The Blaze and the Rivermen will join a new rivalry and a new league for next season. (Zach Dietmeier/WJBC)
By WJBC staff
HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. - The Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) announced its Board of Governors has unanimously approved the Bloomington Blaze and Peoria Rivermen to join the league for the 2013-2014 season.
The teams will be owned and operated by Illinois Pro Sports, LLC, whose members have extensive experience at all levels of professional hockey.
Both cities will hold official press conferences on Wednesday, May 22. The Peoria announcement will take place at 10:00 am at the Peoria Civic Center Great Hall, with the Bloomington presser to follow at the US Cellular Coliseum Bud Light Lounge at 2:00 pm.
“We are pleased that the SPHL Board of Governors unanimously approved both Peoria and Bloomington markets as new members of the SPHL,” said Illinois Pro Sports partner Bruce Saurs. “This is a new era for professional hockey in Central Illinois and we look forward to carrying on the rich tradition fans have come to enjoy over the years.”
“We are excited to welcome Bloomington and Peoria into the league,” added SPHL President Jim Combs. “The addition of two teams in the Midwest opens up a new range of opportunities for the SPHL.”