“This is an unbelievable day for hockey in California, for the Anaheim Ducks organization and the city of San Diego” said Bob Murray, current general manager of the Ducks of the National Hockey League.
The Ducks will purchase the Norfolk Admirals American Hockey League (AHL) franchise and relocate it from Norfolk, Va. to San Diego.
Pro hockey is back in San Diego! We’re proud to welcome the @anaheimducks’ AHL team to our city. https://t.co/t5aQ20Ypo0 - Kevin Faulconer (@Kevin_Faulconer) January 30, 2015
The Ducks’ top farm team will join affiliates from the Los Angeles Kings (Ontario, Calif.), San Jose Sharks (San Jose, Calif.), Calgary Flames (Stockton, Calif.) and Edmonton Oilers (Bakersfield, Calif.) in the newly created AHL Pacific Division, as announced by the AHL yesterday.
That being said, our beach town is no stranger to ice hockey.
San Diego’s professional hockey tradition began in 1944-45 with the San Diego Skyhawks of the Pacific Coast Hockey League (PCHL), who won the PCHL title in 1948-49.
The San Diego Gulls of the West Coast Hockey League (WCHL) won titles in 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001 and 2003 (before folding in 2006).
The AHL league said full division alignments and schedule formats for the 2015-16 season will be determined by its Board of Governors in the months to come.
In the meantime, a “hockeyfest” has been scheduled for Feb. 22 at the new home of the team, Valley View Casino Center.
The event will include a chance for prospective season-ticket holders to select seats and for the team to unveil its new name and logo.