Governor asks Whalers banners to be put back into place at Hartford’s XL Center

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has asked the leadership of the Capital Region Development Authority (CRDA) to re-hang the Hartford Whalers banners at the newly renovated XL Center, and the agency has agreed.

“The XL Center holds great value for the state of Connecticut and for our capital city, and we are proud of its legacy — which includes nearly two decades of being the home of Whalers hockey,” Malloy said.

“This arena serves as an important economic driver for the Hartford region, and while the newly unveiled renovations represent its next phase, we should continue to honor and celebrate its history,” Malloy said.

CRDA has indicated that the banners will be up in time for the opening game of the Hartford Wolf Pack hockey team on Saturday, Oct. 18.

Opened as Hartford Civic Center

The XL Center is the former Hartford Civic Center, which has been undergoing renovations. The Hartford Civic Center opened in 1975, and gained national attention in 1978 when the roof collapsed from heavy snow. The arena was empty at the time and no one was injured.

The Hartford Whalers were a National Hockey League (NHL) franchise that played there from 1979 to 1997. The team’s relocation to North Carolina meant Connecticut had lost its only major league professional sports team in history.

The Hartford Wolf Park, a minor league hockey team affiliated with the NHL’s New York Rangers, now play at the XL Center.

The XL Center hosts music concerts, circus shows, monster truck shows and various other types of entertainment as well as minor league hockey games and some UConn basketball games.