MISSISSAUGA, ONTARIO – After 11 years of ownership of the Ontario Hockey League’s Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors, Eugene Melnyk today announced the sale of the team to local Mississauga based businessman Elliott Kerr.
In 2001, the Majors were in a dire financial position when Melnyk stepped in to rescue the franchise. As owner, Melnyk brought long-term financial stability to the organization helping it become one of the most consistently competitive teams in the OHL. During Melnyk’s 11-year ownership tenure, the Majors only missed qualifying for the playoffs once. During that time, the team finished first in its Division 3 times, first in the Eastern Conference 3 times, won an Eastern Conference Championship and were finalists for both the J. Ross Robertson Cup (OHL Championship) and the Memorial Cup.
“The Mississauga St. Michael's Majors have been such an integral part of my love and passion for the game of hockey. It has been a privilege to be an OHL owner and to support the development of so many exceptionally talented junior hockey players who have donned the Majors blue and white,” said Melnyk. An impressive 23 of Melnyk’s Majors players have gone on to play in the National Hockey League.
Kerr has previously held an ownership interest in two OHL teams. “Strong local ownership is what Elliott Kerr will first and foremost bring to this franchise. For the fans and the City of Mississauga, there is no doubt I want to see continued ownership stability, but I also want to see this team continue to evolve and get better. I firmly believe Elliott’s knowledge of the Mississauga community coupled with his day to day operational involvement will establish a very bright future for the organization and the hockey team,” said Melnyk. “I would like to take this opportunity to extend my personally thanks to the fans and the many sponsors and businesses from Mississauga and Toronto who have supported the Majors during my 11 year tenure as owner of the team. Together we have grown junior hockey in Ontario.”
The “St. Michael’s Majors” name is the property of St. Michael’s College School. As one of the conditions of the sale, the name and its associated logos will be returned to the school. As such, St. Michael’s College School will be branding its highly anticipated hockey program as the St. Michael’s Majors Division 1 team which begins this September. Melnyk, who is a proud alumnus of St. Michael’s College School and one of its largest donors, will be donating all Majors branded hockey equipment and jerseys to the Division 1 team.
The Mississauga OHL team will be re-branded with a new name and logo.
Majors Milestones: The Melnyk Era (2001 – 2012)
•3 Division titles
•Finished first in the Eastern Conference 3 times
•won the Bobby Orr Trophy as Eastern Conference Champions in 2010-11
•won the Hamilton Spectator Trophy in 2010-11 as OHL Regular Season Champions
•finalists for both the J. Ross Robertson Cup (OHL Championship) and the Memorial Cup in 2010-11
•23 Majors alumni have gone on to play in the National Hockey League
•Qualified for the playoffs in 10 of 11 seasons
•Regular season record of 389-280-46-33
•Playoff record of 69-59
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