The Norfolk Admirals hockey team, ECHL affiliates of the Carolina Hurricanes, were back on the ice for their season opener on Friday, October 22, after being away from competition for nearly two years. Their last game of the 2019/2020 season came to an end last March during the covid-19 pandemic. At the time, they were in last place in the standings.
Since then, there have been a number of promising changes to the team that hope to get them back on top. Patrick Cavanagh took over as the new owner in mid-2019, the team announced a new affiliation with the Hurricanes in August of this year, and most of the roster has been mixed up. In fact, only two players remain from those who have previously been on the ice for the Admirals—forward Alex Tonge and defenseman Sam Thibault.
The changes are showing promise. In their season opener against the Reading Royals, the Admirals came out on top with a 5-4 overtime win. After losing their second game to the Royals on October 23 and falling short on the next game with the Florida Everblades, the Admirals bounced back to win the next two games in the series against Florida. The Admirals are currently in first place in the ECHL South Division.
The Admirals will be back on the ice for a two-game home series against the Orlando Solar Bears on Thursday, November 4 and Friday, November 5. They will then travel to Reading for a three-game series, getting back on home ice on Wednesday, November 17 against the South Carolina Stingrays.
After being away for the next five games, the Admirals will be back home for an extended period in December, with a three-game series against the Atlanta Gladiators, followed by another three-game series against the Riverblades, then a three-game series against the Wheeling Nailers. That will conclude their home-ice games for 2021, but they will be back home for a three-game series against the Jacksonville Icemen in early January 2022.
Anyone interested in supporting the home team can get ticket information by visiting www.norfolkadmirals.com. They offer single-game tickets, as well as season tickets, premium hospitality, flex plans, and group ticket sales.