The Nanaimo Clippers made moves last week in an effort to better set themselves up for the Western Canada Cup.
The city’s B.C. Hockey League junior A club made a major announcement Friday, adding Hadi Abassi to the ownership group.
Abassi, a prominent Nanaimo businessman, also owns the Vancouver Island Raiders junior football team, the Nanaimo Timbermen senior A lacrosse team and the Timbermen junior A lacrosse team.
With the Clippers, he joins an ownership group already consisting of Ken Wagner, Bill Gallacher, Kelly Hrudey, Paul Colborne and David Moir. Abassi’s percentage stake in ownership wasn’t revealed, but it’s believed he is a minority partner.
Wagner said the club wished to increase its local representation.
“He’s here to help us with this WCC because he understands the value of this tournament,” Wagner said. “He’s a pretty passionate guy about the community.”
Abassi told the Bulletin he is excited about getting involved in this coming spring’s championship hockey tournament.
Creating a link between the Clippers, Raiders and Timbermen might also benefit all involved; for example, football and lacrosse tickets could become available at the hockey club’s office at Beban Park.
“There might be synergies to use the Beban House for other sports teams and concentrate that under one facility,” Wagner said.
The Clippers’ governor said he’s satisfied with the preparations for the Western Canada Cup, as the various committees are in place.
“Now we have to start putting the puck in the net as far as sponsorship,” Wagner said.
ICE CHIPS … For information on tournament ticket packages, visit www.nanaimoclippers.com.