The Washington Capitals have renewed their affiliation agreement with the South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL with a three-year contract extension, senior vice president and general manager Brian MacLellan announced today.
“We are excited to extend our agreement with the South Carolina Stingrays organization,” said MacLellan. “We look forward to continuing our affiliation with a first-class and successful organization in which our prospects can develop.”
The 2020-21 season will mark the seventh consecutive season that the Capitals and Stingrays have been affiliated. The Capitals were also affiliated with South Carolina from 2004 through 2012. South Carolina won the Kelly Cup in 2009 – the same year that Hershey won the AHL’s Calder Cup – and have won two conference championships since 2015. This season, South Carolina finished in first place in the South Division and Eastern Conference with a 44-14-4 record before the season was cut short on March 12.
“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.”
Five players who have played for South Carolina were under contract with Washington in the 2019-20 season: Braden Holtby, Tyler Lewington, Pheonix Copley, Vitek Vanecek and Kristofers Bindulis. Holtby began the 2009-10 season with the Stingrays and represented South Carolina in the ECHL All-Star Game. In 12 career games with South Carolina, Holtby was 7-2-3 with a 2.95 goals against average and a .911 save percentage.
South Carolina named Ryan Blair as the team’s 10th head coach and director of hockey operations on Wednesday.