In April 2015, the Blue Jackets and Lake Erie Monsters announced a multi-year NHL/AHL affiliation agreement, bringing two of Ohio's strongest hockey cities together for the first time.
The Monsters are owned by Dan Gilbert and Cavaliers Hockey Holdings, LLC and play their home games at Quicken Loans Arena, along with the National Basketball Association’s Cleveland Cavaliers and the Arena Football League’s Cleveland Gladiators. The 2015-16 season will be the Monsters’ ninth as a member of the American Hockey League with the club having served as the AHL affiliate of the Colorado Avalanche over the past eight years.
Prior to the Monsters, Cleveland was home to the AHL’s Cleveland Barons from 2001-06 and the International Hockey League’s Cleveland Lumberjacks from 1992-2001. Professional hockey in the city dates to 1929-30 as the International Hockey League’s Cleveland Indians debuted that season, which began a 49-year stretch of professional hockey clubs in the market, including the original Barons of the AHL (1937-73), the World Hockey Association’s Crusaders (1972-76) and NHL’s Barons (1976-78). The city and their AHL teams hold nine Calder Cup Championships.