Just speaking for me, I'm definitely excited about having the 'Canes' AHL affiliate in CLT as I normally go to 8 to 10 games a year. The Checkers have a loyal fan base and although technically this will be a different team, we love our franchise name Checkers as it has a special meaning especially for me who became a fan as a kid watching the Checkers.
A little history, this became our team name in 1956 when the Baltimore Clippers relocated here until the late 70s. Then when hockey returned in the 90s, the Checkers name was revived.
While, I don't think it's official, I think, or at least hope, we are keeping our team name. Charlotte River Rats--I don't think so, but we'll adjust if necessary. Anyway, I'm looking forward to next season and seeing some hot young players just a "heart-beat" away from the NHL.
Good luck to the AHL Charlotte "Checkers," thank you to the ECHL Charlotte Checkers, and bless your heart Carolina Hurricanes!