The Ducks change minor league affiliates like some people change shoes.
The newest Ducks AHL affiliate will be the Norfolk Admirals beginning in the 2012-13 season. Unlike prior affiliates, this one is a five year contract.
“We are excited to be affiliating with the Admirals in a great hockey market such as Norfolk, Virginia,” said GM Bob Murray. “We look forward to working with the Norfolk organization and continuing the winning tradition the team has created at Norfolk Scope Arena. We would also like to thank the Syracuse Crunch and its fans for their support over the last two seasons.”
Prior to the Syracuse Crunch, the Ducks spent one year with the Iowa Chops. Before that, it was the Portland Pirates.
Norfolk most recently was the affiliate for the Tampa Bay Lightning
“We are excited to have the Ducks as our partner and look for a terrific long-term relationship,” said Admirals President Ken Young. “The Ducks have the nucleus of an excellent club in Anaheim and have a great system of prospects that we will see develop in Norfolk. We look forward to continued top-level hockey in Hampton Roads as Anaheim’s top affiliate.”
The Ducks will provide the Admirals with a full roster of players as well as a coaching and training staff in Norfolk. Trent Yawney, who coached the Admirals to the Calder Cup Playoffs in each of the team’s first five seasons in the AHL will return as head coach in 2012-13. He will be joined behind the bench by assistant coach Marty Wilford, who is Norfolk’s all-time leading scorer among defensemen with 173 points (32g, 141a) in 318 games between 2000-01 and 2004-05.