Rockets GM Bruce Hamilton and MC chairman Tom Dyas
Winning the Memorial Cup in 2004 in front of the hometown crowd
was a memory Kelowna Rockets general manager Bruce Hamilton will never forget.
The architect of one of the most successful junior hockey
franchises in all of Canada wants to do it all over again.
The Rockets organization made it official Thursday by throwing
their hat into the ring by announcing they will bid for the 2020 Memorial Cup.
Hamilton says if league governors grant them the right to
host the 10 day tournament, it will be better than it was 16 years ago.
"We have more arms to reach out and grab", when
speaking of the volunteer base that exists in Kelowna. "We needed to make
it bigger and better. We need new ideas. We can't stand by and do the same
The organization has enlisted businessman Tom Dyas to chair the
bid committee, who will make a presentation before WHL governors in early
"If there is a community that is going to raise the
bar on tournaments of this nature, it would be this community. With its
involvement, with its love for the sport of hockey, it is something
that will just happen almost naturally."
Buffalo Sabres defenceman Josh Gorges was on hand for the
announcement. Gorges was the captain of the Rockets when they won junior
hockey's ultimate prize.
"I am excited about the fact that they have an opportunity
to bring the Memorial Cup back to Kelowna. I think it is a great spot for
it, and to be honest, I don't think there’s a better spot for
Kelowna will compete for the right to host the 2020 Memorial Cup
with Kamloops and likely Victoria, who have yet to formally announce their
interest in the marquee event.