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George Gillett, left, pauses to compose himself after announcing the sale of the Montreal Canadiens in September. Geoff Molson, the head of the new ownership group, looks on during a news conference before the team's celebrity golf tournament.

Ryan Remiorz/Ryan Remiorz/CP

The NHL board of governors has approved the sale of the Montreal Canadiens to the Molson family.

Geoff Molson and his brothers Andrew and Justin are the lead investors in a group that is paying a reported $575-million (U.S.) for the storied franchise.

George Gillett put the team up for sale in the spring.

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Geoff Molson will be chairman and chief executive officer.

The sale includes the team, the arena and Gillett Entertainment Group, a concert promotion company.

The announcement comes on the eve of the Canadiens' 100-year anniversary.

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