WKTV - After weeks of speculation the New Jersey Devils informed the Binghamton Devils that the AHL team will be relocated.
This first reported by WBNG.
Comets President, Robert Esche, files trademark for "Utica Devils" / WBNG
Over the last week, buzz surrounding the future of the Binghamton Devils began to circulate.
According to management of the Visions Federal Credit Union Veterans Memorial Arena, home to the Binghamton Devils, there had been a dispute between the Binghamton devils and their NHL parent club, the New Jersey Devils.
The current contract between the two ownership groups is for five years. This agreement ends at the conclusion of the 2021-2022 season.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Binghamton Devils are currently playing their home games in Newark, New Jersey.
What does this have to do with the Utica Comets? Confirmed suppositions of a trademark filed by Comets President, Robert Esche on April 5, 2021 for the “Utica Devils" were also reported. Binghamton officials say that they were surprised to see this trademark filed.
The Comets current contract – which was extended in 2018 - with the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks has an opt-out option following this season.
The future of the Binghamton Devils was still in question until Saturday afternoon, when Devils Executive Vice President of Operations, Tom Mitchell, said the New Jersey Devils informed him this week that the AHL team will be relocating.
The Vancouver Canucks released a statement to NEWSChannel 2 regarding their current affiliation with the Utica Comets:
"The Canucks and Comets have been in partnership since 2013.14 and continue to enjoy a great working relationship. While a formal decision on the future of the affiliation has not been reached, Vancouver and Utica will exercise due diligence and explore all options on the future of their partnership.”
We have reached out to Comets’ Esche for comment and are awaiting a response.
The Comets and Devils will meet for the second and final time this season on Wednesday, April 21.