Monsters and Blue Jackets announce affiliation extension

Columbus Blue Jackets, Cleveland Monsters announce long-term extension of current multi-year affiliation partnership

Oct 20, 2023

The Columbus Blue Jackets and Cleveland Monsters announced today a long-term, multi-year affiliation extension through the current decade of their current National Hockey League and American Hockey League partnership agreement. Terms were not announced. The Monsters have been the Blue Jackets’ AHL affiliate since the 2015-16 season, which culminated with the club capturing the 2016 Calder Cup championship, the first in franchise history and the first by a Columbus affiliate. The Monsters play their home games at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. The Blue Jackets play their home games at Nationwide Arena in downtown Columbus, Ohio.


The Monsters have one of the top home ice advantages in the AHL, as the club has led the league in attendance two of the last three seasons, including a league best average and franchise record of 9,521 fans per game during the 2022-23 season. The team has been multiple-time American Hockey League award winners across various business verticals, including top overall fan experience, group ticket sales growth, corporate partnership team of the year and marketing team of the year. A community leader through their ongoing efforts to grow the game in Northeast Ohio, the Monsters continue to implement many key initiatives, including their certified “Learn to Play” partner programs, year-round on-ice and street hockey clinics, education and wellness programs and region-wide DEI partnerships.


Since the Blue Jackets-Monsters partnership began in the 15-16 season, Cleveland has an overall regular season record of 246-230-44-25 and playoff record of 18-7, including the aforementioned Calder Cup title won on home ice in front of 19,665 fans, the second-largest crowd in franchise history. The largest crowd was the Cleveland Monsters Outdoor Classic at Cleveland Browns Stadium on March 4, 2023 which had 22,875 fans.


“Giving our young players an opportunity to grow and develop both on and off the ice in a world-class environment like the one they have with the Cleveland Monsters is very special and we couldn’t be prouder and more excited that our partnership will continue for many years to come,” said Blue Jackets Director of Player Personnel and Monsters General Manager Chris Clark.  “Both organizations share a commitment to succeed at the highest level, while growing the game and having a positive impact in our communities and state and we look forward to continuing that work together.” 


Mike Ostrowski, Rock Entertainment Group’s President of Franchise Properties, which includes the Monsters and NBA G League’s Cleveland Charge added, “We are very excited to continue our partnership with the Columbus Blue Jackets which keeps together this all-important hockey connection in the great state of Ohio for years to come. The working relationship between our two organizations, close proximity of the state’s two largest cities, and access our fans have as they support Blue Jackets and Monsters players makes our affiliation a natural fit and we can’t wait to see what the future holds.”


The Monsters began the 2023-24 season on the road last weekend and tonight will kick off their 17th AHL campaign and second under current head coach and former Blue Jackets and Monsters player, Trent Vogelhuber, at home against the Syracuse Crunch. The Blue Jackets opened their 23rd NHL season last week and continue their 23-24 campaign tonight with a home matchup against the Calgary Flames.


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