Bruins Change ECHL Affiliate to Gwinnett


After three years of working with the South Carolina Stingrays, the Boston Bruins will switch their ECHL affiliate. The team has announced a new affiliation with the Gwinnett Gladiators.

Gwinnett director of hockey operations Andy Brandt is excited about the partnership.

“From a working relationship, they care about our success and they are showing an interest in targeting high-profile players that could really help us out,” Brandt said to the Gwinnett Daily Post. “To be able to align ourselves with such a historical and successful team, not to mention a member of the Original Six, is something we are very proud of and take very seriously.”

The Stingrays over the past few years have been affiliated with two NHL clubs, the Bruins and Washington Capitals.

“The Boston Bruins and Providence Bruins are very excited to be forging a new development affiliation with the Gladiators,” Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said in a press release Thursday. “Working with a proud franchise and being a part of the passionate fans in the Duluth community will provide a tremendous opportunity for our young players to continue to grow and help them to reach their full potential as professional hockey players.”

The ECHL has seen a lot of overturn this off season, with the Winnipeg Jets affiliating with the Tulsa Oilers just this week.

This is the Bruins third team in the past four years, after they had the Reading Royals and then the Stingrays.

“They had a big draft this year and last year with a number of prospects,” Brandt also said. “If any of them end up here, (the Bruins) trust that they’ll be developed.

“There is a process and our league can play an important role if the NHL and AHL clubs trust that the right staff is in place. And there needs to be a continual line of communication between Boston and us and Providence.”

For the past four years, the Gladiators have been affiliated with the Arizona Coyotes. This isn’t the first affiliate switch for the Coyotes this off season, either. Their American Hockey League club is now the Springfield Falcons, as opposed to being the Portland Pirates.

“Talking to him {Don Sweeney}, we have a lot of common ground on the development part of the game and making sure players they draft can continue to develop if they come down to the ECHL,” Brandt said. “He’s also gone out right from the beginning and targeted some guys that could be a good two-way fit (between Gwinnett and Providence).”

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