They came into the league just 13 years ago proudly boasting they were the only hockey team in the world to use the name “Battalion”, their olive green army inspired uniforms reminded many fans in attendance of changing a baby’s diaper. Yup, they sure were ugly, but they were unique, and now… they’re gone.
Well, at the end of this season anyways, and they’re probably keeping the name.
The Brampton Battalion announced yesterday that due to a failure to come to an agreement with the city on a new lease for their home arena they’re packing up their foot lockers and heading up to Northern Ontario to bring junior hockey back to an area that just lost their team ten years ago.
North Bay, Ontario is the lucky new landing spot for the 2009 OHL Eastern Conference Champions. North Bay approved a $14 million upgrade to the aging North Bay Memorial Gardens which was enough to sway the Battalion up north.
The mayor of North Bay made references to the city’s military ties in his statement – a pretty good sign that the Battalion name is sticking around. An article up on SudburyWolves.com also stated that the team would be known as the “North Bay Battalion”
The $14 million arena upgrades deal is courtesy a loan from the Battalion themselves, interest-free, the deal is also contingent on selling 2000 season tickets, a fairly lofty goal for the small town of only 52,000 residents.