Saginaw Gears (UHL)

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This article refers to the Saginaw Gears of the UHL. For the Saginaw Gears of the IHL, see Saginaw Gears (IHL).
Saginaw Gears (UHL)

The Saginaw Gears were a minor-league ice hockey franchise that played in the United Hockey League (UHL). The Gears existed one season and part of another, from 1998 to December 19, 1999. On December 20, 1999, the team left Saginaw, Michigan in the middle of the night and moved to Massillon, Ohio to finish the season as the Ohio Gears. The team took their name from a former IHL team as part of a marketing plan by then owner, Khaled M. Shukairy, as an attempt boost poor attendance after two horrible seasons as the LumberKings. The Gears played their home games at Wendler Arena in the Saginaw Civic Center (now known as The Dow Event Center) in downtown Saginaw. Due to poor attendance, the team was moved by UHL commissioner Richard Brosal to Massillon Ohio after a new 6,500 seat arena was to be built. The City of Massillon and developers never followed through with the arena and the ownership were forced to dissolve and cease operations.

The Ohio Gears folded in the summer of 2000, after an unsuccessful resurrection attempt as the Arctic Xpress. Before becoming the Gears, the team was also known as the Saginaw LumberKings (1996–1998), Saginaw Wheels (1994–1996), and Chatham Wheels (1992–1994).