Mississauga gets 2011 Memorial Cup

TERRY KOSHAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:45 AM ET

The 2011 Memorial Cup tournament will be putting down roots in Mississauga.

The Ontario Hockey League has scheduled a news conference for Monday afternoon at the Mississauga Civic Centre, where it will announce that the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors will play host to the Cup next spring.

Other OHL clubs that submitted bids for the event were the Windsor Spitfires, Kingston Frontenacs and Barrie Colts. It will be the first time since 1999, when the Ottawa 67’s played host, that an Eastern Conference club in the OHL will get the event. Since ’99, the Cup has been held in Guelph, London and Kitchener.

Among those slated to be at the announcement on Monday are Majors owner Eugene Melnyk and Mississauga mayor Hazel McCallion.

That Mississauga will be awarded the right to play host the Cup is a bit of a curious move, in that the Majors don’t draw well and reportedly were 19th in attendance in the OHL this season.

The Majors, under GM/coach Dave Cameron, should be a solid team in 2010-11 and will return most of their team from this past season. There will be plenty of arguments, however, that the Cup should have been awarded to the Spitfires, who have won the OHL title the past two seasons and had a 24% increase in attendance in 2009-10.

There have been reports that Melnyk guaranteed the OHL a return of $3 million, the Spitfires $2 million.

The Memorial Cup selection committee includes Blue Jays president Paul Beeston, former NHL executive Frank Bonello, NHL vice-president Jim Gregory and NHL central scouting director E.J. McGuire.

The Spitfires will represent the OHL at the 2010 Memorial Cup, which starts on Friday in Brandon, Man.


Videos

Photos