Hockey returns to Binghamton as the Binghamton Black Bears prepare to take the ice


BINGHAMTON, NY (WIVT) – The puck will be dropping inside the Visions Veterans Memorial Arena this fall after all.

About a month ago, we found out we were losing the Binghamton Devils who are moving to Utica.

Binghamton has had a professional hockey team for almost 50 years.

Members of the arena board started working quickly, reaching out to officials in every league letting them know Binghamton was ready to house another professional hockey team.

Which led to County Executive Jason Garnar’s announcement made this morning.

“I am excited to announce that this October, the Visions Veterans Memorial Arena will be home to the Federal Prospects Hockey League’s newest team, the Binghamton Black Bears,” says Garnar.

We were first to report last week on the Federal League’s interest in coming to Binghamton.

It’s a lower level of hockey than the AHL with less skilled players.

But it also promises to be more affordable.

And Garnar says downtown businesses have come to rely on the money hockey fans spend before and after the games.

The owner of the Black Bears Andreas Johansson says he will do all he can to make sure the players are involved in the community.

“The motto for this team is going to be ‘Your City, Your Team’ and we truly want to build something for the city of Binghamton and the fantastic traditional hockey that you have here,” says Johansson.

The hockey schedule will be similar to what it was before, about 30 regular season games plus the playoffs.

In the upcoming weeks more details should be released as far as what the logo will look like and what Johansson has in store for his team.

The Federal Prospects Hockey League already has a team in Elmira called the Enforcers, setting up a natural Route 17 rivalry.

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