The sudden cancellation of the Rivermen contract by Espanola town council has the team owner wondering what else is at play. Tim Clayden understands council’s concern over four teams quitting the CIHL in its inaugural year. But he doesn’t believe this is the only reason why the contract was cancelled. He believes there could be outside influences at work trying to bring an NOJHL team back to Espanola. Meanwhile the CIHL could be facing new problems. Hockey News North says the Michigan teams the league had a verbal deal with are joining another American league. The owner of the Espanola Rivermen was planning interlocking games between the Northern Ontario and Michigan teams. With this latest development the CIHL is down to two teams. However the league can still get its four team minimum if Blind River comes on board as well as a potential club in Levack.