Nfld. & Labrador

Hamilton Bulldogs moving to St. John's, IceCaps to Winnipeg

The Montreal Canadiens' American Hockey League affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs, will be moving to St. John's beginning next season, while the IceCaps move to Winnipeg.

Canadiens' AHL affiliate to start playing in N.L. next season

St. John's IceCaps CEO Danny Williams, left, and Chief Operating Officer Glenn Stanford pose with a Montreal Canadiens jersey at Mile One Centre in St. John's, after announcing the Canadiens' farm team will be coming to St. John's. (CBC)

The Montreal Canadiens' American Hockey League affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs, will be moving to St. John's beginning next season, as the IceCaps move to Winnipeg.

IceCaps president and CEO Danny Williams and Glenn Stanford, chief operating officer, made the announcement Thursday evening at Mile One Centre in St. John's.

"For me, personally, it's a great honour and indeed a pleasure for the second time in a decade to announce that Newfoundland and Labrador is going from a 'Hab-not' province to a 'Hab' province," Williams joked.

"We're here today, Glenn and I, to announce very proudly that Mile One will be the home for the next two years of the Montreal Canadiens' AHL farm team, formerly the Hamilton Bulldogs."

Rumours had been circulating that the Bulldogs would take the place of the NHL Jets' minor league club in St. John's.

Previous reports said there was a "strong chance" the Jets would be moving their AHL farm team to the MTS Centre, leaving some sports fans wondering about the future of professional hockey in St. John's.

Williams said the Canadiens' farm team will be in St. John's for at least the next two years.

"They're truly an iconic and a legendary club and organization, and I might dare to say that probably the greatest hockey franchise in the entire world," he said.

"For us to team up with them and to get the benefit of their organization having just dealt with an outstanding organization in Winnipeg and to be able to carry on from here and to again offer the fans in St. John's, and indeed all of Newfoundland and Labrador, professional hockey for at least two more years is truly a great privilege."

The name of the St. John's AHL team will remain the IceCaps, and new uniforms will be released in the next few months.

Williams added the IceCaps will continue the season in St. John's and still have to go through the playoffs.

Last year, the Jets announced a deal with the IceCaps that would see the team remain in St. John's for the 2015-16 season.

It's not yet known what the IceCaps will be known as when they move to Winnipeg. Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff said the team's name and branding will be released soon.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversationCreate account

Already have an account?