PHILADELPHIA — The National Lacrosse League announced on Wednesday that the New England Black Wolves will be relocating to Albany for the 2021-2022 season.
The team was sold to a group headed by former Division 1 men's lacrosse All-American and Canadian field lacrosse national player Oliver Marti.
“My partners and I couldn’t be more excited to join the National Lacrosse League (NLL). Our group, which is comprised of lacrosse enthusiasts, professionals, and influential people in the industry, are determined to help grow the sport of lacrosse,” said Oliver Marti, the head of the Albany NLL ownership group. “The NLL is blossoming, and we want to be a part of its growth, while also being instrumental in the direction the sport of lacrosse is heading,"
“We would like to recognize and thank the fans of the Black Wolves and the staff of MG&E for their support and efforts over the last few years,” Marti added. “As we enter the Albany market, we are ecstatic about the opportunities that will further fuel our mission to grow the sport. The Capital Region has a growing youth lacrosse platform and obvious success in the collegiate ranks. Along with this, playing out of a top-notch venue like the Times Union Center and entrenching ourselves in the local community, we are poised for long term success.”
The Black Wolves first came to Connecticut in 2014 after relocating from Philadelphia where they won six championships. Last season they were 8-3 before the season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and made the playoffs the previous four years.
“This is a bittersweet day for the league and our sport,” said NLL Commissioner Nick Sakiewicz. “We want to first thank our colleagues at Mohegan Sun for all the positive work they have done building the franchise in New England. We are also very excited to welcome to the league an amazing ownership group with significant success and experience in both the financial investment industry and lacrosse led by Oliver Marti.”
The team will be known for now as Albany NLL until the results of a naming and branding contest involving fans. The new team name will be revealed in April and will take the field for the 2021-2022 season.
“We are proud to have worked side-by-side with the Black Wolves players, coaches and staff,” said Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment CEO Mario Kontomerkos. “Their performance on the field has translated into positive growth in ticket sales and brand awareness across New England, but it is their leadership and commitment as ambassadors in our community that will be missed most. This sale allows Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment to focus and strengthen its position as a global brand in gaming and entertainment.”