The ECHL has announced that the Adirondack Thunder have been purchased by the Adirondack Civic Center Coalition. The Coalition will assume control of the franchise from its NHL affiliate, the Calgary Flames.
It has yet to be officially determined if the Flames will remain the parent club of the Thunder, according to The Saratogian.
The ECHL Board of Governors unanimously approved the sale this month, providing Coalition representatives with a seat on the ECHL Board.
“We are grateful for the support we have received from the community over the past three seasons and we wish the Coalition all the best as they become new members of the ECHL,” Adirondack Thunder president Brian Petrovek said. “What a wonderful way to celebrate the 35th anniversary of professional hockey in the region.”
“We have been impressed with the passion and commitment by the new ownership group,” ECHL commissioner Brian McKenna said. “They are doing this for all of the right reasons. Having a professional team and vibrant arena will enhance entertainment options and add to the quality of life in the entire region.”
“Owning the Adirondack Thunder allows us to control our own destiny, and focus on the long-term success of hockey and the Civic Center,” said Daniel J. Burke, president of the Coalition. “Since the Adirondack Red Wings left in 1999, the community has not had a long-term commitment from a professional hockey organization. That changes today.”
The Adirondack Civic Center Coalition is launching a “Keep Hockey Here” fundraising campaign to solicit the additional funds necessary for a successful team ownership. The Coalition has already raised $200,000 of the $1 million campaign goal, including contributions from Coalition members.
“We’re ready to work with the community to make this team a long-term success in Glens Falls and to keep hockey here,” Burke said. “Our members have stepped up, and we know our neighbors will be right behind us in supporting this effort. Together, we will ensure vibrant winter nights in downtown Glens Falls and a successful Civic Center for decades to come.”
The Adirondack Civic Center Coalition is a non-profit group of local business and community volunteer leaders who manage the Glens Falls Civic Center. The purchase of the team was approved by the ECHL Board of Governors last week, and the Coalition has established a hockey board of managers with area hockey experts to ensure its success. The volunteer management team is comprised of Glenn Merkosky and Greg Joly, two former professional hockey players, as well as Kevin Mahoney and retired State Supreme Court Justice David Krogmann, and Coalition members Ed Moore, Claude Loiselle (also a former professional hockey player), Elisabeth Mahoney and George Ferone.
Any profits generated by the team will be used in support of the team and the Civic Center. None of the Coalition members or hockey board of managers will receive any profits.