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International Hockey League (2007–)
International Hockey League logo
Sport Ice hockey
Founded 1991
No. of teams 7
Country(ies)  United States
Most recent champion(s) Fort Wayne Komets
Most championships Muskegon Fury (4)
Official website

The International Hockey League is a low-level [1][2][3][4] professional ice hockey league (self-described as "AA"), with teams in the United States. The league is headquartered in Rochester, Michigan, and consists of seven teams. [5]



The IHL was originally formed in 1991 as the Colonial Hockey League. It had teams in Brantford, Ontario; Detroit, Michigan; Flint, Michigan; St. Thomas, Ontario; and Thunder Bay, Ontario. As the ECHL moved westward (into Toledo, Dayton, and Peoria), the CoHL moved eastward, into places like the Adirondacks, Danbury, CT, Binghamton, NY, and Richmond, VA. During that expansion, the league was renamed the United Hockey League in 1997, before renaming itself the International Hockey League in 2007.

The name change was intended to evoke the original IHL (1945-2001), which had long-standing franchises in the Great Lakes region. The Fort Wayne Komets were a longstanding member of the original league. In addition, the Kalamazoo Wings and Flint Generals revived the names of the original Kalamazoo and Flint IHL teams.

Logo of the former UHL from 1997-2006.

On June 27, 2007, a dispersal draft was held among the six IHL teams, selecting players from the four 2006-2007 UHL franchises that are no longer part of the newly named league.


Dennis Hextall was named as the President and Commissioner of the International Hockey League on September 2, 2009.[6] Hextall was preceded by Paul Pickard, who served as Commissioner for the first two years of the renamed league (2007-2009).[7]

Several IHL teams have affiliations with the National Hockey League, American Hockey League, and/or the All American Hockey League.

Current Teams

Team Founded Home Arena Capacity City NHL affiliate (higher) AHL affiliate (higher) AAHL affiliate (lower)
Bloomington PrairieThunder 2006 U.S. Cellular Coliseum 7,000 Bloomington, Illinois
Dayton Gems 2009 Hara Arena 5,500 Trotwood, Ohio Chi-Town Shooters[8]
Flint Generals 1993 Perani Arena and Event Center 4,021 Flint, Michigan
Fort Wayne Komets 1952 Allen County War Memorial Coliseum 10,500 Fort Wayne, Indiana Evansville IceMen[9]
Muskegon Lumberjacks 1992 L. C. Walker Arena 5,000 Muskegon, Michigan Grand Rapids Griffins Battle Creek Revolution[10]
Port Huron Icehawks 2007 McMorran Arena 3,400 Port Huron, Michigan
Quad City Mallards 2009 i Wireless Center 12,000 Moline, Illinois Philadelphia Flyers[11] Adirondack Phantoms

Future Teams

Colonial/Turner Cup champions

The IHL's Colonial Cup, used through 2007.

The Turner Cup is awarded to annual playoff championship. The name Turner Cup has been restored as of September 24, 2007 as a tribute to the original IHL. Before this, the trophy given to the league playoff champions was known as the Colonial Cup. The past winners are:


Year Teams Expansion Defunct Suspended Return from Hiatus Relocated Name Changes
1991 5 Brantford Smoke
Flint Bulldogs
Michigan Falcons
Thunder Bay Thunder Hawks
St. Thomas Wildcats
1992 7 Chatham Wheels
Muskegon Fury
Detroit Falcons (Michigan)
Thunder Bay Thunder Cats (Thunder Hawks)
1993 8 Flint Generals Flint → Utica Bulldogs Thunder Bay Senators (Thunder Cats)
1994 8 Chatham → Saginaw Wheels
St. Thomas → London Wildcats
Flint Generals (Bulldogs)
Utica Blizzard (Bulldogs)
1995 9 Quad City Mallards
Madison Monsters
London Wildcats
1996 10 London Wildcats Detroit → Port Huron Border Cats
London → Dayton Ice Bandits
Saginaw Lumber Kings (Wheels)
Thunder Bay Thunder Cats (Senators)
1997 10 B.C. Icemen
Winston-Salem IceHawks
Utica Blizzard Dayton Ice Bandits
1998 11 Dayton Ice Bandits Brantford → Asheville Smoke
Dayton → Mohawk Valley Prowlers
Saginaw Gears (Lumber Kings)
1999 14 Fort Wayne Komets
Madison Kodiaks
Missouri River Otters
Madison → Knoxville Speed
Saginaw → Ohio Gears
Thunder Bay → Rockford Icehogs
Winston-Salem → Adirondack IceHawks
2000 15 Elmira Jackals
New Haven Knights
Mohawk Valley Prowlers (mid-season)
Ohio Gears
Madison → Kalamazoo Wings
2001 14
2002 10 Port Huron Beacons Asheville Smoke
B.C. Icemen
Knoxville Speed
New Haven Knights
Port Huron Border Cats
2003 12 Columbus Stars
Richmond RiverDogs
Columbus Stars (mid-season)
2004 14 Danbury Thrashers
Kansas City Outlaws
Motor City Mechanics
Adirondack Frostbite (IceHawks)
2005 14 Port Huron Flags Kansas City Outlaws Port Huron → Roanoke Valley Vipers
2006 10 Bloomington PrairieThunder Adirondack Frostbite
Danbury Trashers
Missouri River Otters
Motor City Mechanics
Roanoke Valley Vipers
Richmond → Chicago Hounds
2007 6 Port Huron Icehawks Chicago Hounds
Elmira Jackals (moved to ECHL)
Port Huron Flags
Quad City Mallards
Rockford IceHogs
2008 6 Muskegon Lumberjacks (Fury)
2009 7 Dayton Gems
Quad City Mallards
Kalamazoo Wings (moved to ECHL)

Former teams

See also


  1. ^ "AHL hockey team moving from Omaha to the Quad-Cities," 'Quad City Times,' May 15, 2007
  2. ^ "Put The UHL On A Dead Pool List," 'Chi-Town Daily News,' January 4, 2007
  3. ^ [ "McIlhargey went from the low minors to the NHL," ''
  4. ^ "Where hockey dreams live on," 'Minneapolis Star-Tribune,' January 3, 2007
  5. ^ Official Website of the IHL
  6. ^ "IHL Honored to Announce Hextall as New Leader" -
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ [2]
  9. ^ Fort Wayne Affiliation
  10. ^ BC Announces Affiliation Agreement with Muskegon
  11. ^ Mallards announce affiliation with Philadelphia Flyers
  12. ^ Tuesday 9PM Sports 6/16/09 :
  13. ^ Jackals moved to ECHL -
  14. ^ Wings moved to ECHL -
  15. ^ Had assets bought out by Rockford IceHogs of American Hockey League -

External links


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