Oklahoma City Blazers (1992–2009)
The Oklahoma City Blazers were a professional ice hockey team based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, that played in the Central Hockey League. The Blazers played at the Ford Center, located in downtown Oklahoma City. On July 2, 2009, the Blazers ceased operations after failing to reach a lease agreement with the city.
|Oklahoma City Blazers|
|City||Oklahoma City, Oklahoma|
|League||Central Hockey League|
|Home arena||Myriad Convention Center|
|Colors||Burgundy, Gold, White|
|General manager||Brad Lund|
|Head coach||Doug Sauter|
|1992–2009||Oklahoma City Blazers|
|Ray Miron President's Cup||2|
Beginning with the 2010–11 season, the market was served by the Oklahoma City Barons, an American Hockey League team playing at Cox Convention Center as the top affiliate of the National Hockey League's Edmonton Oilers.
In 1992, a new Central Hockey League began play in the same territory as the older league. It also acquired several team names in tribute to the former CHL, including the Oklahoma City Blazers. The new Blazers began play in the Myriad Convention Center, the same home arena as the old team.
They averaged 9,128 fans per game over 17 seasons. The franchise led the CHL in attendance in each of its 17 seasons in the league. On the ice, the Blazers excelled as well, winning nine regular season division championships (including seven straight from 1996 to 2003), five regular season points titles, and CHL championships in 1996 and 2001. The franchise's two greatest stars, Joe Burton and Hardy Sauter, are the CHL's first and third all-time career leading scorers.
In 2002, the Blazers changed their home venue to the new Ford Center.
In 2009, the Blazers withdrew their application a lease extension with the Ford Center and ceased operations. It was reported at the time that city officials were in negotiations with the American Hockey League for an expansion franchise. Following months of speculation, Oklahoma City was granted an AHL franchise on February 10, 2010, when the NHL's Edmonton Oilers reactivated their dormant affiliate and created the Oklahoma City Barons. They began play in the 2010–11 season in the smaller Cox Convention Center (formerly the Myriad) and the team was operated by the former owner of the Blazers, Bob Funk.
John Brooks, the radio play-by-play voice for the University of Oklahoma football and men's basketball teams from 1978 to 1992 and of the original Blazers hockey team, was the on-air play-by-play voice of the relaunched Blazers. Brooks semi-retired from the Blazers after 2004–05 season after 27 seasons in total for both franchises and was inducted into the Blazers Hall of Fame on March 11, 2005.
|1995–96||CHL||William "Bill" Levins Memorial Cup|
|2000–01||CHL||Ray Miron Cup|
- "OKC Blazers cease operations; city to talk with AHL team". The Oklahoman. July 2, 2009.
- "Oklahoma City Blazers Yearly attendance". HockeyDB. Retrieved December 5, 2016.