ESPANOLA, Ont. – The Northern Ontario Junior A Hockey League’s Espanola franchise has announced a new team name for the start of the 2022-23 season, that will now see the club called, the Paper Kings.
“Coming out COVID-19, we felt it was a right time for a fresh start and a rebrand for our organization,” offered Espanola president and head coach Jason Rapcewicz, in discussing the transition.
With that, the organization has decided to shift in a direction that provides a greater depiction of the town and its main industry.
Adding to that, Rapcewicz said: “We as an organization felt that it is time to represent more of what Espanola is. It has a rich history of being a town of paper makers, with multiple generations of families that have been employed to make paper for over 100 years. We feel that our name change to the Espanola Paper Kings is a more relatable and a greater representation of the Town of Espanola and its residents.”
Sporting a new look, the team colours will consist of white, blue, green and gold while its logo makes offers an innovative appearance.
Now as the sole owner of the franchise, Rapcewicz, who resides in Espanola, aims to become a more community-oriented organization.
“We as a team would like to become more integrated in the community and spend more time giving back to organizations, such as the local food bank, senior’s centres, schools and any local organization that can use some help,” provided the Paper Kings’ team president.
Summarizing, Rapcewicz went on to state: “Although we embraced the Express name, and the time we had under it, we are excited to be moving forward with the rebrand and are enthusiastic for the upcoming 2022-23 season.
Espanola is slated to begin their campaign Friday, September 9 as they host the Cochrane Crunch, in their home opener, before taking on the Hearst Lumberjacks, the following evening, in a pair of 7:30 p.m. starts at the Regional Recreation Complex.
Further updates to the Espanola Paper Kings, including hockey operations, as well as the team website and social media platforms will be announced in the coming days.