In the heart of Bruins country, Springfield (Mass.) ready to embrace Blues

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11/29/2019 – Springfield – The Parade of the Big Balloons drew thousands on Springfield’s Main Street Friday morning. This is Springfield Thunderbirds’ mascot Boomer marching the parade on his ATV. 11/29/2019 – Springfield – The Parade of the Big Balloons drew thousands on Springfield’s Main Street Friday morning. This is Springfield Thunderbirds’ mascot Boomer marching the parade on his ATV.

Leon Nguyen |

Jim Thomas

In the heart of Boston Bruins country, of all places, the Springfield (Mass.) Thunderbirds are eager to wrap their arms around the St. Louis Blues. Well, the Blues’ prospects.

The Blues announced a five-year agreement with the Thunderbirds during the first week of March, replacing the San Antonio Rampage as St. Louis’ American Hockey League affiliate.

Of course, we all know what happened the next week. Hockey, and pretty much the rest of the sports world, shut down March 12 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We’re trying to get ready, but it’s been delayed,” Thunderbirds president Nathan Costa told the Post-Dispatch. “It’s been a challenge. We obviously would’ve been underway by now. But we haven’t been able to do much to be quite honest.”

At the moment, the AHL is shooting for a Feb. 5 start, or about a month after the NHL’s hoped-for return to play.

None of the projected players for the Thunderbirds’ roster have been able to get to Springfield yet because of the pandemic. Costa talks regularly with Kevin McDonald,…

Click here to read the full article at St. Louis Post-Dispatch >

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