Rockets unable to bid for Memorial Cup due to condition of Prospera Place – Kelowna News

Place Prospera, as it is now, is no longer up to a building that can accommodate the national championship of the Canadian Hockey League.

Following the CHL’s Friday night announcement of the 2023 Memorial Cup being awarded to Kamloops, the Kelowna Rockets released a statement expressing their disappointment at not being able to bid on the event they lost after the cancellation of the 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a message to ticket holders, sponsors and fans, the Rockets said, in part, “when we submitted our intent to bid, there was an audit of Prospera Place commissioned by the Rockets, City of Kelowna and the GSL Group which owns, operates and manages the arena.

“This audit revealed that there were significant deficiencies that needed to be upgraded in order for the facility to meet CHL standards for hosting the Memorial Cup.

“Ultimately, an agreement with the Rockets, the City of Kelowna and the GSL Group could not be reached to make the necessary capital improvements to the building.”

Without the necessary improvements, the Rockets said they were unable to continue their bid to host the 2023 Memorial Cup.

The Rockets have called Prospera Place home for the past 22 years, hosting over 900 games, including the 2004 Memorial Cup. The building has also hosted the World Junior Championship, Top Prospects Game and a preseason game of the NHL.

“Our hope, as we look to the future, is that the GSL Group will work to complete the necessary improvements identified by the audit so that we can once again bring a Memorial Cup back to Kelowna.”

The building was completed in 1999 as part of a partnership between the city and the GSL group. Under this agreement, the GSL Group will own and operate the building for 30 years before handing it over to the city.

When the Rockets won the ill-fated 2020 Memorial Cup, the bidding process was conducted by the WHL, not the CHL. The build requirements for the event have now changed, with the CHL taking over the selection.

Leave a Comment