Chuck Anselmo Jr. and Chuck Anselmo III are the new owners of the Louisiana IceGators, and the father-son team is bringing the hockey franchise back to the Cajundome. Chuck Anselmo Jr. and Chuck Anselmo III are the new owners of the Louisiana IceGators, and the father-son team is bringing the hockey franchise back to the Cajundome. Monday the Cajundome Commission approved a two-year lease agreement with the IceGators. The deal requires the Cajundome to spend an estimated $324,000 on equipment and also includes several safeguards for the facility, such as a $125,000 deposit and an option to cancel the contract if attendance drops too low.
After drawing record crowds in the 1990s, the IceGators folded in 2004 due to mounting losses and dwindling attendance. Last year, bar owner Danny Smith revived the team, which played its home games at Blackham Coliseum. In May, Smith told ABiz that the team lost money in its inaugural year, but with an improved roster and the return of General Manager Dave Berryman, he was optimistic looking ahead to the 2010-2011 season. Smith could not be reached this morning for comment regarding his sale of the franchise.
The new owners appear to be newcomers to the sports business, but have retained Berryman as GM. In a story in today's Advocate on the team's return to the dome, Anselmo Jr. is quoted saying: "Down here, if you've got beer and contact sports, you've got a success." Chuck Anselmo is listed with the Louisiana Secretary of State's office as president and director of The North Ridge Estates Owners Association Inc. in Carencro. Charles Anselmo III is listed as manager of All States Roofing Systems LLC of Lafayette.
The IceGators are expected to kickoff the new season in late October. For more information, check the team's website at www.icegators.com.