HARTFORD, CONN. (AP/WFAN) — The former owner of the Hartford Whalers says he and the NHL’s New York Rangers are ending their marketing agreement for the Connecticut Whale minor league hockey team.

Howard Baldwin’s partnership took over marketing and other operations of the American Hockey League franchise in Hartford from The Madison Square Garden Co. in 2010. Baldwin said in a statement Tuesday evening that he and the Rangers agreed to end their deal. He cited high operational costs and fixed expenses but didn’t elaborate.

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When Baldwin took control, the team changed its name from the Hartford Wolf Pack to the Connecticut Whale in honor of the Whalers hockey team. The franchise has made the playoffs 14 of the last 15 years.

Baldwin said MSG will re-assume the marketing operations.

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Baldwin has been trying to convince the NHL that the city deserves a big league team. The Whalers left town in 1997 to become the Carolina Hurricanes.

Rangers officials confirmed the deal with Baldwin is ending but declined further comment Wednesday.

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