Generals finalize move to City, become Lacombe Generals

Head coach eager to start season in Lacombe community

BY ZACHARY CORMIER

Lacombe Express

It’s official. After 17 years, 11 Chinook Hockey League Championships and three Allan Cups as the Bentley Generals, the 2016 Allan Cup champions are on the move.

Last week, the City of Lacombe announced that the Senior Men’s AAA hockey club has entered into an agreement to relocate to Lacombe for the 2016-17 season.

“It kind of feels like you’ve got a whole new look on life. It’s just different. It’s exciting, it’s strange, it’s a little bit sad that you’re changing your name and who you are and where you play out of. But we’re still the Generals. We’re just in a new place that has formally accepted us and embraced us,” said Jeff McInnis, the general manager of the Lacombe Generals.

Lacombe Mayor Steve Christie added he is excited for the move as well.

“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome the Lacombe Generals to their new home. I have no doubt that this celebrated Chinook Hockey League franchise will continue to entertain and delight fans with their brand of elite-level hockey for years to come,” he said.

The move, which has been in the works for the past year and a half, was initially proposed by the Generals after Lacombe City council approved the addition of a dedicated 2,067 sq ft. dressing room for the team as part of a two year $13.6 million renovation and expansion of the Lacombe Sports and Leisure Complex at their Dec. 14th meeting.

“We had a town council meeting when the vote went ahead and that was a game changer. We had been working on it about a year and a half prior to that because we knew that, financially, we couldn’t stay in Bentley. So finally when the ball started to roll it was a wonderful feeling,” said McInnis.

“You genuinely felt that the City was looking for something. The City wanted a team to call their own.”

That feeling came true during this year’s Chinook Hockey League playoffs, as the Generals played their home games at the Lacombe Sports and Leisure Complex in front of near sellout crowds on the way to the Chinook Hockey League championship and, eventually, their third Allan Cup.

“The fans came out in droves and we were winning. There was just a really good energy around, so it couldn’t have been better as far as showing what it’s going to be,” McInnis said, adding that having a dedicated dressing room to work out of will be a huge boost for the team.

“I think it’s going to be better because our training staff and players will have their own dressing room to work out of because we were like a travelling band of gypsies before. This year was tough at some times but great in others because it gave us an appreciation of what Lacombe’s going to be.”

While the move to Lacombe is exciting for the Generals, McInnis noted that it is a little bit sad to be leaving Bentley.

“To think that our little team that we started 17 years ago would grow and have this success, I don’t think we would have had this success had we had the team anywhere else. It was a match made in heaven,” he said.

The Generals’ time in Bentley closed with a bang, though, as they won one last Allan Cup championship banner for the town that supported them for so many years.

“It’s great closure. We had a wonderful celebration there last weekend, in Bentley. It’s a wonderful way to go out and it’s also a wonderful way to come into Lacombe, as the defending Champions,” McInnis said.

zcormier@lacombeexpress.com

 

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Blackfalds holds annual Charity Check-stop

Central Alberta Victim Services and Blackfalds FCSS benefits from donations

Blood donor clinic set for Dec. 24th in Lacombe

Canadian Blood Services has called for more than 30,000 blood donors across the country

U19 Sting ringette goes 3-2 in Lacombe tournament

Spruce Grove goalie keeps Central Alberta out of medal round

UPDATE: Lacombe Generals finish 2018 on four-game win streak

15 goals in two games has Generals sitting pretty

40-year Big Brother match a gift to Lacombe man

Andy Pawlyk and his Little Brother Chris Selathamby honoured at BBBS Awards Night

WATCH: CP Holiday Train rolls into Lacombe

Kelly Prescott performed for hundreds of Central Albertans

Trump signs order to create US Space Command

President Donald Trump signs an executive order to create a U.S. Space Command.

Groups preparing new pipeline legal challenge, argue government’s mind made up

A Vancouver-based environment charity is readying itself to go back to court if the federal government reapproves the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Notorious Toronto triple killer gets third consecutive life sentence

Dellen Millard gets third consecutive life sentence for father’s death.

‘Subdued’ housing market predicted in B.C. through 2021: report

The Central 1 Credit Union report predicts “rising but subdued sales” over the next three years, with little movement in median home prices.

A journey through 2018’s top pop culture moments

Was there any pop culture this year? Of course there was.

‘A stronger Alberta:’ Ottawa announces $1.6B for Canada’s oil and gas sector

Price of Alberta oil plummeted so low that Alberta’s Premier said Canada was practically giving it away

Canadians to get low-cost data-only mobile phone plans within 90 days: CRTC

Bell, Rogers and Telus will provide plans as cheap as 250MB for $15

Four per cent of Canadian women report being sexually harassed in the workplace

One per cent of men report being sexually harassed in the workplace

Most Read