The Columbus Blue Jackets have reached a new multi-year agreement with the Cleveland Monsters, their AHL affiliate. The two organizations have developed into one of the strongest NHL-AHL relationships in the league since they partnered in 2015, including a Calder Cup championship in 2016.
Monsters team president Mike Ostrowski released the following statement in regards to the new agreement:
We are extremely proud and excited to continue our affiliation with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Our partnership with Columbus is great on many levels and allows our players to play in a major league environment which provides them a taste of what the NHL experience is like. Monsters fans are the best in the AHL and now they’ll be able to continue seeing future Blue Jackets play right here in downtown Cleveland, as well as follow their careers as they head to the Jackets. This partnership is outstanding for hockey in the state of Ohio.
The strong geographic connection between the two cities is obviously an important part of their relationship, and allows the Blue Jackets to have even more flexibility in terms of roster construction on a day-to-day basis, knowing their affiliate is just up the road.
Cleveland meanwhile has seen many NHL players come through their dressing room since partnering with Columbus, including Zach Werenski, Josh Anderson, Oliver Bjorkstrand, Sonny Milano, Joonas Korpisalo, and Elvis Merzlikins, among others. The two sides will have that pipeline continue now into the future, though the specific details of the agreement were not made public.