The Oshawa Generals and Jeremy Brodeur have won the 2015 Memorial Cup in dramatic fashion, defeating the Kelowna Rockets 2-1 in overtime at what will most likely be the last major hockey game played at Colisee Pepsi in Quebec City.
Kelowna got on the board first, when Tomas Soustal broke the 0-0 tie at 15:08 of the first period. Madison Bowey and Cole Linaker had the assists on the goal scored from the Oshawa goal line. The Rockets remained ahead through the first and a good majority of the second. At 13:50 of the second frame, Anthony Cirelli scored his first of two to tie the game up at one. Dakota Mermis and Josh Brown had the helpers on Cirelli’s first goal of the tournament. The game moved on through the rest of the second and into a scoreless third.
Although the rest of regulation ticked away without a goal, it only took one minute and twenty-eight seconds into the overtime period for Oshawa to claim their fifth Memorial Cup and first in twenty-five years. Cirelli would score his second of the game and second of the tournament with the primary assist going to Fort Lee, New Jersey native Chris Carlisle and the secondary to Tobias Lindberg. The goal closed out the tournament and le Colisee, as the Quebec Remparts, the current primary tenants of the building, will be moving to the new Videotron Centre next season.
The arena opened in 1949 and originally hosted the Quebec Aces, which is where the great Jean Beliveau played prior to joining the Montreal Canadiens in 1950. For this reason, the Colisee was known as “the House that Beliveau Built” early on. The next tenant was the original Quebec Remparts, which included future Habs superstar Guy Lafleur.
In 1972, the Quebec Nordiques of the World Hockey Association took up residence in the arena and would play there as members of the WHA until 1979, when they joined the NHL in the WHA “expansion” that also included the Edmonton Oilers, the Hartford Whalers and the original Winnipeg Jets. In their history, the Nordiques won one Avco World Trophy (as WHA champions) in 1977 and two Adams/Northeast Division championships in the NHL (1986 and 1995).
Prior to the 1995-1996 season, the Nordiques moved to Denver, Colorado to become the Colorado Avalanche. They would win the Stanley Cup their first year in their new city. Quebec City filled the void by adding the former Atlanta Knights of the International Hockey League, known as the Quebec Rafales from 1996 to 1998. The Quebec Citadelles of the American Hockey League also called the arena home from 1999 to 2002. The arena has also hosted the famous Quebec International Peewee Hockey Tournament each February, which over the years has seen participation from future NHL stars such as Mario Lemieux.
In 1997, a new version of the Quebec Remparts would be founded, playing in the QMJHL to this day. They played their final game at le Colisee on May 29, 2015 in the semi-final of the Memorial Cup. They lost 9-3 in that game. They will now move on to the new, 18,482-seat Videotron Centre, built to attract a new NHL franchise to Quebec City and possibly the Winter Olympics as well.
While the overtime goal scored by Anthony Cirelli may have signaled the end of an era for the Colisee Pepsi, the dramatic finish to the tournament crowned Oshawa the champions of the CHL and opened up a new future for Quebec City, the Remparts and, possibly, the NHL.