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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Austin to be new home of Dallas AHL; Des Moines stays in league

"There is no threat to the American Hockey League leaving Des Moines," Kirby Schlegel, co-owner of the Iowa Stars AHL team said to Des Moines Register reporter Tom Witosky. Although the Dallas Stars will move their AHL team to a new $55 million venue to be built in Cedar Park, Texas, near Austin, a new team will be put into Des Moines.

A new name could come as early as next season. The Iowa Stars are owned by Schlegel Sports, which has a lease to play at the Wells Fargo Arena through 2015 and may not relocate under any circumstance, the story notes. Polk County, the owner of Wells Fargo, was even guaranteed $7 million to $12.5 million if bankruptcy forced the team to close before 2015.

Dave Andrews, the President of the AHL echoed that the league will stay in Des Moines. No affiliation has been announced for the new team and Andrews said it was premature to speculate. Completion of the Austin facility will not be until 2010.

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