By Adam Brazeau
CORNWALL, Ontario – Will the Cornwall River Kings live to fight another day?
After losing 8-0 to the Sorel-Tracy Eperviers at the Ed Lumley Arena on Saturday night, the Ligue Nord Americaine de Hockey has issued the following statement:
“Faced with the impossibility for the Cornwall River Kings to come to Laval this afternoon, the LNAH has no choice but of postponing the game at a later date.
As a meeting of the League and the Board of Governors will be held Monday night and the Kings River situation will be on the agenda, no further comment will be issued in regard to this issue.”
Former owner Brock Frost announced that he sold the team to Darren Madden on Nov. 23. But no one really knows who actually owns the semi-pro franchise. Despite both Frost and Madden signing off on the sale, league officials have yet to weigh in.
In a press release, Frost, a newly elected city councillor, suggests that Madden not only informed LNAH leadership that he no longer wants to buy the team, but also accused him of using the team’s credit card for personal use.
Over the last few weeks, the fans have rallied beside their beloved Kings. At Saturday’s match they donated $1,400 to the players, who are reportedly going without pay. River King enforcer Chris Cloutier blasted Frost on social media for coming up short with his money on game day.
River Kings captain Steve Simoes addressed the crowd before the match about the ongoing saga of the eighth-ranked franchise. He apologized for the antics happening off the ice and confirmed the love of the game is still the squad’s reason for lacing up.
Before Simoes dropped the gloves seconds into the first period, he wrapped up his speech with a quick jab, “I thought I’d give up the microphone, it’s a little bit too much mic time – I’d have to run for politics.”
Behind the scenes, former River Kings general manager Mitch Gagne is fighting to keep the team alive with a new ownership group.