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Reading Royals

The Royals are owned by the Berks County Convention Center Authority and are entering their 20th ECHL season. Proudly affiliated with the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers and AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms, Reading plays in the Santander Arena, located in downtown Reading, Pa. at 700 Penn Street.

The Royals won their first Kelly Cup championship in 2013, beating Stockton in five games, in their 12th season playing in Reading.

The team was founded in 1991 as the Columbus Chill. The Chill suspended operations in 1999 and laid dormant for two years before beginning play in Reading in 2001. The Royals qualified for the postseason for the first time in 2003-04 under former Chill player Derek Clancey as head coach and made the conference finals. Forward Larry Courville played for the Royals from 2004-08 and then became the team’s head coach with 38 games left in the 2008-09 season.

Forward Kirk MacDonald won the 2013 Kelly Cup with the Royals and served as an assistant coach under Courville from 2014-17. MacDonald became the team’s interim head coach in April 2017 and was named head coach in May 2017. In his first full season leading the Royals, Reading finished with 87 points and made the Kelly Cup Playoffs. 

During the Royals’ Kelly Cup championship run in 2013 under Courville, captain Yannick Tifu played in every regular season and postseason game. His #10 and Courville’s #22 are the only two numbers retired by the team.

Royals fans affectionately refer to the club as “Goaltender U” because of the number of future NHL goaltenders that have come through Reading, including Jonathan Quick, Philipp Grubauer, James Reimer, Ben Scrivens, Michael Hutchinson and Barry Brust.

The Royals are four-time division champions.