor league hockey information this offseason.
- The 31st team for the 2018–19 AHL season will be the Colorado Eagles. AHL President and CEO David Andrews announced in October that the Colorado Eagles have been approved as an expansion franchise for the 2018-19 season.
- The Eagles join other recently added ECHL markets in the AHL such as Bakersfield, Charlotte, Ontario, and Stockton.
- With Colorado joining the AHL, they will become the primary affiliate of the Colorado Avalanche while the Blues then became the primary affiliate of the San Antonio Rampage.
- The Chicago Wolves will be celebrating their 25th anniversary this season. They’ve been wearing a neon green and black alternate jersey; it will be interesting to see if they stray from their classic maroon, yellow and black jerseys to celebrate the anniversary. That being said, look for the Wolves to don some sort of 25th-anniversary logo on their uniforms this season.
- The Belleville Senators have unveiled its secondary jersey logo for the 2018-19 AHL Season.
- From the team release, the new logo will recycle the inaugural season patch used last season as well as make a few changes. It will appear on the shoulders of jerseys for the 2018-19 season. “It features a stylised rendition of the City of Belleville logo embraced by the team’s name, stripes and color scheme.” – team release.
- The Texas Stars will be celebrating their 10th anniversary this season and have unveiled an anniversary logo to go along with the 2018-19 season.
- Fans who purchase a full-season or a pair of 24-game packages will receive a 10th-anniversary replica jersey for the season as part of the team’s celebration.
- The Quad City Mallards ceased operations after the 2017–18 season. The Mallards were the first of the teams added in the 2014 consolidation with the Central Hockey League to cease operations
- The Maine Mariners in Portland, Maine, were added as an expansion franchise after Comcast Spectacor purchased the franchise from the folded Alaska Aces. The Mariners will be the fifth team to replace a recently relocated AHL team, the Portland Pirates since 2015.
- The Mariners are expected to unveil jerseys this summer. Several concepts have been floating around. This one is my favorite from Scott Markiewicz @Concepts_SM
- The Newfoundland Growlers in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, were added, replacing the recently relocated St. John’s IceCaps and become the sixth ECHL team to replace an AHL team since 2015
- The Sin Bin’s Kristen Wooten and I gave a little background on the Growlers logo and colors
- The Allen Americans unveiled their 10th-anniversary logo this afternoon in front of a crowd at the Allen Event Center.
- According to the team website, “the team has many special events planned for the anniversary season, including the All-Decade Team which will be introduced later this summer.”
- The Kalamazoo Wings unveiled a 45th-anniversary logo for the 2018-19 season. It’s unknown if the logo will make any appearances on any uniforms or anything of that nature
- The SPHL will be 15 years old this season
- Anniversaries in the SPHL, Peoria – 5, Pensacola – 10, Knoxville, Huntsville, Fayetteville – 15
- There will be a quick return to pro hockey after the ECHL Quad City Mallards folded up shop. The SPHL announced that it will be expanding to Moline, IL, whose team will take to the ice as Quad City for the 2018-2019 season.
- The SPHL is holding a name the contest on the league website. Fans can submit their choice for the team name. Here’s hoping for the Quad City Wild Blueberries
- The ECHL owns the rights to the Quad City Mallards name so if the newest SPHL franchise wants to keep the name, they’ll have to make a deal with the ECHL to purchase the rights to the name.
Quad City Storm
- The SPHL and Owners John Dawson and Ryan Mosley revealed the name of the newest Southern Professional League franchise on June 21st at the newly named TaxSlayer Center in Moline. The team unveiled the name and logo as well team president and introduce Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Dave Pszenyczny.
- The league held a naming contest on the league website. Fans were able to submit their choice for the team name.
- The ECHL owns the rights to the Quad City Mallards name so if the newest SPHL franchise wanted to keep the name, they would have had to make a deal with the ECHL to purchase the rights to the name.
- One day after announcing the addition of the Quad City franchise to the Southern Professional Hockey League, the league has announced the Mississippi RiverKings will be suspending operations for the coming season.
- “The league is actively seeking new ownership in order to bring the team back for the 2019-2020 season,” said President Jim Combs in the league release.