The Pirates might have pillaged our dignity, but soon hockey could be making a triumphant comeback to southern Maine. We just need to decide how.

According to the Portland Press Herald, four groups have all made proposals to move their teams into the Cross Insurance Arena here in Portland. All four groups are believed to be with the ECHL, or East Coast Hockey League, which began in 1988 with only 5 teams in four states, but has now expanded to a hefty 27 teams across 21 states, including one team located up in Canada (because, of course). The league is only one step below the AHL in terms of talent, and their team lineup includes big cities from Cincinnati to Jacksonville.

Before any one team can set up shop though, all proposals will need to be reviewed by the board of trustees of the Cross Insurance Arena. Mitchell Berkowitz, the chair of the board, said the meeting to decide on which team to go with, if any, would take place on March 8th. The most surprising thing he said, however, was that the board would be open to the idea of multiple teams using the space. Berkowitz even said that the board was willing to accept the proposals of all four groups, if the conditions of the deals are right. Four teams in one space? Talk about a cluster-puck!

Are you excited about the possibility of pro hockey coming back to Maine? Let us know in the comments!