|Home ice||Richmond Coliseum|
|Based in||Richmond, Virginia|
|Colors||Dark Red, Blue, White, Silver|
|League||United Hockey League|
The franchise operated in Richmond from 2003 to 2006. The RiverDogs relocated to Hoffman Estates, Illinois which is part of the Chicago metropolitan area to become the Chicago Hounds for the 2006-07 season. The franchise then disbanded after that.
History[edit | edit source]
In their first year of play in the United Hockey League, the RiverDogs won the Eastern Division in the regular season and made the playoffs only to lose in the first round to the Elmira Jackals.
In the January 31, 2006 sports section of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, team President Jay Acton was quoted as saying "The fans aren't paying my bills." This was very upsetting to a number of fans that pay for tickets to every game or are season ticket holders. Acton was also quoted as saying "We're losing $500,000, and I don't see any more business coming in the building. I don't see any more fans coming into the building."
In UHL attendance, Richmond was generally in the top 3. However, the transfer of coach–general manager Robbie Nichols to a new UHL expansion franchise located in the Chicago area in February 2006 started speculation that the RiverDogs would disband after the season. However, the RiverDogs ended up relocating for the 2006-07 season. The expansion UHL Chicago franchise was already named "Chicago Hounds", but this new expansion franchise was then dissolved allowing the RiverDogs to relocated to the Chicago area. The Chicago Hounds name was then transferred to the relocating RiverDogs franchise. Nichols ended up staying with the team while based in the Chicago area, but then left the franchise in April 2006 to become general manager of the UHL Elmira Jackals and the First Arena in Elmira, New York. Late in the 2006–07 season, the franchise was sold to Craig Drecktrah, owner of the Rockford IceHogs. Drecktrah suspened the team after one season due to problems securing a lease at the Sears Centre. The franchise attempted to resume play as the Hounds in the IHL for the 2008-09 season, however Drecktrah was unable to secure a venue in the Chicago area. The franchise ceased operations when a new franchise called the Chicago Express was formed in 2011. This new franchise also ceased operations after playing in the ECHL for the 2011-12 season only.
Before the relocation, in April 2006, the Richmond Coliseum's management announced that the RiverDogs had missed several deadlines to renew their lease for 2006-07, ending the franchise's operations in Richmond. The RiverDogs were replaced by the second incarnation of the Richmond Renegades, which began play in the Southern Professional Hockey League in October 2006. Former RiverDog Brian Goudie was named player–assistant coach of the SPHL Renegades in 2006-07, and head coach of the Renegades in 2007-08.
Some of the known fighters in the RiverDogs' short history included Trevor Senn, Brad Both, Dave Shields, Matt Goody, and their last head coach, Kris Waltze. "Raz" the RiverDogs mascot was played first by Tim Gearles, and in later seasons by Derrick Hanks and Jamie Hogan.
Richmond Pro Hockey History[edit | edit source]
- Richmond Robins (AHL) 1971-1976
- Richmond Wildcats (SHL) 1976-1977 (Team folded with league, January 1977)
- Richmond Rifles (EHL) 1979-1981
- Richmond Renegades (ECHL) 1990-2003
- Richmond RiverDogs (UHL) 2003-2006
- Richmond Renegades (SPHL) 2006-2009
[edit | edit source]
- Richmond Renegades Has information on the UHL RiverDogs
- The International Hockey League homepage (the UHL became the IHL in 2007)
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