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Ottawa Senators moving AHL affiliate to Belleville, Ont.

Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk reacts following the National Capital Commission approving the results from the an evaluation committee regarding the Lebreton Flats redevelopment in Ottawa on Thursday, April 28, 2019.


The Ottawa Senators are moving their American Hockey League team to Canada.

The Senators announced Monday that team owner Eugene Melnyk has purchased Ottawa's AHL affiliate currently residing in Binghamton, N.Y. and will move it to Belleville, Ont. for the start of the 2017-18 season.

According to the statement, the City of Belleville will undertake more than $18.5 million in renovations to prepare the city's Yardmen Arena for professional hockey.

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Belleville was home to the Ontario Hockey League's Bulls from 1981 to 2015, when the team moved to Hamilton and became the Bulldogs.

"Hockey is back in Belleville. The people of Belleville are a deeply passionate and proud hockey community," Melnyk said in a statement. "This community has truly earned the return of hockey and I am committed to making the Belleville Senators an integral part of the city."

Ottawa's AHL affiliate has resided in Binghamton since the 2002-03 season. The team won the Calder Cup championship in 2011.

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