OHL Approves Plymouth, Sarnia Sales
The Plymouth Whalers were sold to IMS Hockey Corp in mid-January with the intention of moving the team to Flint, Michigan in 2015-2016. The OHL approved the sale and move, which will see the new Flint franchise play at Perani Arena, Monday at their board of governors meeting in Toronto.
At the same time, the OHL board also approved the sale of the Sarnia Sting, to former NHLer Derian Hatcher, and current NHL player David Legwand.
Chatham, Ontario had originally been targeted as a potential relocation site for the Plymouth Whalers, but talks with the OHL club and now former owner Peter Karmanos stalled due to Chatham-Kent’s inability to plan for, and approve the construction of an OHL suitable arena.
Flint had originally targeted a USHL team, but when talks with Chatham slowed, Flint’s ownership group switched gears and began targeting the OHL.
Since the decision regarding the Whalers came down, Chatham-Kent’s administration has directed staff and council to again look at the feasibility of building an OHL size arena. Discussions regarding a new arena in Chatham will take place after budget deliberations are completed.