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Last updated: February 8, 2010 8:13 p.m.

Lumberjacks leaving IHL

By Justin A. Cohn
The Journal Gazette

The IHL's Muskegon Lumberjacks will fold after this season and be replaced in Muskegon with a junior team in the United States Hockey League, the Muskegon Chronicle reported.

"There are issues in the minor pro system today," Lumberjacks president Jeff Patulski told the Chronicle. "We had to make sure we got through 50 years. But we view it as the minor pro business model is not sustainable for the long term."

In the USHL, the Lumberjacks will be owned by Indianapolis businessman John Mervis, the Chronicle reported, while co-owners Jeff and Stacey Patulski will be retained, along with general manager Tim Taylor to run the team.

The IHL, which has six other teams, including the Fort Wayne Komets, are holding their two-day annual meetings through Tuesday.

Komets president Michael Franke, who heads the IHL's Board of Governors, couldn't be reached for comment.

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