SPHL adds Evansville for 2016-17 season

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – Mayor Lloyd Winnecke announced today that Evansville will be the newest member of the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) with a brand new team for the 2016-17 season.

At the press event, Mayor Winnecke stated that, “Three years ago, hockey fans recorded the highest attendance in the city’s hockey history, while playing in the Central Hockey League (CHL) at the Ford Center. As the SPHL is the most comparable league, Evansville now has the opportunity to make professional hockey successful again for both the city and the team ownership.”

Mayor Winnecke was joined by local businessman and long-time hockey fan Mike Hall, who has entered into a partnership with VenuWorks to own a new franchise that will play in the Ford Center.

“As a local hockey fan, I am honored to play an integral part of the next chapter in Evansville’s hockey history. My family’s investment is a testament to my belief that the SPHL model works and will produce an entertaining and competitive hockey experience at the Ford Center,” remarked Mike Hall, new owner of the Evansville based SPHL team.

Both Mayor Winnecke and Mr. Hall were joined by Jim Combs, President of the SPHL who has visited Evansville several times over the past month.

“On behalf of the league’s Board of Governors, we are excited to welcome Evansville into the SPHL for the 2016-2017 season,” said Combs. “I would like to thank Mayor Winnecke, the city of Evansville, the Ford Center and especially Mike Hall for their commitment to the SPHL. We look forward to working with everyone involved to get this team off the ground and running for the loyal hockey fans of Evansville.”

Now in its 12th season, the SPHL is comprised of 11 members located throughout the southeastern and mid-western United States. Headquartered in Huntersville, North Carolina, the mission of the SPHL is to provide a quality entertainment product structured inside an economic model that is viable for small and mid-size markets and arenas.

The 2016-2017 SPHL season starts Friday, October 21. with the new team in Evansville expecting to have ticket packages available in the beginning of March. A contest to name the team will also be facilitated by the ownership and the SPHL, which will seek input from hockey fans in the tri-state area. For more information about the new Evansville team, visit the league’s website at www.thesphl.com. A temporary email account has also been created for the team owner at EVNPROHOCKEY@gmail.com.

Mayor Winnecke concluded the event by thanking fans for making Evansvile a “hockey town” and extended his appreciation to the Evansville IceMen for representing the city for the past nine years.
Posted by David Schmoll at 3:22 PM


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Updated: December 9, 2017