Letter From The President
Dear Worcester Hockey Fans:
January 9, 2006, is an important day in the hockey history of Worcester.
Today, because of the efforts of the city government, the DCU Center management, the corporate community and the fans, the American Hockey League returns to Worcester for the 2006-2007 season!
Let me introduce you to the Worcester Sharks, the top development franchise of the NHL’s San Jose Sharks. In October 2006, we will begin play in a newly configured, approximately 7,000-seat, DCU Center. Your Sharks will come with a new look, a new style, and a new commitment to hockey in Worcester!
Your Sharks are one of the most successful development teams in the AHL. Currently 15 of the 23 players on the San Jose Sharks roster have come through the development system, displaying the parent club’s ability to find and develop talent.
With Massachusetts natives Tim Burke, San Jose’s Director of Scouting, and Cap Raeder, a professional scout and a former member of the WHA’s New England Whalers, the Sharks already have deep roots in New England. Not to mention that Worcester Sharks General Manager Wayne Thomas maintains a home in East Falmouth. We have a great deal of respect for the hockey culture of the northeast as nearly one-third of our prospects have ties to the region (either via a hometown or college).
The Worcester Sharks will be committed to being an active part of your community on and off the ice. We will be run locally and be based in the DCU Center. We have an “open door” policy for our fans and our partners - we look forward to your feedback. Over the next two months we will have many announcements on everything from ticket prices and perks to a mascot naming contest for our Shark, so be sure to keep checking back.
The deal to bring the Sharks and the AHL back to Worcester was a team effort and there are many thanks to spread around. The biggest appreciation needs to go to you, the fans, for your interest, your patience and your active participation in the process of recruiting a team. We are excited about the opportunity be a part of this great and growing community.
Our success over the next decade is now in your hands! The pledge drive will continue as we join the community’s fabric and we need your help to grow the commitment number everyday. Tell your friends, family, and local businesses to jump in the water with your Sharks. As we move forward together, we will be successful together.
Thank you for the outpouring of support that has returned professional hockey back to Worcester!
Michael T. Lehr