Owners sell Niagara IceDogs to Brantford GM

A hockey puck is seen in this undated image. (Vladislav Gajic/shutterstock.com)

It's a new era for the Niagara IceDogs.

Owners Bill and Denise Burke announced Tuesday that they had decided to sell the team to Darren DeDobbelaer, the general manager of the Brantford Bandits and Brantford 99ers.

The Burkes purchased the IceDogs in 2007.

They posted a statement on the team's website which reads, in part: "After 15 years, it is with mixed emotion to announce that we have decided to move on. It was one of the greatest joys of our lives to be able to bring major junior hockey back to the Niagara Region and see our fan base flourish as you all embraced us."

They went on to say: "We are proud of the brand that we have built here, and the relationships that have been forged in the community."

The announcement comes a little more than a month after Bill and Joey Burke were suspended by the Ontario Hockey League. On April 6, the OHL said the two were indefinitely suspended after an investigation into a WhatsApp conversation. Joey Burke, the IceDogs' general manager, and Bill were also fined $150,000 along with the team. The OHL said both Bill and Joey could not apply to be reinstated prior to June 1, 2024.

MORE: OHL suspends coach, general manager of Niagara IceDogs over WhatsApp conversation

DeDobbelaer will acquire the team once the deal gets approval from the OHL Board of Governors.

CTV News reached out to DeDobbelaer but he did not want to comment at this time.