Enter the AHL

And exit the CHL:

Oklahoma City is set to begin negotiations to bring an American Hockey League franchise to town for the 2010-2011 season. But there won’t be pro hockey here next season.

The Oklahoma City Blazers have suspended operations after failing to renew their lease with Oklahoma City to play in the Ford Center or Cox Center, a team official said Thursday.

The decision comes as Oklahoma City officials have filed paperwork clearing the way to start negotiations with “a prospective AHL franchise afflilated with Express Sports,” according to city documents.

So basically Express Sports, which owned the Blazers, is departing the CHL and moving up to the AHL. By the sheerest of coincidences:

The Edmonton Oilers of the NHL own a dormant AHL franchise and there have been discussions in recent month about relocating that team to Oklahoma City.

So they sell a piece of the franchise to Express, and after a one-year period of mourning, we have the Blazers, or a reasonable facsimile thereof, back again, playing at a higher level.

(Via Don Mecoy.)


  1. Closet Atheist »

    2 July 2009 · 4:04 pm

    Guess I better get a Blazers jersey while I still can.

  2. Air »

    2 July 2009 · 9:20 pm

    Having returned to Oklahoma from Houston where I watched many AHL games, I went to a CHL game last year and was reminded how awful the CHL’s quality of play is. I look forward to better quality hockey.

  3. CT »

    3 July 2009 · 9:56 am

    You know I’m secretly hoping for the OKC AHLers to eventually outdraw the NBA team in attendance…

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