Charlotte getting a new ice hockey team? | CLT Blog
Charlotte Checkers

Charlotte getting a new ice hockey team?

Posted on 22 Jan 2010 by James Willamor

Charlotte Checkers

Charlotte Checkers at Time Warner Cable Arena. Photo: James Willamor; view this photo on Flickr

Reports out of Raleigh indicate the Carolina Hurricane’s AHL farm club, the Albany River Rats, “have been sold and will move to Charlotte.” The Albany Times-Union names the buyer as Michael Kahn, who currently owns the Charlotte Checkers.

Charlotte is currently home to the ECHL Checkers, what is considered a second-tier (AA) minor league team. The AHL is the highest level (AAA) of minor league hockey in the U.S. and Canada, with NHL teams often sending player up or down from the majors. The River Rats are currently the AHL affiliate of Raleigh’s Carolina Hurricanes.

According to Canes Country,

There are several benefits to having an in-state affiliate: speedier call-ups to the Triangle; easier access for Raleigh-based team management — and Canes fans — to the team and players; and further growth of hockey in the South.

It is unclear whether the Charlotte’s ECHL franchise will fold, or be sold or moved. It is also unclear if the River Rats will be renamed to the Checkers or something else.

This news comes after an October Charlotte Business Journal article indicating that the Charlotte Checkers were interested in a possible new arena tied to a sports complex in Matthews.

The Checkers currently play in Time Warner Cable arena along with the Charlotte Bobcats.


  1. Jason 22 Jan 2010 at 1:53 PM

    They should move the Hurricanes to Charlotte.

  2. DeVoe41 23 Jan 2010 at 8:37 AM

    Ok so they want to move the River Rats down here and replace them with the Checkers? That doesn’t make to much sense. Why not move them down to join the Checkers. I don’t see why if they are trying to bring hockey to the south, they would want to ruin a perfectly good team that has been here longer then the “last place canes”. If you ask me I think the Checkers should stay and the River Rats can join them or have the Checkers move to the other Arena as it said they wanted to and the the AHL River Rats could play at TWC Arena. It would make more sense to do this as I don’t get to go to many Checkers games because the prices for everything is to high at TWC Arena.