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Falcons announce affiliation, lease extensions

The Springfield Falcons, proud members of the American Hockey League, announced today that they have agreed on a multi-year extension with both their National Hockey League partner the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority.

“As an owner, I am very optimistic about the potential of the Springfield Falcons and I am happy to announce this two-year extension here in Springfield,” said Falcons Majority Owner, Charlie Pompea. “We are hoping to partner with the community in making this your team. Obviously like the fans, I am disappointed in our first half results and do hope that the string of injuries that has affected our results on the ice will conclude. We need fans in the stands and I look forward to a much better second half. I would like to thank our many corporate supporters and loyal fans. I look forward to our mutual success both on and off the ice and I can’t wait to hear Shake Rattle and Roll after more wins at The Nest.”

The Falcons have played all of their home games in the heart of downtown Springfield since their inception into the AHL in 1994 starting with the Springfield Civic Center, which upon completion of renovations at the start of the 2005-06 season, was renamed the MassMutual Center. The Falcons own the AHL’s all-time record for longest home undefeated/points streak at 24 games starting on February 8, 1997 and concluding on November 14, 1997.

“The Springfield Falcons are a key partner with us in providing affordable, family entertainment in downtown Springfield,” said James E Rooney, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority. “We are pleased to have reached agreement in principle to extend our current lease with them for two additional years with two option years.”

The Falcons have been affiliated with the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets since the start of the 2010-11 campaign. Springfield matched their highest win total in the last nine seasons while with Columbus in 2010-11. Springfield has been home to current Blue Jackets players: John Moore, David Savard and Grant Clitsome over the last two seasons. The Falcons currently have 10 players on their current roster who have spent time in Columbus over the last two years including: Nick Holden, Matt Calvert, Alexandre Giroux, Cam Atkinson, Maksim Mayorov, Tomas Kubalik, Cody Bass, Dane Byers, Allen York and Mark Dekanich.

“The Columbus Blue Jackets are very excited to extend our affiliation with Springfield for another two seasons,” said Blue Jackets General Manager Scott Howson. “The Falcons, led by Bruce Landon and Mr. Charlie Pompea, have been first class to deal with the last two seasons. We believe Springfield is a tremendous hockey environment as well as community for our players to continue their development. We couldn’t be happier with this announcement.”

Since 1994, the Falcons have brought enjoyment to growing numbers of fans throughout Western Massachusetts and Northern Connecticut. The Falcons are currently in their 18th American Hockey League season.

“We would like to thank Jim Rooney and Ken Sinkiewicz from the MCCA for their cooperation in the lease negotiations,” said Falcons President and General Manager Bruce Landon. “Without the lease extension we could not work towards extending our contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets. I would also like to thank Scott Howson and Chris MacFarland from the Blue Jackets, for working with us to extend the affiliation. Charlie Pompea and I both felt that it was important we showed some stability and continuity with our NHL partner. Due to a string of serious injuries we have not been able to put on the ice the team that we all envisioned when we started the season. However, hopefully we can have a strong second half both on the ice and at the box office.”

Ticket packages for the 2011-12 season remain on sale and can be purchased by calling the Falcons Office at 413-739-GOAL. The Falcons offer a variety of flexible ticket options including: full season plans, 22-game packages, 14-game plans and 7-game packages. Each package includes flexible payment plans and exclusive invites to special events held throughout the season. Individual game tickets are on sale at the MassMutual Center Box Office and through