The NHL may be gearing up for the playoffs, but it's still summer meaning there is other business to attend to as well. The Capitals and South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL have renewed their affiliation agreement with a three-year contract extension, general manager Brian MacLellan announced on Thursday. Washington and South Carolina have been affiliated for six consecutive seasons and this new agreement will extend them out to nine. The two teams were also affiliated from 2004 to 2012 before the Caps had a two-year affiliation with the Reading Royals.
“We are excited to extend our agreement with the South Carolina Stingrays organization,” MacLellan said in a statement. “We look forward to continuing our affiliation with a first-class and successful organization in which our prospects can develop.”
The Capitals also renewed their AHL affiliation with the Hershey Bears earlier in the year.
The owner of the Stingrays, Todd Halloran, appeared on an episode of the Capitals Talk podcast in May and was effusive in his praise of the Caps and their affiliation.
"I know that the Capitals recently renewed their affiliation with Hershey, obviously that’s priority,” Halloran said. “I’m sure in the coming weeks here, we’ll be doing the same. I don’t have any great concerns about it. It’s been a great relationship.”
Washington currently has five players under contract who have played for South Carolina: Braden Holtby, Tyler Lewington, Pheonix Copley, Vitek Vanecek and Kristofers Bindulis. All but Bindulis are on the team's current training camp roster.
"The Washington Capitals are a first-class organization,” Rob Concannon, president of the South Carolina Stingrays, said. “They have been a great partner with us for a long time. We look forward to continuing to help some of their young prospects develop."
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