Connecticut governor invites Dundon to bring Hurricanes back to Hartford

RALEIGH, NC - JUNE 14: Fans of the Carolina Hurricanes cheer during game five of the 2006 NHL Stanley Cup Finals against the Edmonton Oilers on June 14, 2006 at the RBC Center in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Dave Sandford / Getty Images Sport / Getty

If the Carolina Hurricanes are serious about embracing their Whalers heritage, Connecticut governor Dannel P. Malloy wants Hartford to be part of it.

New 'Canes owner Tom Dundon has stated he wants the team to start donning Whalers gear on occasion, and Hartford jerseys are now available to purchase at Carolina home games.

Malloy took it to another level Friday by officially inviting the Hurricanes to return to Hartford and play a regular-season outdoor game at Rentschler Field.

"As you are no doubt aware, Whalers fandom remains strong in Connecticut and throughout the region," Malloy wrote to Dundon. "Nearly 20 years after the team left, Whalers gear remains the top-seller among non-current NHL teams, and the Whalers Brigade continues to host a successful radio program."

Malloy goes on to suggest games could be played at XL Center, and even argues Dundon might just like what he sees in regards to a new permanent home.

"I am convinced that the Hurricanes’ reception in Connecticut - combined with our prime market dynamics - would make clear that Hartford is a far more viable long-term home for the team than Raleigh."