Cleveland hockey fans flip out over Monsters’ switch to Lumberjacks for this weekend only

Cleveland hockey fans flip out over Monsters’ switch to Lumberjacks for this weekend only
Cleveland Lumberjacks (Source: WOIO)

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Cleveland Monsters fans, don’t worry... The team calling themselves the “Lumberjacks” is for this weekend and this weekend only.

But some of those fans that didn’t know about the promotional weekend to celebrate the former Cleveland hockey team were in for a surprise on New Year’s Day.

As you know, New Year’s Day is synonymous with making changes. Most of these changes are so predictable that people hardly react when they hear about it.

However, the Cleveland Monster’s change announced by this tweet saying “New year, new team. #LetsGoJacks” with the Monsters logo and name being replaced by “Lumberjacks,” had fans flipping out.

With no explanation about the apparent re-branding given in the tweet, fans weren’t sure if this was a joke or just a startling decision.

Some were excited to see the change, for however long it would be, that would bring back the old team name.

For those that need a quick local history lesson, the Lumberjacks were an international hockey league based in Cleveland that came to be based in Cleveland in 1992.

The team was originally formed in Muskegon, Michigan in 1960 as the Muskegon Zephyrs and was renamed to the Mohawks in 1965 before coming to The Land.

While here, the Lumberjacks’ logo featured their beaver mascot named Buzz in overalls with a homemade hockey stick, all framed by a circular saw blade.

The Lumberjacks were eventually replaced by the AHL’s Cleveland Barons in 2001.

However, the questions of whether the rename was permanent were quickly answered on Twitter when the team confirmed the throwback change was just for this upcoming weekend.

Switching up the Twitter profile’s name and picture is actually just to catch your attention to advertise the throwback tributes the Monsters announced back in the summer.

This weekend’s homestand against the Milwaukee Admirals have been dubbed Cleveland Lumberjacks Weekend, where the Monsters will “pay tribute to the Lumberjacks era of Cleveland hockey.”

The games are on Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 1 p.m.

According to the Cleveland Monsters:

"After the New Year, the Monsters will begin 2020 by transforming into the Cleveland Lumberjacks for two games during the first weekend in January to pay homage to the former International Hockey League team that resided in Cleveland from 1992-2001. The look-and-feel at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse will match the weekend as the visiting Milwaukee Admirals will also wear their former IHL jerseys, Lumberjacks alumni will be in the house along with Lumberjacks mascot “Buzz”, in addition to numerous concourse activations.

Fans interested in bidding on the Monsters’ specialty jerseys can do so by downloading the Monsters Mobile App Presented by University Hospitals and using the ‘Monsters Auction’ tab with proceeds benefitting the Monsters Community Foundation. Additional information can be found at the Community Corner presented by Cargill outside Portal 6, or by visiting clevelandmonsters.com/jersey.

The Lumberjacks relocated to Cleveland from Muskegon, Michigan following a 14-year absence of professional hockey from the city. Perhaps the Lumberjacks’ most notable alumni is now the Monsters VP, Hockey Affairs/Team Services, Jock Callander. The Regina, Saskatchewan native and Stanley Cup Champion holds several Lumberjacks franchise records, including career goals (181), assists (279) and points (460). Callander is also one of just three Cleveland hockey players to have his number retired."

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