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March 18, 2015

Portland Pirates sign new NHL affiliate

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The Portland Pirates announced on Wednesday that the Florida Panthers has become its new National Hockey League affiliate as part of a multi-year development deal.

The American Hockey League team said in its announcement that the deal will begin with the 2015-2016 season and run through the 2018-2019 season. The Pirates’ previous NHL affiliate was the Arizona Coyotes, an affiliation that began in 2011.

As part of the deal, the Panthers will provide the Pirates with players, coaches and hockey operations staff. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

“Portland is a vibrant city and hockey-rich market that will provide our prospects with an exceptional environment for growth and development,” Eric Joyce, who is transitioning as general manager to Portland from the Panthers’ current AHL team, the San Antonio Rampage, said in a prepared statement. “The Pirates roster will include our organization’s top prospects who will compete and play an exciting style of hockey for the fans of Portland.”

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