American Hockey League President and CEO David Andrews announced today that the league’s Board of Governors has unanimously approved the sale of the Rochester Americans franchise from Arrow Express Sports to the Buffalo Sabres.
The Sabres will return to Rochester as the Americans’ National Hockey League affiliate beginning with the 2011-12 season.
“We are pleased to welcome Terry Pegula and the Buffalo Sabres as owners in the American Hockey League,” said Andrews. “The Rochester Americans and Buffalo Sabres have a rich history together, and reuniting these two outstanding franchises is great news for hockey fans in western New York.”
The Rochester Americans, who enjoyed a 29-year affiliation with the Sabres from 1979-2008, are the second-oldest team in the American Hockey League, set to begin their 56th season in 2011-12. The Americans appeared in nine Calder Cup Finals while affiliated with Buffalo and won three Calder Cup championships (1983, 1987, 1996) during that time.
Having recently completed its historic 75th anniversary season, the American Hockey League continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. More than 87 percent of all players competing in the NHL are AHL graduates, and through the years the American Hockey League has been home to more than 100 honored members of the Hockey Hall of Fame.