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A blow for western Mass. hockey fans: Springfield is losing its AHL team

Sad news for hockey fans out in the western part of the state, as Arizona is taking its hockey team.

Lisa Meyer/Getty Images

It was a move that some saw coming, but still hits pretty hard: Springfield is losing the AHL's Falcons.

A news release from the Coyotes confirms those plans, meaning the Falcons are all but done in Springfield.

It's been a rough go as of late for the Falcons, who had the AHL's worst attendance numbers this season. The current Falcons franchise has been in existence since 1994, but Springfield has been home to some kind of professional team for nearly a century.

Awkwardly enough, the American Hockey League's offices are in Springfield, meaning the city could have suits, but no skates.

There's a chance that the league vetoes the move, but given the franchise's struggles and the league's apparent desire to have affiliates closer to the parent clubs, it'll probably go through.

The Falcons were division winners as recently as two seasons ago, but have struggled to draw fans. Notable Falcons alumni include Danny Briere, Cam Atkinson, Manny Legace and Rob Schremp.