Wait.... don't the individual teams usually own the league itself anyway?
Not in the case of the WPHL (doing business as the CHL). Remember, in that case, the league was itself a separate business entity, owned by the publicly traded Global Entertainment Corporation... who also owned an arena-building company.
The Central Hockey League (CHL) is pleased to make a historic announcement as the League is now under the ownership and control of Central Partners, LLC, a collection of the franchise owners in the League.
The CHL now becomes an ownership owned league as the group is excitedly making plans to carry the two decade plus history of the League to new historic success. Wichita Thunder Co-Owner Rodney Steven II has been named the Interim Chairman of Central Partners, LLC.
The CHL’s 22nd season is set to begin in October with 10 teams participating in the 2013-14 campaign including expansion franchise in Brampton, Ontario (Beast) and in St. Charles, Missouri (Chill).
“As the Central Hockey League moves forward into a new era, we are excited to have the group of team owners take ownership of the League,” said Duane Lewis, CHL Commissioner. “This positive step is meant to put the CHL on its best foot forward as the owners’ common goal is one of competition on the ice, but full team support off the ice. For the fans of the CHL, the transition is a seamless one, as they will see renewed rivalries, and new rivalries emerge, and a tremendous sense of pride as the teams take to the ice and their communities for the upcoming season and beyond. Thank you to our longtime supporters, and to the new fans who come out to support their local teams. See you on the ice soon!”
The league entity doesn't change, just the ownership. Unless the new owners are willing to tear up contracts and renegotiate, then I'd guess current contracts and agreements remain in place.
The league entity does change - previously, the league was a separate corporation that was wholly-owned by Global. No longer. It is now an LLC, likely organized like a partnership, with the 10 remaining Central Hockey League teams (their legal corporate personas, that is) as the constituent members of the LLC. The league's identity doesn't change - but the entity DEFINITELY changes, and in a very big way.
Secondly, you only engage in a reorganization transaction such as this for financial reasons - and you can bet that a lot of that means avoiding existing contractual liabilities. Current contracts and agreements likely do remain in place - but the idea is that with a new entity, the assigned contacts can be avoided or renegotiated by the new entity (the new LLC, in this case.)