Canons Relocatingby Jeff Dereszynski | September 12, 2018, 12:56 PM ET
With a new regime in Quebec, following the departure of previous General Manager, the Les Canons de Quebec have been quiet as of late.
With approval from the SICHL Board of Govenors, it has been previously announced the SICHL would be leaving Quebec City and relocating to Hamilton, Ontario for the upcoming 2018-19 season.
Hamilton, Ontario has a long history with the steel industry dating back over 100 years with Stelco and Dofasco opening in 1910 and 1912 respectively after suffering through the Hamilton Street Railway strike of 1906.
A rich history of the steel industry in the community was incorporated into the new identity of the relocated franchise with several names but after fan voting in excess of 28,000 votes tallied the winner being the Hamilton SteelHawks.
The birds of prey are prevalent in Southern Ontario especially during hockey season in October and November, combined with the rich history of Hamilton’s steel heritage the combination of these two items gives birth to the relocated franchise.
The SteelHawks will begin play this fall in the FirstOntario Centre, a 17,000 seat arena in the heart of downtown Hamilton. Originally opened in 1985 the 33 year old arena will undergo a $68 million dollar partial renovation this off-season adding modern boxes and concessions to the lower bowl. A 3rd party in 2017 evaluated an estimated cost of $252 million to do a fully upgraded renovation to city councillors but was rejected in lieu of the lesser project.
Despite the SteelHawks not having moved into their offices inside the FirstOntario Centre yet, the SteelHawks announced on their twitter page last night (@SICHLsteelhawks) to completing their first trade of the new team franchise with the St. Louis Spartans. The expansion Seattle Grunge entering the league, most teams are making adjustments to their rosters for their protects lists and the SteelHawks and Spartans are no exception.
From an unnamed source inside the SteelHawks offices, the trade sees Hamilton trade their 2018 1st round draft pick (#13 overall) along with pending free agent Leo Komarov and prospect Zemgus Girgensons going to the World Conference Spartans in exchange for 24 year old centre Phillip Danault and forward Brandon Pirri.
Hamilton receives 2 players who can immediately make an impact in Hamilton especially Danault as a center which is one position the SteelHawks are lacking in depth.
With only 3 days remaining until the trade freeze is re-instituted, could there perhaps be more movements by GM Jeff Deres in preparation for the expansion draft and the upcoming season?