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NHL acting like 'illegal cartel,' Coyotes owner charges

From Friday's Globe and Mail

Battle lines drawn in separate court filings as league contends team owner cut illegal deal with Balsillie ...Read the full article

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  1. Midtown Bob from Canada writes: Maybe Gary B should move the Coyotes to El Paso or maybe even San Diego? How's about Vegas?
  2. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: It would certainly seem that way...

    Slainte Mhath
  3. Sil T from Mississauga, Canada writes: What a three-ring circus Bettman has turned this sport into. Coyotes aside, he should be turfed for things getting to this point.

    He's like Monty Python's the Black Knight, except in league commissioner form. "Pay no attention to all evidence to the contrary, hockey in the desert is a terrific recipe for success....."
  4. Al B from Canada writes: Well d'oh...
  5. tommy marks from glendale az, United States writes: Great Job Gary Bettman aka the count for looking out for city's, fans, and the NHL. This is a clear cut case of a man who should have never been a NHL owner, with our new owner will have much better player and more fans. See ya in the Playoffs- Coyote Season Tix Holder
    Good Day!
  6. gwgm . from T.O., Canada writes: Bettman is looking more and more like Captain Queeg from the Caine Mutiny... paranoid and crazy. How long before his crew (the owners) have had enough of paying millions for his vendetta against Balsillie?

    Must be nice to have so much money that you don't mind cutting million dollar cheques to support a loon's nutty war against a successful businessman.

    As for MLSE, I hope they get it in the neck, too. They're in the shadows doing whatever they can to maintain their monopoly to the detriment of real hockey fans.

    If Balsillie doesn't get a team in the T.O. area, Revenue Canada should audit every ticket corporate ticket/box owner who writes off half their ACC costs even though the place is full of company presidents and their wives/girlfriends/kids evry Saturday. Most of us don't go to Leaf games, but we're paying the bill, nonetheless. Stop the tax fraud and the ticket prices will come down.
  7. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    The suit also takes aim at Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, which owns the Toronto Maple Leafs, alleging it has colluded with the league for years to preserve “market power” in the Greater Toronto Area. Prohibiting relocation deprives hockey fans of “increased competition, lower prices, higher quality and more variety,” the suit alleged
    Not Good. They just broke the 11th Commandment
    "Thou shalt not bite the hand that feeds the many."
  8. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: Sil T from Mississauga, Canada :

    I am not sure that the Monty Python's Black Knight is the right comparison here...

    More like the pet store owner in the Dead Parrot Sketch...

    The Yotes are probably just pining for the fjiords...

    Slainte Mhath
  9. Shane Jordan from Winnipeg, Canada writes: tommy marks from glendale az, United States writes: Great Job Gary Bettman aka the count for looking out for city's, fans

    No Tommy, Bettman doesn't give a flying frig about the fans of the game. If he did you would have gotten a team by expansion, not by having a team move. You know, that moving a franchise thing that Gary now says he will fight against so strongly. All Bettman cares about is large corporate sponsorship and if he can get that in Las Vegas or Kansas City within the next month then say bye-bye desert dogs.
  10. Mariposa Belle from Leacockland, Canada writes: I love a good ding-dong hockey fight.

    Since we haven't seen a lot of them in the playoffs, watching good strong hockey instead, the fisticuffs have moved to the boardroom.

    Best playoffs in years.

    For the Monty Python analogy - the BoG is the 4 Yorkshiremen sketch times 8.
  11. Steve Church from Canada writes: Syl T, about that "Bettman should be turfed for ... " Y'mean like keeping the Sabres and Sens alive? Or should the policy have been to use the old muscle-driven CBA and let franchises collapse. In fact, Bettman went to the wall to get a CBA that was incredibly tilted in favour of small-market franchises. The Coyotes couldn't make it work through their own wrong-side stadium, roster mismanagement, crummy results on ice, and a few distracting scandals. Now the deal is to rewrite reality about 'cartels' and predatory monopolistic practices ... MLSE would shrug it off and Buffalo will take it in the face. There's not a pro league in North America that doesn't have territory and boundaries. There's no end of cases (Washington Nationals) where territory loss gets compensation. This is not about Bettman, or the owners, or the NHL Organization - this will hit the right of any franchise in any major sport to relocate wherever they want whenever they want - even if, or maybe because, it will bring the house down.
  12. Keith Jones from Calgary, writes: Bettman and Daly were completely asleep at the wheel, and are now embarrassed by being outmaneuvered by Balsillie and Moyes. Brilliant bankruptcy maneuver; now the league decides that today is the day to officially put Daly in charge of the Coyotes....what a joke!

    Let true businessmen get on with this, and get rid of the pseudo-bureaucrats Bettman and Daly, and their lawyers. The league and its fans will be much better off.
  13. Michael Enright from Toronto, Canada writes: It sounds like a lot of lawyer double talk to me.

    Interesting point though on the anti-competitive stance from the Balsillie side. But isn't it a mute point to be arguing about competition practices (deemed legal by the Canadian Competition Bureau) in a country outside the US. This judge's decision has no legal recourse outside the US borders.

    Not a good strategy to bring MLSE directly into your fight Jim. They've been silent on the sidelines and now you've added another player to your game who have a ton of firepower.

    It will also be interesting to hear Balsillie's thoughts on the ramifications for the Sabres (likely a move of the franchise) with his little game. Save the Coyotes, but kill the Sabres?
  14. Geoff Brookes from Winnipeg, Canada writes: Do we live in a free society or not? If there is a willing buyer, take the money, Gary. Or did you personally buy shares in the Coyotes? Whose interests are you protecting? The leafs and the sabres are a different issue, and that may have to be dealt with. But why prevent a sale to a willing buyer, at (apparently) the highest price? Again, Gary, just whose interests are you protecting? If it is about the Leafs and the Sabres, fine, but just make them work out a compensation deal, under the market economy that we supposedly live in.
  15. David C from a constant traveler from, Canada writes: I am really enjoying the post regular season hockey drama. there is more happening off the ice than a daytime soap opera! Bettman VS Basillie in a bare knuckle brawl.... Who will come out victorious? The villain or the maverick? Stay tuned

    Lets be realistic. Phoenix is never going to be a profitable hockey franchise. so if the NHL (Bettman) denies the offer, two things happen. 1/ the other franchise owners finance a losing team in the arena for another year or three and inevitably the team relocates to Kansas city (new sprint center) or Las Vegas.. (yeah lots of ice there in the cocktails LOL)
    And once again, hardcore Canadian fans are denied the possibility of watching the top of the line hockey players in person.

    Bettman has his motives, they are more aligned with what basketball did as opposed to what the real hockey fans want.

    Boy are we pawns in his game...
  16. Just Me from Maple Laef Village, Canada writes: The MLSE group has been an anchor dragging Ontario citizens around by the nose.

    Protect us and our money greed the MLSE lobbies all. A silent anchor but one that every Ontarian feels some pain because of their corporate policies of domination and greed. This fight is really our David and Gioliath taking on the establishment. They don't like the "new guy" with money.

    Stop the monopoly on sports in Ontario.

    Break up MLSE just like they did with Ma BELL.
  17. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: I agreee with Mariposa. And to add, this power-play is far more entertaining than watching ten guys chase a puck around in May.

    While Ballsillie might not have performed the Freemason handshake and tap dance to get into the old boys club properly, I do question the erudition and business acumen of Bettman brushing off one of the richest men in Canada thrice now. So he can continue to pour money into the desert. What folly.

    I'll cut Glendale a cheque for $33.71 (the price of a ticket), if I get a vote to rename the rink Xanadu.

    Also, this has turned draft day into must-see TV, if for no other reason that seeing the reaction Bettman will get in Montreal (a place, I understand, that doesn't cotton to Americans).
  18. Mariposa Belle from Leacockland, Canada writes: Looking forward to the judge asking ' how did this team get here' , with the NHL lawyers saying 'we pulled it out of its original location because the League thought it could make more money here'.

    Judge: 'But it hasn't and there is a suitor to pay off the creditors and move it to a location where it could make money'.

    NHL: 'Exactly Your Honour, as a League we could not allow reality to interfere with our business plan.'
  19. Philip Ladouceur from United States Outlying writes: Hope that this hassle finally brings Bettman down. He is waging a personal battle which he will lose, and then hopefilly resign. Thank you Jim Balsillie for taking on this fight against the NHL establishment, and MLSE, on behalf of Canadian hockey fans.
  20. prairie storm from Canada writes: Bettman was OK with moving 2 Canadian NHL teams to USA but now says he "wants to fix the problem" & protect hockey fans in Phoenix so they can keep their team. His grand misguided plan of building a large fan base in the USA sunbelt to attract a mega dollar TV contract has failed miserably.
  21. Neil Thomson from OttawaKanata, Canada writes: Factoid - no NHL team can locate within 80 KM of another franchise.

    Distance - Hamilton to Toronto - 79.3
    - Hamilton to Buffalo - 79.8

    Coincidence - NOT!

    All the noise - from Toronto or Mr. Bettman.

    Anti-Trust is alive and well in the hi-tech industry. Why are sports allowed to violate the anti-trust rules? Clearly restraint of trade. NHL governance rules clearly violate basic business laws.
  22. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: 3Mariposa Belle from Leacockland, Canada :


    Despite all the posturing, I doubt that ML$E will put up any real fight to Balsillie's desire to move the Coyotes to Hamilton when push comes to shove...

    With 65% of G&M respondents currently favoring Balsillie in "Making it Seven," could you imagine the resulting damage to the reputation of an already battered and bruised organization should they been seen actively colluding with a cartel using predatory monopolistic practices...

    Has the makings of a good drama, but Balsillie comes out on top in the end of this bout, methinks...

    Slainte Mhath
  23. Sonny Crockett from Canada writes: Bettman is clearly against hockey in Canada, which amounts to an attack on our nation and culture. Probably an extension of Napoleon complex.
  24. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: Neil Thomson from OttawaKanata, Canada :

    Not sure where you are getting those distances (or that "factoid"), but the distances :

    From Buffalo to Hamilton = 109 km

    From Toronto to Hamilton = 68 km

    I don't think that Buffalo would really be THE issue based on your so-called "factoid."

    Slainte Mhath
  25. Scot Loucks from Winnipeg, Canada writes: A lot to say on here.

    A lot of bashing MLSE when they have made no comment.

    A lot of bashing of MLSE when Peddie said on record last week that another team in Southern Ontario would be good for the leafs.

    A lot to say from some great hockey minds while there are playoff games on that most of you are obviously not watching.

  26. The Last Honest Conservative from Canada writes: Sonny Crockett from Canada wrote:
    Bettman is clearly against hockey in Canada, which amounts to an attack on our nation and culture. Probably an extension of Napoleon complex.

    No Sonny,
    Napoleon was much taller .............
    ................ and may have been able to skate
  27. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: Scot Loucks from Winnipeg, Canada writes :

    "A lot to say from some great hockey minds while there are playoff games on that most of you are obviously not watching."

    Sorry, Rev...

    But these developments are far more interesting than a Red Wings' game...

    This issue almost seems like Canadian Hockey History in the making...

    Balsillie is going to win this fight in the end, methinks...

    That's one prediction that even I would be willing to make...

    Slainte Mhath
  28. Scot Loucks from Winnipeg, Canada writes: Miller;

    Not sure on the Balsillie win. I hope so.

    But apparently there are some NHL rules that Moyers has broken.

    I do believe this is Balsille's last shot.... which is why he is taking it.

    Oh.. btw... I wasn't talking to you :)

  29. Sonny Crockett from Canada writes: The Last Honest Conservative from Canada writes: "No Sonny,
    Napoleon was much taller .............
    ................ and may have been able to skate"

    LOL Bettman skating, what a great mental image. That gives me an idea. To solve this we should have a Bettman vs Balsille 1 on 1 hockey tourney. I bet Jimmy B would catch Bettman with his head down.
  30. S H from Windsor, Canada writes: It's time to get rid of Bettman!!!
  31. Phil Courterelle from Calgary, Canada writes: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
    who cares?
  32. Sil T from Mississauga, Canada writes: No Steve, I mean about the steaming pile of failure that has been sun belt expansion.
  33. Steve Church from Canada writes: Then Sil, you're not talking about anything at all. There's no correlation to franchise failure based on latitude. No correlation to teams competing, winning their division, or for that matter post-season success. Sun belt expansion was mandated by the owners and Bettman was hired to make it happen - he had the track record with the NBA.
  34. the canadian friend from Romania writes: THE COMMISSIONER HAS NOT CLOTHES!
  35. the canadian friend from Romania writes: Bettman had a strategy, and it may have worked for another sport like Basketball. But it has failed miserably in hockey. He should wear his lumps, he was wrong, he did not meet performance expectations, he should be fired.
  36. the canadian friend from Romania writes: Bettman's job is to make the owners money. In that respect his sun-belt expansion is a failure. Time for a walk in the snow Gary.
  37. Steve Church from Canada writes: The Canadian - one time, very clear. The Sunbelt expansion was the Owners strategy.
  38. the canadian friend from Romania writes: Sorry Steve, not trying to start a 'fight' with you. My point is that the sun-belt strategy was a failure from a fiscal point of view. In the end, that's what counts for the owners; it really doesn't matter that Tampa Bay won the cup when they're costing the other owners money. Who do you think will wear the failed strategy? The owners, or the guy they hired to implement it?
  39. Rollo 8>) from Belgium writes:

    Who is Wayne Gretzky?
  40. Just Wondering from Canada writes: 'F' the MLSE (if you haven't already had reason to do so)

    More hockey teams in Canada I say

    And one in Hamilton would be $$$$$ for everyone

    'S' Bettman.... Doesn't care about the game on the ice...

    Just the buddies with Scotch and Ice
  41. Steve Church from Canada writes: Canadian Friend - when Bettman inherited the Commish role, the NHL income was $400mil total. Just before the global melt, it was $2.2bil. He made some of them lots of money, and his watch served the League, the players, and the fans, very well. The new CBA was his, and it was best-of-breed. The sunbelt strategy is a whipping-boy phrase. Tampa Bay was financially fine with a good team and for a few years after; Dallas was and is the real deal; the Ducks have been to the Big Tent twice. In fact, traditional markets and teams have been at least as much trouble financially. As for where the donkey-tail pin goes, it goes nowhere because the claim of a strategy failure is simplistic illusion. It's easier to invent a 'small market strategy' that failed.
  42. chaise advis from cookstown, Canada writes:
    Time to desert the desert. Deserts don't got no snow. Snow & ice is where hockey grows.

    Cheers to Balsille . Hope you get your hockey team.
  43. the canadian friend from Romania writes: Righty-o. Phoenix, doing great. Tampa, ditto. Panthers, kicking butt and taking names at the gate. Nashville, huge success. Revenue sharing sucking sound, declining franchise values, no big deal. Carry on Capt. Bettman. The southern teams are doing just great! And I guess we've won in Afghanistan and Iraq is a peaceful oasis of democracy.
  44. the canadian friend from Romania writes: And isn't the Big Tent what the Republicans used to have? I don't think the Ducks were there though, it seems they came into existence after that tent folded.
  45. Robert Dryburgh from Canada writes: Why do they need a Board of Governors for. It is a big business money making entertainment industry. Profits and gain are the name of the gain here. Those with the cash rule.
  46. mongo in Calgary from Calgary, Canada writes: If the Coyotes are comming back to Canada they should have to return to Winnipeg where they started. Go Jets Go. Go Jets Go.
  47. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    The more I read about this the more I am getting the impression there may just be a two-pronged approach to what Balsillie is trying to accomplish:

    1) Actually securing a franchise.
    2) Becoming the 21st century maverick in the style of baseball's Curt Flood or Oakland Raiders Al Davis.

    According to Forbes in March 2009, Balsillie had a net worth of $1.7 BILLION- others say $2.5-2.7 BILLION. The bottom line being the gentleman is not in need of money, nor is he involved in an industry that will go away any time soon--financially rock solid as can be in these times.

    I am sure he is a passionate Canadian hockey patriot, yet perhaps there may be more to this story--a fella who has been spurned by some two bit New York lawyer who acts as the NHL Commissioner.

    The facts would point to a small chance of securing Phoenix--a slim chance of ever moving it. That said, the bigger picture may be to tear apart the perceived "NHL Owners Club" and its implications concerning anti-trust laws, monopolies, and franchise mobility.

    His actions this time are clear and he gives me the impression he has not lost many battles in his life-"Relentless" comes to mind.
  48. various degrees from Hamilton, Canada writes: If the move is successful and that sounds like a big if.built a new arena in Cambridge where it will be the proper size with proper parking facilities. The ding dong mayor of Hamilton assumes the owner would be paying the $150 M for upgrades to that dump in Hamilton which is in the middle of a distressed rundown area with no proper parking. Besides Cambridge is in a more centralized area for a bigger draw of fans. But first it has to happen and l wouldn't hold my breath.
  49. Edward Carson from Canada writes: Actually the best Monty Python comparison for Bettman is the Emperor in the Life of Brian.
    'Throw him to the floor centurion'

    I hope Balsillie is able to kneecap this wee twerp in court. I would love nothing more than to see Bettman doing a Rumplestilskin tantrum as he leaves the court house.
  50. Patrick Nash from Canada writes: I don't like Bettman. But I'm beginning to dislike Balsilie too. Balsilie has previously been rebuffed in his attempts to buy an NHL team. So, like a spoilt child, he tried to circumvent the NHL's rules by colluding with the Coyotes to announce bankruptcy. He got caught and again, like a spoilt child, he is whining and crying. I hope Hamilton gets a team. But I hope Balsilie doesn't own it. Love my Blackberry though.
  51. Josh Taylor from Dublin, Canada writes: Give this guy the team already. It is a win win for all. I am a Leafs fan and I am dying for the rivalry. If it works in NY it will work in the GTA.

    Get over yourself Bettman.
  52. Bryan Getslaughs from Canada writes: MLSE officials declined comment but have insisted privately that whatever losses the league has incurred from the Coyotes pale compared to the revenue that would be lost from another team in the Toronto area.

    Would like to see these numbers on this.

    As for Phoenix.... Voom? Look mate. This team wouldn't voom if you put a million volts through it. If it weren't nailed to the stadium it'd be pushing up daisies. Gone to meet its maker, the choir invisibule.
  53. the canadian friend from Romania writes: Agreed Josh. I'm a Leafs fan. Hate the Sens, love the rivalry with them. A Hamilton-Toronto rivalry would be awesome. Or Mississauga/Vaugh Cabridge/Wherever. Though I'm thinking Basillie's right about MLSE being the puppet-master behind the curtain. God (Bettman) forbid they'd have to actually ice a competitive product in order to keep the money flowing in.
  54. Cross the Border and up the Hill from Canada writes: Does this guy (Bettman) get a direct cut of the profits from Leaf sales or something? Is the guy sane? How in the hell would any other guy in his position not run towards (instead of away) from a guy like Balsillie AND when he wants to move the team to a profitable area? This doesn't make any sense. Maybe if the hockey fans protested, refused going to games, something then this little hobbit would listen a bit more. Time for his peers to take him aside and give him a talking to.
  55. Jim Petse from owings, United States writes: Neil Thomson from OttawaKanata, Canada writes: Factoid - no NHL team can locate within 80 KM of another franchise.

    Distance - Hamilton to Toronto - 79.3
    - Hamilton to Buffalo - 79.8

    Coincidence - NOT!

  56. Globefollower From Canada from Canada writes: If the NHL is an illegal cartel then so is McDonalds, Tim Hortons, Holiday Inn and every other franchise system in the world, all of which control who gets to use their brand and in what locations. The cartel argument is just sour grapes.

    As for Southern Ontario, there are already five NHL franchises in the regional economic corridor from Detroit to Montreal - Detroit, Buffalo, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal - say 16 million people. That's 1/6th of all NHL franchises servicing 1/20th of the North American population. Surely that's enough, and if we want hockey to grow as a sport we should be looking for the NHL to move franchises into markets that can attract new fans to the game, as opposed to overservicing existing fans.

    If Mr. Balsille truly loves hockey, he will keep the team in Pheonix and help it succeed there.
  57. Steve Mitchell from Canada writes: It's our own Canadian Al Davis. I thihnk Jim will succeed. Time to take the NHL back!
  58. Ken From home from Canada writes: Its simple, Gary B do not like Canada and would rather move all the teams south then let one more move north!!
  59. P D from Cambridge, Canada writes: A fan is a fan. The is no extra value to an American fan over a Canadian fan. Fill the arena's with Canadians who would love to be there.
  60. Paul I from United States writes: Canadians need to remember they outnumber Bettman and the owners. Not that it would ever happen, but leaving Canadian arenas empty for the first few games next season would send a powerful message as to who really has control of the NHL.
  61. Basser Basser from Canada writes: Globe Fower, I do not follow hockey all that much, but, It's failed, failed failed in alot of US cities and it would succeed very well in Hamilton, Whether you study economics or not, it's obvious... Move the team to a place where it can flourish, and increase operating profits for the league, That place is Hamilton Ontario Canada. It sure is not Phoenix Arizona.
  62. Bobby the K from Dreadnaught, ON, Canada writes: ~

    Bettman isn't good for the game of hockey.
    He's good for the owners, and that's why he's there.

    Much like the way the Leafs have been a crappy team for decades, yet it can be argued they have been the most successful team ever.

  63. various degrees from Hamilton, Canada writes: I am not a huge hockey fan and l think Gary Bettman is a dork,but he is the president of the NHL and as such he has to represent all the team owners. All the team owners are obviously saying stay south of the border. There is already 5 NHL teams along the border we don't need anymore. Lets remember these owners are in this for the money not to make the fans happy. If there was a snowballs chance in Hell of getting a new Canadian team the very last place l would put it would be Hamilton.
  64. Frank Godfrey from Canada writes: Globefollower, seriously, " if Mr.Balsillie truly loves hockey " he should be doing exactly what he is doing. Bringing a new team in southern Ontario, by hook or by crook, as an antidote to the rot that is MLSE and the Leafs. The NHL is acting like a bloated cartel that is ripe for lancing. A lot of Canadians are on Balsillie's wavelength and would do the same if they had his spare change.
    Today's NHL is an American concoction, aided and abetted by MLSE. The current strategy of expanding the fan base into new markets, ie the southern US, is Bettman's baby. This is about American corporate self- interest trumping the vague Canadian feeling of injustice over there being so many ( improbable ) American locales with teams .
  65. Sonny Crockett from Canada writes: Globefollower From Canada from Canada writes: "Surely that's enough, and if we want hockey to grow as a sport we should be looking for the NHL to move franchises into markets that can attract new fans to the game, as opposed to overservicing existing fans."

    I have some disagreement with this. This assumes that each region and each person is equally interested in hockey. The U.S. northeast and Southern Ontario/Quebec are densely populated but also hold hockey much higher on a personal level than those living in the US midwest etc. There are many unserviced citizens in India and China without an NHL franchise, why don't we put some teams there? Because they, like residents of phoenix, simply aren't interested in the sport, why do we need to force them to be?

    I also don't understand the argument that hockey needs to grow as a sport. Why is the goal to continue expanding the pro ranks? 30 teams is more than enough, and further expansion dilutes the talent pool and fanbase. Teams should be situated in the most supportive markets available in Canada/US. Obviously a team in Hamilton will be near capacity attendance indefinitely with huge merch sales etc, while the phoenix market refuses to support the team. The only tangible criticism the league has is that the salary cap floor will be raised by turning the floundering coyotes into a profitable team, thus admitting either the league is not imminently interested in making money or they have jurisdiction in place in the league rules that is precisely counter productive to profit and success. Either way: Bettman is a corporate tool with no fan interest in mind at all, otherwise he would embrace Jimmy B's offer.
  66. Piet F from Canada writes: I love the dig at MLSE. So true. They want to defend their boundaries so that they don't have to worry about developing talent and actually making the playoffs. Having another team in the GTA that has a chance of success would mean that they would have to think about winning for a change - maybe even making the playoffs!

    Bring on a new Ontario team...
  67. Hunkered down in the land of never ending promises from Canada writes: I think Bettman's still pissed over his character in the fictional film Bon Cop Bad Cop where the president of the league (didn't know they could find an actor short enough to play Bettman) is kidnapped by a deranged fan who was still upset over losing their team to an American city located coincidentally in the Rocky Mountains. Even the character's name "Buttman" left no doubt as to who the movie's writers were targeting.
    So it seems to me that Buttman, er Bettman has an anti Canadian bias. He'd rather see the Coyotes go anywhere but Canada. That point will be proven when the team is relocated to Vegas. It will be a success for one year and then residents and visitors will only be interested in the ice that floats in their drinks.
  68. Kman Willi from Canada writes: This is the exact reason why I, at the tender age of 23, stopped watching NHL hockey - when they move the Jets from Winnipeg to Phoenix.

    I am sorry, but as an ex-semi-pro player, I know that the NHL markets itself as hockey. It is a league.. and I would rather support leagues that give a crap about, and work with their fan base.. rather than collude for profit.
  69. P D from Cambridge, Canada writes: How about is Hamilton seperates from Canada and becomes the 51st state. We could put Americans in the seats of Copps and US Steel could open the plants again. The Ticats could join the NFL so the Argos have a better chance.
  70. Boreal Moose from Canada writes: Kman Willi from Canada writes: I would rather support leagues that give a crap about, and work with their fan base.. rather than collude for profit.


    But they're not colluding for profit. They're colluding for stupidity!

    Turning away Research In Motion's Jim from the NHL would be like Detroit turning away Toyota for parochial, prejudiced reasons that confound economic sense. Phoenix is suitable for hockey like its soil and rainfall is for golf. Unless the league is perpetually willing to irrigate the franchise with money, it will die. In Southern Ontario however, it rains down hockey fans like a monsoon.
  71. sleazy Silvester from Canada writes: 'NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has said repeatedly that the league does not want teams to relocate'

    Ya but it's easy for him to move out of Canada, maybe Balsille should try to move a Canadian team over then Bettman would praise him for staying out of the American market.

    Bettman's strategy has been to expand the league like crazy in the beginning than have enough owners on his side so he gets to stay in power, It's time the NHL got a new commissioner that understands where hockey teams will work. Bettman still doesn't realize how difficult it is to get season tickets in Ontario, maybe if he didn't have all the perks of the job, he would realize how easily hockey would sell in the Toronto area.
  72. Brian Marto from Toronto, Canada writes: This is not about hockey or the best interest of the game lets get this perfectly clear. This is a pissing match between Bettman ,NHL old boys club and a passionate hockey loving billionare . I have to agree with Grapes that you have to do things Bettman's way or else this man is smart, cunning and ruthless if you twist him the wrong way watch out. The NHL does not want anymore expansion into Canada, in fact I can see in about 20 years or so maybe just 2 or 4 teams remaining in Canada. For some reason there is some crazy desire to continue expansion into the US, Bettman has his heart set on Vegas, what utter maddness.
    When this is all over the NHL and Bettman will prevail, remember this also Bettman was a lawyer and has very powerful friends in the US Court circuits. To Mr Balsillie I applaud your desire, passion for the game we need more people like you but you are dealing with a dictator and regine that makes North Korea look like a daycare. Do not give up your dream but you must play the game that is all I will say to you.
  73. Jon A. from Canada writes: Let 'em move to Hamilton... That way there will be three loser teams to laugh at in Ontario!
  74. Goose Bay Resident Canada from Canada writes: When Hamilton was blocked from getting a NHL team a number of years ago I decided to personally boycott the NHL until Hamilton did get a team. I haven't watched a game since. I am planning on expanding my business by opening a location in Hamilton within two years. Would love to celebrate the opening by buying a set of season tickets.
  75. Chris Defend from Canada writes: The NHL commissioner is an a$$. Promoting ice hockey in the desert is a demonstrated failure. Is there a stone where his brain should be.
  76. paul y from Mississauga, Canada writes: Dear Mr Bettman, I have approach numerous times and presented the financial situation of the Phoenix Coyotes to you and the board of directors. After 13 years I can no longer fund the Coyotes, because there business is no longer viable in the Phoenix market. I have been left with no other opportunity, but too put the Phoenix Coyotes into bankruptcy. I do have some grave concerns that many other teams are failing in their local markets and my actions may lead to other governors to bolt. I really think hockey should be moved to a market where it is played and understood. I feel very strongly that the Coyotes can be business success in Southern Ontario or possibly in American Northwest (Seattle/Portland) area. Regards. Jerry Moyes I thought people would get a good kick about this email to bettman/daley. I think the real issue here is that Moyes is circumventing nhl bi-laws around how a franchise can be moved/sold. Bettman is doing everything in his power to keep the team in Phoenix by approaching Reinsdorf. However, Reinsdorf is no dummy and is going to bid for a team substantially lowered that what is offered by Balsille. Gee, this sound very similar to transactions orchestrated in Ottawa/Buffalo etc. In the end the creditors are going to be screwed if the judge takes the lower offer. The judge has to act in the best interest of all creditors. So, the only option that Bettman has is to contest the ownership and basically say that the NHL is running the Coyotes and that Moyes can not act for the company. However, they did not remove him until after the announcement was made on bankruptcy. I can see the judge looking at the nhl as bullying the owner and franchises and may rule against what the nhl is trying to stop. Plus, league rules do not apply to company in bankruptcy, because they are under different laws & judgement. If I were balsille then I would be trying to work the phone on a few governors to persuade them he is right choice for the league.
  77. slapdash dapoint from harper is not a conservative, Canada writes: "MLSE officials declined comment but have insisted privately that whatever losses the league has incurred from the Coyotes pale compared to the revenue that would be lost from another team in the Toronto area."


    laughable. sorry, leafable.
  78. Happy Camper from Canada writes: I am not necessarily a big fan of Bobble Head Bettman, but he is trying to do what any league needs, a rules Nazi. Every league has its struggles with owners trying to do things for their own gain rather that the common benefit of the league, and every league at times has struggled maintaining a cohesive strategy or vision. It is pretty clear the govenors (and likely instigated by Bobblehead) that they need dispersion through the USA to garner lucrative TV contracts. That may be a moot point over the next few years with the economy down there, but the long term view is likely right. One team, or even two teams coming back to Canada would not be the end of the world for that startegy. They have two expansions spots available any way,(32 is an ideal number).
  79. Tim Cares from Real reason, Canada writes: Expansion team fees. Probably ask for half a billion from Balsillie.
    Can distribute amongst 30 existing teams. $10 million each. $100 million each to Leafs and Sabres for territorial infringement.
  80. GRAEME BLAIR from Canada writes: "the federal Competition Bureau said sports leagues have the right to put the interests of the league ahead of the interests of an individual club owner when it comes to relocating franchises."
    Just so I'm clear on this, keeping the team in Pheonix would be in the leagues' best interests how???
  81. Brian Havelock from Winnipeg, Canada writes: Does anyone know where the Winnipeg Jets are these days?
  82. Vote for your country from Canada writes: Mr. Balsille

    Two words for you.

    Keep going!!!!
  83. Peter McLaughlin from Bedford, NS, Canada writes: I appreciate the NHL has rules and procedures about this sort of thing, but here's a guy willing to pay 100 cents on the dollar to the creditors and move the team to a profitable market, which will benefit the league longterm.

    Here we have a a big-spending, big business, hockey-loving sugar daddy who cares about the game, and is preparted to rescue a foundering team. I just don't get why Bettman and the owners aren't tripping over each other to welcome him to the fold... and one other thing: why wasn't there the same zeal by the commissioner a decade ago to keep a team in Quebec and Winnipeg?
  84. bruce t from Boston, United States writes: What a mess, no wonder the NHL is in a shambles and has a hard time pulling in a national viewership here. This will always be a regional sport down here, but the board, and Bettman don't want to believe this. If they don't grow hockey where it should be grown, I wish and think Canada should break away with its own league.
    Of course it isn't clear if all the Canadian owners are on Balsillie side either (Toronto, obviously not).
    One can dream though. Maybe 8-10 teams. Let the US franchises enjoy their southern experiment.
  85. Jondas McHooter from Canada writes: I am sure there is a totally acceptable reason why Bettman is so against this.

    Something like he has already promised to sell the Coyotes to a guy in Las Vegas who doesn't have any money.
  86. George Nikitin from Hamilton, Canada writes: MLSE has zero incentive to work toward putting a winner on the ice. It's 2009 and still no cup, with no cup in sight. Maybe another team in the market might light the appropriate fire.
  87. Bones Monseki from Canada writes: From the article:

    "The league has long insisted that its rules governing relocation are legal. It received a boost last year when the federal Competition Bureau said sports leagues have the right to put the interests of the league ahead of the interests of an individual club owner when it comes to relocating franchises."

    This might be the deal breaker. The NHL argues that leaving a team in the desert is beneficial to the long-term growth of the league. More beneficial and more important than rescuing one bleeding team and moving it to a hockey hotbed...

    I do like Balsille's arguements - sounds like he's been reading these boards!
  88. Vote for your country from Canada writes: One request to Mr. Basille when he gets this team. Please for the love of pete, could you please choose a name that sounds a little tougher than a mighty duck? Not much in a name perhaps, but seriously........
  89. George Nikitin from Hamilton, Canada writes: Why does Gary Bettman hate Canada?
  90. JP C from Canada writes: I had to laugh when I heard Daly talking about how the NHL doesn't just "run away" and "abandon its fans".

    Right, like the Winnipeg and Quebec that the NHL fought so long and hard for.

    What's going on here right now is a prime example of Napoleon Complex. Bettman has an ego as big as all outdoors to make up for... well, shall we say, other shortcomings.

    He did not care that Winnipeg, Hartford, Minnesota, or Quebec moved because they were not teams he created. But he was the point man on team location in Denver, Phoenix, Miami, Tampa, Anaheim, Raleigh, Dallas, and Columbus and so if any of those teams fail, it's a sign of his own failure.

    Most other men can learn from their mistakes, and become better people. Bettman can't do that - he blindly clings to the conviction that he is always right, smarter than everyone else, and everything he touches turns to gold.

    Why? Just to prove to everyone else that he is not some short little nebbish that isn't worth a second look.

    Unfortunately, it's the NHL that is suffering under his misrule, 2 consecutive decades of what can only be called quote-hockey-unquote.

    As for Daly? Well, every little dictator needs their burly stooge...
  91. None of your business from Winnipeg, Canada writes: Dear NHL, C/O Mr. Bettman,

    Rot in hell you lying swine.

    Love Winnipeg.
  92. EH ? from Canada writes: Backward excuse: 80 kms radius.... it is the number of fans that should matter.
    Another organization that is badly managed, by number-crunchers.
  93. Richard Keho from Canada writes: This deal centers on wether the paper signed by Moyes in Nov. gave control of his club to the NHL. If it doesn't fly in court Balsillie will own the team. If the Paper said the NHL runs the team and Moyes can't do the bankruptcy thing Balsillie is out. This looks more and more like the Preds deal all over again. Except this time there looks like a guy on board with money. Problem is, Moyes gets a hosing and the NHL if they win the case still puts money into a black hole. That's the stupidity of the whole thing. Keep a team in a city that's not a hockey town. There's always been teams moving. From Canada to the States and from State to State. They do however would detest moving back to Canada. That's Bettman. The funny thing is if there's a team in Hamilton they'll end up helping the league and teams like Atlanta, Florida and Tampa. Bettman has to go butt that's next to impossible, because he's just doing what he's told.
  94. Ob Server from Canada writes: It is a cartel. Bettman's the gatekeeper and as long as loser teams tow the party line, they get to survive. Furthermore, by supporting the cartel teams like the loser Leafs get to keep their monopoly in southern Ontario which involves little else than fielding the semblance of a team and keeping their strangle-hold on hopeful fans who have nobody else to support.

    As long as the NHL and teams like MLSE support small-time thinking like that, this city and Ontario will continue to be held back. But I guess it's no surprise they're stoking the anti-Balsillie fires because they know that they can't compete with a real operator. Better to control a bunch of supplicant governors than manage a real organization.

    The NHL is quickly losing all respectability. I support Balsillie and my advice to him is to keep hammering away until the wall starts to crumble.
  95. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: bruce t from boston, United States writes :

    "I wish and think Canada should break away with its own league."

    "Let the US franchises enjoy their southern experiment."

    If Canada broke away from the NHL (which actually isn't a bad idea in itself, and one that has crossed my mind on more than one occasion), US franchises wouldn't be able to enjoy any southern experiment as the flow of tens of millions of dollars from North of the border would cease and these teams would dry up quicker than ice in the desert.

    Paul I from Rochester made a good point about fans leaving Canadian arenas empty for the first few games of the season to drive this point home to the League's Board of Governors.

    This would never likely happen since so many Canadians are virtually addicted to their teams, but it is interesting to speculate about.

    Slainte Mhath
  96. Art Vandelai from Burlington, Canada writes: various degrees from Hamilton, Canada writes: If the move is successful and that sounds like a big if.built a new arena in Cambridge where it will be the proper size with proper parking facilities. The ding dong mayor of Hamilton assumes the owner would be paying the $150 M for upgrades to that dump in Hamilton which is in the middle of a distressed rundown area with no proper parking. Besides Cambridge is in a more centralized area for a bigger draw of fans. But first it has to happen and l wouldn't hold my breath.

    No way he builds in Cambridge. Hamilton Downtown has more than enough parking. Check Google Earth - there are more surface parking lots in the city than actual buildings. Plus it sits at the end of a GO line, and on a proposed LRT, with actual downtown amenities (bars, etc) around it. It's better when fans don't have to drive to the games like in Ottawa. Helps out the concessions (beer) sales too. Cambridge would be isolated, cost more to build and be completely auto-dependent.
  97. Wise Old Man from Canada writes: Wake up folks! It's all about business. I suspect the real reason behind Bettman's disapproval is that his friends are likely to lose money with the addition of a new team too close to Toronto.
  98. Vote for your country from Canada writes: bruce t from Boston, United States
    Sir, we don't need to form a breakaway league or anything. What we would like is for Bettman to take his head out of his butt and admit where the hockey hotbed is and always will be. 80KM my foot. That's rubbish.
    Love those Bruins.
  99. Darren X3 from Toronto, Canada writes: Globefollower: "As for Southern Ontario, there are already five NHL franchises in the regional economic corridor from Detroit to Montreal - Detroit, Buffalo, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal - say 16 million people. That's 1/6th of all NHL franchises servicing 1/20th of the North American population. Surely that's enough, and if we want hockey to grow as a sport we should be looking for the NHL to move franchises into markets that can attract new fans to the game, as opposed to overservicing existing fans."

    I think you are the only person on the planet who thinks that Southern Ontario (population: 10m die hard hockey nuts) is "overserviced" by the Toronto Maple Leafs, a team that sells out every game in spite of being consistently awful.
  100. Darren X3 from Toronto, Canada writes: "MLSE officials declined comment but have insisted privately that whatever losses the league has incurred from the Coyotes pale compared to the revenue that would be lost from another team in the Toronto area."

    "revenue lost", for WHO? A franchise in Phoenix is a failure, and costs THE LEAGUE money.
    A franchise in Hamilton would be a roaring success, but might cost MLSE some money. (although they will still sell out every single night from now until the end of time).

    Big difference.
  101. Overtaxed and underlaid from Canada writes: this is better than the playoffs...

    (/munches popcorn, waits for next article)
  102. Guelph Storm OHL Fan from Blue, Canada writes: I bet Bettman would change his tune if for some reason the Coyotes could move to Las Vegas or Kansas City, - the next two places on his agenda. I guess he forgot that he oked move of Quebec City and Winnipeg to move to the US, instead of standing behind these two teams and supporting them.
  103. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: A question and a point :

    Where is this nonsense about a 80 km radius coming from ?

    I am sure that it is etched in stone somewhere, but where exactly ?

    As I also pointed out earlier on this thread, the distance from Hamilton to Buffalo is 109 km (and not the 79.8 km that was quoted by another poster) so it is clear that the existing NHL franchise in Buffalo is not THE impediment...

    Does anyone else get the impression that this league is being run by a bunch of weasly lawyers who seem to making up their own rules on the fly ?

    Slainte Mhath
  104. Sober Second Thought from Toronto, Canada writes: If the NHL gives Canada the shaft once again then TSN and CBC will have three less viewers in my household.

    I am beginning to get hooked on the EPL and the Setanta broadcasts anyway....
  105. Derek Holtom from Swan River, Canada writes: I heard Bettman blather on about sticking up for the fans
    Southern American fans maybe
    he had no problems kissing Winnipeg, Minnesota and Quebec City goodbye
    He already brought a team back to Minnesota.
    Not sure if Winnipeg or Quebec City could support a team in today's crazy market, but I know Bettman doesn't want to know.
    I also know what fans in those two cities think of Bettman. He is a weasel, plain and simple.
  106. michael pray from Hamilton, Canada writes: Interestingly as this story explodes in Ontario, it occupies the number 8 position on the sports section of the Arizona Republic website, indicating that nobody really cares about the Coyotes in Arizona.

    Maybe Bettman should take the blinders off!
  107. Oswaldo I from Canada writes: If the NHL is being insistent on its 80km rule, then I expect them to force the Islanders and Devils to move farther away from the Rangers.
  108. George BrownIII from Christmas Island writes: The magic words in the copy is "permission" of the NHL. A commodity that can be traded amoung lawyers. Sounds more like greasing some NHL palms.
  109. John Smith from Canada writes: If 80 km is a problem, perhaps they could move the Leafs somewhere else. ;-)
  110. sonny l from Canada writes: What happens when we have 4 then 5 then 7 teams in and just outside Ontario? The end of the league? Probably.

    Whatever, once London has a team you know it'll be over.
  111. JT Charles from Timbuktuu, Canada writes: All come on folks, what this all REALLY boils down to is if HAMILTON gets an NHL team, then TORONTO will want one too!!!!!
  112. RJJ FromThornhill from Thornhill, Canada writes: Can we call this battle Bet vs Bals?

    Say it out loud a few times. See how many people mis-hear what you're saying.
  113. Greg Out West from Canada writes: So you can move a Canadian team south to the US but you can't move a US team north to Canada ? Doesn't this dope understand that Canada has the greatest hockey fans in the world not to mention the fact that Canada is a breeding gound for some of the best players in the world.
  114. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Miller

    Re the 80km distance rule, I have a some questions for you,

    Do you know what defines the 80km distance? Is it arena to arena? City hall to City Hall? Or border to border?

    What have you based your distances on?

    The distinction is important, as we can come up with three different measurements, some that fall within, some not.

  115. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    R Miller from Halifax writes

    80 km radius coming from ?
    Competition Bureau is reviewing a section of the NHL's constitution that deals with the "territorial rights" of the league and its member clubs.

    According to Article 4.1 of the league's constitution, "each member shall have exclusive territorial rights in the city in which it is located and within 50 miles of that city's corporate limits," known as the club's "home territory."

    Section 4.2 of the NHL's rules sets out an absolute prohibition over the proposed relocation of existing franchises by declaring that "No member shall transfer its club and franchise to a different city or borough."

    Section 4.3 also grants each team exclusive control over its "home territory," and each club can prohibit hockey games from being played in its "home territory" without their consent.

    More importantly, section 4.3 states that "no franchise shall be granted for a home territory within the home territory of a member, without the written consent of such member." In other words, existing hockey teams have the individual right to veto the relocation of other clubs within an 80-kilometre radius of their own market.
  116. Desmond Whitton from Canada writes: Copps is one of the last arenas to keep its original name and not be named after some corporation. I really hope the Hammer gets a team this time. Besides Hamilton is over 80km away from Toronto, isn't it?
  117. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Mr Carriere

    How did you read my post and reply in a single minute? Impresssive work for a friday morning.

  118. Desmond Whitton from Canada writes: There's no motivation for the Leafs to better their team since they have a monopoly in the region. They haven't won the cup since '67, and they're clearly more concerned with their money monopoly than putting a good team together. How people continue to support the Leafs is beyond me.
  119. A C from Albertario, Canada writes:
    Clearly the problem is the 12 years in the desert.

    According to tradition, they have to spend 28 more years out there before they can return to the promised land of hockey.

  120. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes: J

    Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Mr Carriere

    How did you read my post and reply in a single minute? Impresssive work for a friday morning.
    Hey Jude....good title for a song....1st time you heard that...

    Actually I was responding to my Maritimes buddy about 10 posts before yours. I saw yours..then had the same thought. Good Friday to you--hope that helped 80 km from the city limits.
  121. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: Jude Hannaford & R. Carriere from Canada :

    Good stuff ...

    Finally, some meat to digest here...

    It appears that the restrictions would apply "...50 miles (Note : American units) of that city's corporate limits"

    What the heck does that mean ?

    Does the yardstick start at the exisiting franchise's arena, their head office or their City's limits, I wonder ?

    Regardless, it would appear from this information that MLSE would have to provide "written consent" to Balsillie to establish a NHL franchise in Hamilton...

    Slainte Mhath
  122. Happy Camper from Canada writes: Anyone else sick of the whole pro sports system? Bunch of over paid people bickering. I love the game of hockey but stuff like this is just one big turn off. Over paid players, bickering suits at the top looking for tax payer handouts to support stadiums etc. Just turns me off the game.

    It is all about money not the game or the fans.

    Have a great weekend and go outside and enjoy your favorite sport!
  123. Informed Content from Ottawa, Canada writes: OK, let's assume the governors want to keep Bettman because - let's be honest - league revenues are actually up.

    They are up because he has secured TV money, although many people say he screwed that deal, too. Nonetheless, there is money pouring into the NHL/ownership coffers.

    In order for that plan, which - let's be honest again - is about securing short money, to work he needs teams in large TV markets (at the behest of the TV moguls). Phoenix qualifies, despite being a poor hockey market. So this revenue goes to propping up losing propositions like the Coyotes because it is part of the TV revenue strategy. Then they all share the revenue. Only a few (Moyes, perhaps) get screwed.

    So why take more short money? Save the Coyotes however you want, Mr. Bettman, and ask Mr. Balsillie for $400 million to start an expansion franchise in Southern Ontario, a viable hockey market.

    Everyone (except for a few expendable unlucky ones) can enjoy their short money and hockey fans actually get a break.
  124. ex pat from Cobourg from Memphis, United States writes: Wouldn't it be great if the Judge is a closeted hockey fan? He could tell the NHL, "Since you gentleman are making your argument around the premise of doing what is in the league's best interest, I am ruling that you just move the Atlanta, Florida, Tampa, Phoenix, and Nashville franchises to Halifax, Quebec, Hamilton, Winnipeg and Seattle. Case adjourned."
  125. Pete H from Canada writes: How ironic would it be. Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment being forced through competition to put a quality team on the ice. What don't they and Bettman understand about competition?
  126. slapdash dapoint from harper is not a conservative, Canada writes: just wondering, when calculating the distance fom toronto to hamilton, is the depth of the hole the leafs reside in being counted?
  127. charles ANTHONY from Canada writes: Give hockey back to the fans and get rid of sleazy New York lawyers. Bettman has destroyed affordability and we treat hockey players better than war heroes.
  128. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Mr Carriere

    You owe me a dollar. That's the price I charge for mentioning the song, paymeny is expected within the week;)

    I have another question (another=many), before Toronto became the Mega City, where were the lines drawn? As a city grows, does the beginning of the 80km go with it?

    If it does indeed grow with the city, isn't it true that the NHL is at the mercy of local goverment when it comes time to define these borders. It seems to me that this work against Gary's battle line of protecting the NHL's right to uphold it's constitution.

    Could the radius rule be disputed in a court of law on the basis that the NHL has no control over it's so called home territories, therefore making the rule unenforceable?

  129. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: First off...all teams have a "territorial-veto" within 80 kms. from the metropolitan area. This is not city limits, whoever said corporate city limits, etc. So, with respect to Toronto, one can assume that this will encompass everything within 80 kms. of the GTA boundaries.

    Either way, it really doesn't matter. There is no dispute that Hamilton is where Balsillie wants to move the team, and that this will be within the 80 kms. The issue is whether the "territorial-veto" is a) an enforceable restrictive covenant in the first place (in contract); and b) whether such a restrictive covenant and other provisions/rules under the NHL Constitution are contrary to s.45, or 78/79 of the Competition Act. For the record, not much has changed in recent years within the NHL Constitution, so I would imagine that thinking the Competition Bureau is going to change their mind on such matters is overly-optimistic on Balsillie's part.
  130. Hernando Villanueva from Anda lucia, Canada writes: R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: It appears that the restrictions would apply "...50 miles (Note : American units) of that city's corporate limits" What the heck does that mean ?

    Excellent post earlier re Comp Bureau. Good question on measure..

    A citys corporate limits are the defined territirial boundary re taxation and by law creation in their corporate charter, so toronto would not measure from a central point, the arena or city hall, but from the actual legal city boundary which is much further out, thus the 80 km for Torontos' boundary probaly easily engulfs Hamilton I would surmise....
  131. Will Farnaby from writes: The NHL is a farce, presided over by the Clown-in-Chief.
  132. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: It appears that the restrictions would apply "...50 miles (Note : American units) of that city's corporate limits"

    What the heck does that mean ?
    Miller from Halifax,
    Jude Hannafor

    I just do this for fun ( But I would acept research donations to be sent to my fav. charity World Vision..) but my guess would be the actually city limit of the incorporated city:

    "The council of the City of Toronto incorporated under the City of Toronto Act, 1997..."
  133. sean paul from Canada writes: bettman is very determined to be the bronze statue on the "founder of american hockey" monument. canadians really annoy him with their bitter remarks about how they love the game. he seems to want canada to be a hockey players pool for the great american hockey league, which wouldn't really be dedicated to hockey but the u$ dollar.
    many people (jocks) in phoenix aren't all that interested in hockey, they're football fans. bettman doesn't care what the "little people" want, it's what the money wants. bettman has blinders on. he can't see that he could put another team into ontario and still expand in the northern u.s. he sees it as a "retreat."
    money baffles thought.
  134. Dr. Glenn Marshall from Canada writes: Am I the only one who does not give a sh..t about all of this.
  135. Slander Us from Canada writes: Trucker - you need to keep in mind the NFL when it comes to territorial rights. The NFL had them in their constitution as well, then Al Davis sued the league on the basis that they were in contravenetion of anti-trust and competition laws. Davis won - and the NFL's territory rules were deemed illegal. The NFL fought and appealed that ruling to the highest courts they could - and lost evey step of the way. If the same challenege is put to the NHL, they too will lose (the precedence is set). Territorial rights are the least of Balsillie's worries - he absolutely will win that fight in US courts. The NHL will not succeed where the NFL failed, and trying to do so would result in more lost money for the league. Every other issue he's facing won't be so easy.
  136. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: Hernando Villineuva from Andra lucia, Canada writes :

    "A citys corporate limits are the defined territorial boundary re. taxation and by law creation in their corporate charter, so toronto would not measure from a central point, the arena or city hall, but from the actual legal city boundary which is much further out, thus the 80 km for Toronto's coundary probably easily engulfs Hamilton I would surmise."

    Good post...

    That's my take as well except the actual wording is 50 miles (Not 80 km)...

    Hannaford raises a excellent point on the idea that a city's corporate limits are flexible, but I doubt that a legal challenge would be successful on that basis...

    Bottom line seems to be that MLSE can either provide Balsillie "written consent" for this or they could "veto the relocation."

    Slainte Mhath
  137. Carl Hansen from Canada writes: There was no mention of the NHL taking over control of the Coyotes last summer. I'm sure Moyes' lawyers read the papers he signed.
  138. Informed Content from Canada writes: Regarding the 50 miles issue, it's Buffalo who should be most concerned. Hamilton is a stone's throw away and the Sabres are not a powerhouse hockey legacy, in no danger of losing fans, I mean ticket buyers.

    Maybe Balsillie should just orchestrate a Sabres bankruptcy and buy that team. It's just about where he wants it, geographically-speaking...
  139. R Miller from Halifax, Canada writes: Now, here's the interesting part...

    There's a post up there that says :

    "Peddie said on record last week that another team in Southern Ontario would be good for the Leafs..."

    Hey, it was a lawyer that made this comment so who really knows ?

    But if that statement is true, Balsillie shouldn't really have much trouble with any of this...

    Balsillie paid his money...

    We just solved all the legal mumbo jumbo that the judges and lawyers will mull over for an eternity in less than a morning...

    Badda-Bing... We're done for lunch...

    Slainte Mhath
  140. Richard Thomas from Stafford, United States writes: Moyes is correct. If the court does the right thing, it will support Moyes. Bettman and the rest of NHL senior management should be fired for incompetence. We have four outstanding playoff series going now; we don't want to hear Bettman BS about issues that he should stay out of.
  141. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander: U.S. Anti-Trust laws apply in the U.S., not in Canada. Moyes can challenge the NHL Constitution if he wants to sell the team to move it somewhere in the U.S., but he wants to sell it to a willing buyer who wants to move it to Canada. The Leafs and Buffalo will use their territorial-veto which encompasses a geographic region that is within Canada. Therefore, it will fall upon Canadian laws. As for the Davis case, something that many people have failed to realize is that the NFL Constitution at the time had no objective and reasonable criteria laid out that detailed legitimate reasons when a team would/could be relocated. After that case, every major league sports league in North America did just that; included criteria within their constitution to say what a certain market/franchise needed to have in order to successfully qualify for relocation or acquiring a franchise. In this case, the NHL has certain criteria that they will argue, no matter what happens, that their "blocking" of the relocation is completely legit. because the move doesn't meet the objectives set forth in their Constitution. Davis won because there was no legitimate argument to say that Oakland vs. L.A. would cause detriment to the league.
  142. Western Clods from Vancouver, Canada writes:
    What the fans need is a smart lawyer to launch a class action lawsuit against the NHL for illegally limiting competition in Southern Ontario.

    That would catch their attention. And we would win.
  143. Chico Tanto from Toronto, Canada writes: Not a big hockey fan here but who in the right mind would move an ice hockey team to a desert to begin with, like there were no other sports in the US to compete for the revenue?
  144. Mister Hockey from Hearst, Canada writes: The Leafs need protection from what? For years, they've increased tickets prices to extraordinary levels while providing an inferior product for years. With such arrogance & total disregard for its fan base, it's an insult to our intelligence that they would claim another team in the area would hurt them. It's a blasphemy!!

    The Leafs only need protection against their own incompetence!!
  145. Slander Us from Canada writes: Trucker - that's actually incorrect. The NHL is the corporation that created and enforces the territory rules. The NHL is incoporated in the US and headquartered in the US. As such, they are subject to US law, not Canadian law. What matters in these cases is the home base for the corporation - that would be New York. So the NFL precedent absolutely applies. ESPN had a legal analyst go over all of this the other day. In terms of anti-trust laws, it does not matter one iota what rules the league has on this - it is a direct contravention of anti-trust laws to limit to location of a business.
  146. Peter Stern from Toronto, Canada writes: Michael Enright from Toronto, Canada writes: "It sounds like a lot of lawyer double talk to me.

    Interesting point though on the anti-competitive stance from the Balsillie side. But isn't it a mute point to be arguing about competition practices (deemed legal by the Canadian Competition Bureau) in a country outside the US. This judge's decision has no legal recourse outside the US borders."

    Actually that's not true... because if the judge rules against him, then he might be able to sue under NAFTA.

    And let's be honest... the Canadian Competition Bureau doesn't do squat compared to the USA's anti-trust system.
  147. mike mc from Miramichi NB, Canada writes: WE all knew BAGGMANN is a weasel who moved two teams to US from Canada and now says he doesn't favour moving teams. But now we can see that "Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment" are also scheming behind the scenes to protect their dollar at the expense of the hockey fans in Ontario and Canada. I for one will not be buying any more Maple Leaf items and will now cheer for the CANUCKS until we see a new team in Ontario. Also let us not forget to see what a LAP DOG Bill Daly has become. Like a sh$T house rat at the beck and call of BAGGMANN. Lower then a snake in a wheel rut
  148. slapdash dapoint from harper is not a conservative, Canada writes: Carl Hansen from Canada writes: There was no mention of the NHL taking over control of the Coyotes last summer. I'm sure Moyes' lawyers read the papers he signed.


    handing over voting rights (and to which matters those votes apply) and some operations is a far cry ceding ownership and the rights therein. if moynes did not specifically agree to transfer ownership to the nhl, bettman et al will doubt fail in quashing the bankruptcy movement.

    as to relocation, i somewhat agree with trucker. that ebing said, do not underestimate the power a) of canadian gov't and it's bodies to follow in step with the US, and b) local concerns to sway matters that would see benefit to the region at large, MLSE be damned.

    i hope this is the undoing of the NHL in it's entirety. then, bettman, i wish very much you get your statue.
  149. Arnold Fine from Vancouver, Canada writes: Unfortunately, the NHL likely does have (and should have) final say on location/relocation of teams. I suspect is is legal, however immorally they utilize this power. For the life of me I don't understand why any franchisor would want to maintain a franchisee who has little if not NO chance of being profitable...Phoenix has spoken loud and clear...they are NOT interested in hockey. Along comes a billionaire who appears to love the game, and provides what is likely to be a winning scenario. I do think it is legitimate for Buffalo and Toronto to have a lot of say....that is also the right of franchisees. If I owned a Mcdonald's on 3rd St. it does no one any good to have one right beside me. To overly criticize MLSE seems unfair.

    If there really is someone so silly to buy the team and leave it in Phoenix then I think okay, go ahead. I can't believe that will happen. So, short of that, I thinkthe HNL owners should tell Gary to get los.
  150. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: I think the NHL also maintains a corporate head office in Montreal, so they're a dual-citizen entity if that's true. Not sure how that would work with relocation litigation.

    I think the most damning evidence against the NHL in their preliminary fight (re: who's in control) is that they "fired" Moyes after he filed for Chapter 11. In my mind, that illustrates that Moyes was in fact the owner, and had only signed over his voting rights, not the ownership itself.

    I've said it before, but it bears repeating: Haw, haw, haw.
  151. Campbell McDougall from Berlin, Germany writes: Tampa Bay winning the Cup once does not make the Sunbelt expansion strategy a success. The NHL has thought that you can throw millions of marketing dollars at an audience to educate them and entice them to come to games - that can work . . . temporarily.

    But to succeed year in and year out through good years and bad, you need a legitimate, passionate hockey audience, as they had in Winnipeg and Quebec.

    Tell me if that exists in Tampa and how things are going for them down there now, just a few short years after winning it all?
  152. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander: Maybe ESPN's legal analyst should explain that to Canadian authorities then. I would imagine that the Competition Bureau and the Competition Law Division of the Department of Justice in Canada don't agree on this in the very slightest. U.S. Anti-Trust laws do not apply to Canada - seems pretty simple to me. Even if the U.S. would think they control our companies, their laws don't. As for saying I'm incorrect - I am not too worried about my view on this, I actually know I'm right. As to legal issues, such should be left to those that actually know what Competition Law/Anti-Trust laws are. It doesn't matter if NHL offices are in Bangladesh, because it isn't even in control of any of the franchises in the first place (from a legal standpoint - debateable with Phoenix right now though). The NHL is considered a joint-venture, and each team is incorporated, etc. within whatever State, Province or Country that will have its own laws that govern corporate/commercial behaviour. The By-laws and constitution that each member franchise try to enforce must be in accordance with the laws of where the franchise is, not where the Constitutional Authority has its head office. Any company that operates in Canada must operate according to...the Competition Act. Therefore, where the Leafs or Sabres try to claim territorial-veto rights that would apply within the boundaries of Canada, the question is whether such a territorial-veto is permitted under the Competition Act, and whether such is enforceable under contract. Any other questions? Next time you want to listen to ESPN for legal advice, you should put down your remote and read something.
  153. Slander Us from Canada writes: Another point working against Bettman and his supposed Reisdorf offer that isn't being discussed by the NHL: that offer was based on 100% financing, with no actual money coming out of Reisdorf's pockets. Balsillie's offer features no financing, with all money paid upfront. As the recent economic collapse has taught us, anything that is 100% financed is doomed to fail. The bankruptcy judge, along with each of the Coyotes' secured creditors will look very favourably on an offer featuring zero financing. No matter what happens, Balsillie has nothing to lose, while the NHL will be embarassed when the books are made public. This is just one of five franchises in immenent danger of financial collapse. If this fails for Balsillie, he will very likely have the opportunity with another franchise (Tampa was reportedly in talks with Balsillie as recently as 2 weeks ago). As it stands, Atlanta, Tampa, Florida and Nashville (in addition to Phoenix) are on very shaky footing. The NHL - even if they win this round - will probably have to do it all over again with another franchise soon enough. This will cost the owners a lot of money with little to no benefit - how many will be onside for the next lawsuit? Or the one after that? Ballsillie has something the NHL does not: a large supply of cash that is not in any danger of disappearing.
  154. Graeme Bradley from London, Canada writes: Anyone know what Bettman will get if he can force the deal from his pal from Chiicago through? There must be some reward for him because, as much as he outwardly hates Jim, this is just a bad business decision. Forcing the team to stay in Phoenix and making his employers continue to spend their profits to keep it afloat!!!! He's getting something, wake up owners and stop feeding Napoleon.
  155. Slander Us from Canada writes: Very true I Alafrate (great name BTW). If the NHL was really incontrol of this franchise as they assert, why was Daly only made the head yesterday? I said it before, but this challenge re: who owns the team is nothing more than a stall tactic by the NHL to buy themselves time. And, fo ronce, it is actually a good plan - but in the end all it will buy is time, nothing more.

    Also, the NHL does have an office in Canada - but it's in Toronto now. Unfortunately for the NHL, they are incorporated in the US, not Canada, so US law applies. Not only that, but our PM, Premier and even David Miller are in full support of this move - any Canadian court would take that into account.
  156. PJ Swenson from San Jose, CA, United States writes: I don't think in any sense of the word you can describe the legal battle Al Davis waged as "successful". It basically wrecked 2 seperate football markets. Imagine the Toronto media horde at their most negative, multiply it by 10, and that is what it is like following the Raiders in the Bay Area.

    I am probably one of the biggest supporters of the Coyotes and hockey fans in Phoenix, but I still haven't seen an owner or an ownership group step up to keep the team in Arizona. How much lower the new offer is will shed light on what lead to the abrupt bankruptcy filing by Moyes.

    According to several reports the Coyotes Arena lease is one of the worst in the league. They subsidise parking to the point that it costs them for fans to park instead of generating revenue, traffic to get to games is bad, there aren't enough mass transit solutions, and the competing building in downtown Phoenix draws many entertainment acts. It has been a major factor in the Coyotes losing money year after year.

    If there is no new owner, and no new arena deal, then move the team to Hamilton. Simple.
  157. Slander Us from Canada writes: Trucker - you seem to have ignored something very important: the NHL is incorporated in the US NOT in Canada. Therefore, they are subject to American laws. If they want to abolish their corporate status in the US and incorporate themselves in Canada, then you're correct. Further, the NHL is based in the US, Buffalo (in case you weren't familiar) is in the US, Phoenix is in the US - so 3 of 4 parties involved in this are in the US. So do you really think the courts will decide that Canadian law will trump US law when 75% of the entities involved are US-based? Also, the territorial rules are set by the NHL - not the Toronto Maple Leafs; as the NHL is an American entity, Canadian law has no bearing on those proceedings whatsoever. Of course, that is moot because THE NHL IS INCORPORATED IN THE US; once more for you: as a US coporation, they are bound by US law. Period. That's the law whether you agree or not.
  158. stefan stoyan from toronto, Canada writes: BETTMAN MUST GO!
  159. Edward Carson from Canada writes: Slander - very good point, however, it gets a little with the fact that the head office was in Toronto until Bettman took over. As for Canadian laws, well remember when the Raptors tried to get out of paying the health premium because none of their staff (at the time) was Canadian and therefore never received OHIP coverage? Herr Dalton made them pay anyways so obviously some Canadian laws do apply.
  160. Campbell McDougall from Berlin, Germany writes: TO Steve Church:

    OK Steve lets talk about Atlanta? About Nashville? About Florida? Stalwart franchise all.

    And why does any talk about what lame duck draws these cities are in actual hockey towns in Canada? Even in New York or Detroit. Even with a couple of exciting stars on the club, who gets excited about Atlanta coming to town?

    And I don't buy that the Sunbelt strategy was the owners. Bettman has hooked his entire brand on this vision and has been said in the space countless times - it has failed miserably.
  161. Sonny Crockett from Canada writes: London England currently has 5 football teams in the Premiere League and it seems to be working out ok for them. Stupid Bettman. He should stay 80km away from Canada to avoid an a$$ whooping.
  162. Cactus Puck from Canada writes: Steve Church - Bang on with your post about relocation. If Basillie is successful in his bid to move to Hamilton, there would be nothing to prevent any American or Canadian team moving anywhere they like at any time. Ottawa for example, could move to NY City simply because it's one of the top revenue markets.
  163. slapdash dapoint from harper is not a conservative, Canada writes: even if i was stoned, which i should be, your last post is wrong, not for many reason, but for one: every LEGAL entity is bound by the territory in which they operate. if they operate in several, they are bound by laws that are local to the specific operation.

    many contracts stipuate that proceedings and operations will be subject to laws of a particular jurisdiction, but that is only relevant should a trial be required, in which case both parties having agreed to a particular jurisdiction would set forth there.

    otherwise, operationally, local laws apply. otherwise, what is a sovereign nation?
  164. Neil Garret from Canada writes: Rule of Law? What rule of law. A willing buyer and a willing Seller can't conduct business ? Is this the North American free market, rule of law governed system or the fricking Kingdom of Saudi Arabia where Beetman and his goons are King?
    They want to protect their buddies the Toronto gang who run that milking machine called MLSE.
    Which produces a 3rd rate product with a 4th rate team and still makes money.

    We need the "Hamilton Blackberries" so we can support a REAL HOCKEY team in Southern Ontario..

    I want ROAYALTY for coming uop with the name for the future club based in Hamilton.
  165. Cactus Puck from Canada writes: Prediction: This doesn't fly and Basillie starts a rival league. Here come the Toronto Toros once again.
  166. John __ from Westy, Canada writes: They could move the Coyotes to Portland or Seattle. Better yet, contract the league and make all teams more profitable.
  167. Slander Us from Canada writes: That's true Edward. I would assume that was illegal for the Raps to do because they are a Canadian-owned team (MLSE being incorporate in Canada). My guess is that's why they couldn't get out of that. Like I said before, if the territorial rights were made by the Toronto Maple Leafs, Canadian Law would apply, but they're not.

    But all-in-all, how ugly is this going to get for the NHL? With 4 great playoff series going on, the media SHOULDbe focussed on the match-up of the games best in Malkin-Crosby vs Ovechkin ... but the playoffs are being completely ignored nationally in the US in favour of this story. Heck, even in Canada this story is getting more rpint than the playoffs. Regradless of the outcome, this will not end well for the NHL. This league cannot afford more negative press in the US.
  168. Slander Us from Canada writes: very trun slapdash - and that's what I'm getting at: all of the parties involved at this point are US-based (Ballsillie's offer was made through the courts in Arizona, so it would be guided by US law). The TMLs would be a small player later in the game - so Canadian law is absolutely moot at this point.
  169. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander: Are you joking? MLSE is the one that attempts to enforce the territorial-veto - not the NHL. The NHL is the organization that says that MLSE's use of the territorial veto is legal, simply because it is their position that the NHL Constitutional provisions are legal, within the U.S. and Canada, under the Competition Act and U.S. Anti-Trust laws.
  170. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: BTW Slander: You are simply incorrect. None of this is really an opinion, it is exactly how it would go. If you try to enforce U.S. corporate policies, Constitutions, By-laws, etc. on Canadian soil, Canadian laws apply. End of story. You should really move on with this one.
  171. Ian Winsor from Milton, ON, writes: I think the NHL and the Leafs should stop worrying about the loss of fan-base if a second team comes to K/W or Hamilton. They are starting to lose me as a fan because (a) they are a losing team (b) none of their owners impresses me as wanting to win over maximizing profit (c) the tickets are not available to average joe's like me and (d) even if the tickets were available, I would have to skip a mortgage payment to go to a game.

    I decided many years ago to only go to a leafs game if the tickets were free. That happens to me about once every 2 seasons.

    The atmoshere at the ACC sucks. All the guys in the suits in the lower bowl are not in their seats at the start or end of periods, they don't make noise, and no matter what the score, they leave with 10 minutes left in the third so they and their SUV can beat the traffic back home to Richmond Hill or Oakville or wherever.

    I love the atomsphere in the Bell Centre. Real fans have the best tickets, make noise and support the team. The nosebleeds are affordable for regular people. If Jim B. can bring that sort of hockey to southern Ontario, I am all for it!
  172. Slander Us from Canada writes: Sorry Trucker - wrong again. The NHL enforces the territorial rights on behalf of the teams - it's in their constitution. If this went to court, the NHL would be fighting on behalf of the Leafs, not the other way around. Read my last post - this is moot at this point anyway. At this stage of the fight, only US entities are involved. The Leafs' concerns have zero bearing on what is going on in the courts right now. I'm done discussing this with you.

    Quote from Daly this morning: "The only person who generates additional cash out of the Balsillie bid for relocation to Hamilton would be Jerry Moyes" ... shouldn't the other owners be very concerned that this is the leagues position? He's bascially saying that the owners' rights are not as important as the leagues - even though it is the owners assuming financial responsibility. If I were an owner of one of the shaky franchises, this line of thinking would scare me. They now know that the NHL doesn't care about owners losing money or doing what is best for them (even though they are the ones losing millions). What a business model! I'm sure there must be hundreds of people chomping at the bit to get a franchise knowing this!
  173. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: "The only person who generates additional cash out of the Balsillie bid for relocation to Hamilton would be Jerry Moyes"

    This statement is mind boggling.

    Should that not be the concern here anyway? As a owner who has lost 300 million should he not be allowed to recover as much of his losses as possible regarless of the effect it has on the NHL?

  174. R M from Toronto, Canada writes: I just enjoy anything that makes MLSE squirm, this is great!
  175. Metro Man from Toronto, Canada writes: I so love the genius in the comments at G&M….and the misleading information is fun too…but I digress. If anyone out REALLY believes that this is Gary Bettman vs. Jim Balsillie, then maybe you should step back and realize a few facts. Firstly, the courts cannot rule in favour of Balsillie or they will destroy the concept of franchising in North America – thereby allowing a McDonalds on every corner, three Timmies per block etc. Territorial rights are a major component of the franchise agreement, the franchisor sets the parameters of the territorial rights prior to issuing any franchise. Simple fact, the Leafs and even the Sabres have absolutely NOTHING to win by enabling this to happen, and they have gazillions of dollar to lose….Simple decision isn’t it? The second reason that this will never happen is that Balisillie is rogue and militant at it – he’s a greedy billionaire who believe that his own stuff don’t stink! If Balsillie would play by the rules that are implied by the league’s franchise agreements, he wouldn’t have this issue. Even Al Davis owned the team before he went after the league. In other words Jimbo, join the group before you try to change the group. If Jim had gone into Pittsburgh or Nashville, bought the team, then a year or two later come to Garey and MLSE and said, “listen guys, this can’t work and here is why – we need to look at moving this team to Hamilton and it’s for the good of the league and here’s why”, then I am fairly sure the league would have, if nothing else, listened and considered his plight. This league is compiled of owners with as much and more money than our Jimmy has, and each and every one of them has an ego as big of bigger than Balsillie’s. Do you honestly believe that they want to hear from a tech snob on the outside with no understanding of the inner working of the league how to run their business? Absolutely NOT.
  176. Jack Rip from Canada writes: Neil Thomson from OttawaKanata, Canada writes: " Factoid - no NHL team can locate within 80 KM of another franchise.

    Distance - Hamilton to Toronto - 79.3
    - Hamilton to Buffalo - 79.8"

    Nope. Go to the directtion finder in Google Maps

    AC Centre to Copps : 66.2 km
    Copps to HSBC Arena, Buffalo: 106 km

    Nice theory, but it doesn't agreee with the facts.
  177. Ron in calgary from Canada writes: This is a PR nightmare for the NHL. Gary-legal does not equal ethical. You have come across as very unethical and the perceptuion by many, including me, is that the NHL does not give a flying f*#k for the Canadian fan. This one you may not recover from. While I still love my Flames, they may very quickly become irrelevent to me and to others depending on how the governors handle this. Perception is reality folks and I perceive myself, the Candian hockey fan, as a nobody.
  178. Ian Winsor from Milton, ON, writes: Hey metro man: the Leafs won't be "losing" any money off me, because they aren't making any off me right now. Their product is always sold out. OK, so there is my LeafsTv subscription, but I will keep that even if I become a Hamilton Coyotes season ticket holder.
  179. A C from Albertario, Canada writes:

    Campbell McDougall writes: Tampa Bay winning the Cup once does not make the Sunbelt expansion strategy a success.

    How about Tampa Bay winning it, Anaheim winning it, and Carolina winning it, all in the last five years?

  180. Edward Carson from Canada writes: Bettman took the head office out of Canada and now he'll take the game out of Canada. He needs removed and I hope this accomplishes that.
  181. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: This territorial-rights thing is killing me. Anything with a postal code beginning with a the letter "M" counts towards the territory.

    Hamilton is within Toronto's grip... and so are Cambridge and Kitchener, depending on where their corporate city limits are.

    So, to measure, I used the Metro Zoo, since it is practically on the border of Pickering. In that direction, Toronto's territorial rights go to Cobourg.

    To the west, I used Woodbine Racetrack (postal code M9W), and Cambridge City Hall is 82km away, and it's 91km to Kitchener City Hall.

    Like I said, I have no idea how big their corporate city limits are... so it isn't as peachy keen to plop down there as some might suggest.
  182. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: Pardon the slightly garbled last post, I revised about half of it, but in some scattershot way. That's what I get for typing and talking on the phone. Sorry.
  183. J H from Thunder Bay, Canada writes: Balsillie is hilarious. He is just reaching to the ends of the public opinion abilities by announcing that he would rename the rink his team plays in after Walter. Anyone who is a true hockey fan does not need to know Walter's last name as it seems to be at the core of hockey names in Canada. There are several identifiable names or handles in hockey. As much of a public opinion move it is, renaming a rink after Walter would be fitting and should be done.

    Good luck to Mr. Balsillie
  184. JUDITH HANNAH from Markham, Canada writes: Win or lose - this is GB's last big fight as commish. Napoleon might win this battle at Waterloo but the wounds will be fatal. RIP.
  185. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Metro Man writes: I so love the genius in the comments at G&M….and the misleading information is fun too... Firstly, the courts cannot rule in favour of Balsillie or they will destroy the concept of franchising in North America
    First of all, the court ruling will decide whether Chapter 11 is doable because the NHL is claiming THEY have control over the franchise and not Moyes.

    So before going ahead and dissing all the posters here, why don't you get your facts straight. The judge must rule in the best interests of the creditors and to date, Balsillie's offer covers 100% of the credtors unless a superiour bid is received. That is STEP 1-nothing else matters until that is determined even if there is a conditional clause in the purchase offer.

    As for your territorial rant:

    " The Bureau's investigation established that under the NHL's rules and procedures, the proposed relocation of a franchise to Southern Ontario would require a majority vote by the NHL Board of Governors. The NHL would not permit any single team to exercise a veto to prevent a franchise from entering into Southern Ontario."

    Got it?
  186. Bill B from Canada writes: It's sad that it has come to this. The NHL is a disaster. I wish the league had some respect for Canadian hockey fans and the Canadian fan base actually carried some weight w.r.t. the way the league is run.
  187. Metro Man from Toronto, Canada writes: Thanks for the clarification R. Carriere.

    FYI - you are 100% correct about the court battle that is about to happen. What that court battle doesn't cover that will have to be covered in the next battle is Balsillie's determined move to place the team in Southern Ontario - which is THE determining factor in whether or not his bid to purchase the team is going to go through. So to clraify even if or when Moyes wins the case is a moot point as that still won't make Balsillie the owner - his bid is predicated on the team being moved to Southern Ontario - which bankrupt or not the organization can't do on it's own terms.

    As for the legaleze of your second paragraph - it goes to my point that no organization would allow a rogue owner into it's "club" knowing that his/her sole purpose is to stir up the crap.

    I agree with you, but I also think that your points are not the context of what I was trying to push across.
  188. Slander Us from Canada writes: R. Carriere - thanks! Funny how people get on here calling other know-it-alls-know-nothing then proceed to toss out their incorrect info as fact.

    Metro Man - if the courts couldn't rule in favour of Balsillie, the case would have been dismissed yesterday. Generally speaking, judges hate wasting their time hearing arguments for cases they have no authority over. Also - are you really that naive as to believe if he gently approached Gary Bettman about the unworkability of the situation in Phoenix that Bettman would listen to him? Bettman has made one thing very clear: the NHL will do anything and everything to keep a franchise in Phoenix. Bettman already knows that in 13 years Phoenix has never made a dime, that they've lost over $100M since 2001, that they have one of the worst attendances in the league over the past decade while conversely having among the cheapest tickets. Yeah - if that didn't convince him the team was a failure, I'm sure Ballsillie's gentle pleading will work!
  189. Bones Monseki from Ottawa, Canada writes: Bill B from Canada writes: It's sad that it has come to this. The NHL is a disaster.

    you said it... Not that I'm not a fan, Lord knows I am.
  190. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Well Slander...I guess I'll just leave it to you then. Once again, as stated before, I never put forth any argument as if it was up for debate. It really doesn't matter what you believe, because what anyone who has legal knowledge with respect to the subject actually "knows" is totally different. You quote some "legal analyst" on ESPN that they would have simply plucked from their roster of legal analysts. Anyhow, for the rest who might see the differences, here is how it works. MLSE and/or Buffalo invoke their Territorial right under the NHL Constitution, the document that was created to manage the affairs amongst the joint venture franchises. The NHL cannot invoke any rights held by NHL franchises, they must be invoked by those that hold the rights to begin with. Hence, the Leafs or Sabres are the ones that will invoke the territorial rights in Canada. Balsillie will challenge the Competition Bureau to declare that the territorial veto is contrary to A) s. 45 (Criminal) and/or B) s. 78/79 of the Competition Act. Should the Bureau agree with Balsillie legal proceedings will begin in either Federal Court or before the Competition Tribunal. The NHL will represent the Franchises/BoG, MLSE and Buffalo will probably be there and a slew of other intervenors. The NHL must account for any of its business arrangements within Canada, so still must abide by the Competition Act. U.S. Anti-Trust applies to their arrangements in the U.S. That is that and we could go on with this all day, but that is a free tutorial. Should someone with any actual knowledge on the subject beyone what they "think" they know have a different take, please add to the thoughts. For all others, you're welcome.
  191. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Metro Man from Toronto, : No probs there-all is good-did not mean to be harsh! OK?

    I will agree that Balsillie's chance or actually passing a Board vote is slim at best, and moving the franchise close to nil. Too many hurdles and egos...but money sometimes talks.

    Another possible scenario--as Bettemen works for the owners, is try and get control of the franchise, and instead of Chapter 11, go to Chapter 7 which is liquidation.

    That would force player dispersal, then the awarding of a new franchise to Kansas City with franchise fee of let's say $290 million---a cool $10 million for every owner or some combination thereof vs the nothing they would receive from a Balsillie purchase.

    $10 million would look good to many owners these days....and Moyes did pull a behind the back move on the NHL...
  192. Hockeydad London from Canada writes: Metro Man, this type of situation has nothing to do with Franchise. These are not franchises. This is a joint venture among equal parties. There is no Franchisee-Franchisor relationship. The owners of the teams collectively own the NHL, not the other way 'round. If all the owners of the gas station chains agreed to territorial limits, so there was only Bob's gas within 100 K of your house and gas prices were therefore high because of lack of competition, you would I am sure not be defending territorial limits. Not that our oil and gas companies would ever conspire to control prices of course...
  193. Slander Us from Canada writes: Tucker - what a big man you are ... leaving it to me then following up with a 500 word essay of nonsense. Are you familiar with the conceot of franchises? I'll assume you are. Are you familiar with the idea that franchisees are bound by the rules set forth by the franchisor? Again, I'll assume you are. If, as you are contending, the franchises were to invoke territorial rights - what would stop MLSE from saying their territory was going to be 500km? The NHL Constitution stops them from doing that by setting territorial rights for all franchises to follow. Understand this concept yet? Franchisors are exactly the people that set the stipulations for the franchisees, if not, franchisees could run amok and do whatever they want. One more time: the NHL (through their constituion) designated the territorial rights of franchises, not the franchises themselves. Further, no team can exercise a veto over relocation of a team within the territory of another team if 24 of 30 teams vote in favour of the relocation. Thus neither Toronto nor Buffalo, or both, could veto the relocation to Hamilton if 24 teams accepted it. Get it yet?
  194. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    If anyone is interested on the "Competition Bureau of Canada" findings last time Balsillie had the run at Nashville, follow the link:

    Competition Bureau Concludes Examination into National Hockey League Franchise Ownership Transfer and Relocation Policies
    March 31, 2008.
  195. Slander Us from Canada writes: To add to my previous post - the Franchisor, with respects to the NHL, is effectively the BoG (usually made up of each owner or 1 of his representatives). They set the constitution, they approve any and all changes.
  196. Ed Long from Canada writes: Now why would Bettman want an owner with very deep pockets containing real cash, as opposed to some of the flimflam artists he has allowed into the league, to take a boat anchor of a team, polish them up and move them to a location where they can make money????
  197. Steve Church from Canada writes: Way too many comments hoping for an outcome based on how they hate Bettman, the Owners, the Leafs, the Sunbelt Strategy, or ... something else. Balsillie got all the T&Cs twice before, and he has deliberately tried to trash both. He wants to take down both Bettman & MLSE in the process - so he can get a new Hamilton franchise without paying the honest price. If he can't have it, he'll pull the whole NHL town apart. He's played the street like a fiddle - the underlying assumption that a competitive, successful, profitable franchise in Hamilton adding to the shine of Suntario (and Buffalo) hockey ... is a pipedream filled with hopes and assumptions. This latest move has suckered Bettman into the role of protecting the Phoenix fans ... which makes as much sense as protecting the City of Manhatten from Charles Wang wanting to leave.
  198. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Yawn Slander: Franchisor and Franchisee relationship does not apply with the NHL. The NHL is a joint venture - once again, believe or not I don't really care. Therefore, the Constitution is more like a binding agreement amongst all seperate franchises. Gary Bettman and the NHL Officers enjoy all powers and responsibilities as allowed by the Board of Governors...the owners. Anything else you would like to add to your Pizza Pizza analysis.
  199. Slander Us from Canada writes: Thanks for sharing that R. Carriere. Interesting to note: they state that their finding is specific to the case of the Predators, and that the findings were dictated according to the facts in that case. They wrote:

    "The Bureau found that in the present circumstances, the NHL's policies were not implemented with an intended predatory, exclusionary or disciplinary purpose. Rather, such policies were applied in furtherance of the legitimate business interests of the NHL as discussed above."

    The question I have from reading that is whether or not the Phoenix case - after suffering substantial losses and never making any money in 13 seasons - would have a similra outcome? Could the NHL make a valid case, given the financial mess of the Coyotes and the total losses of the franchise, that forcing an owner to keep the team in Phoenix would be "in furtherance of the legitimate business interests of the NHL"? I would think that would be hard to rpove in this case.
  200. Slander Us from Canada writes: You do realize you contradicted yourself in your last post, don't you Tucker? Or is understanding semantics not your strong suit?
  201. D W from Switzerland writes: I am sure this thread will continue in the Saturday paper... see you all then!

    go Hamilton!
  202. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Slander Us from Canada : appreciate your comments. I gue$$ the lawyer$ are going to have fun with Thi$.
  203. Slander Us from Canada writes: No kidding - the only winners by the time this plays out will be the lawyers! I have doubts Balsillie will get Phoenix (but I firmly believe he will end up with another failing franchise soon enough - unless contraction happens), Bettman and the NHL are embarassing themselves by fighting tooth and nail for a failed business (and that comes AFTER they lied to fans for months by telling us all was fine in Phoenix), and fans have to be subjected to this crap instead of a great playoff season (and I'm sure this will continue on throughout the off-seas, marring the draft, FA signing season and on and on ...).
  204. Hockeydad London from Canada writes: Slander Us, I do business law. The NHL is not a franshisee-franchisor relationship. Even there, the franchisor must be very careful of territorial limits. They must meet a business sense test. This is a joint-venture, with the joint parties owning the business name NHL etc. They have collectively agreed to limits, whether they make business sense or not. Again, there are all sorts of jurisdictional issues here, as well, the Competition Bureau here will decide on a case by case basis. Lots more to come. R. Carriere, right, wish I wa$ one of tho$e lawyer$ my$self.
  205. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: Found this link over @ FoxSports, and it shed some light in a slightly different fashion for me. It's written by a lawyer with some insight both pro and con for both sides of the case:
  206. Sydney Goldberg from Canada writes: I'm not a fan of Gary Bettman and would love to see a team returned to Winnipeg, Quebec City in addition to Toronto or added to Ontario. This story is not about how much Toronto loves and wants a second hockey team, it is a legal battle. It will come down to who owns the team and that is that. The ability of a new owner to move the team will depend under the current NHL rules on the other owners approval. Anti Trust laws do not apply because Jim Balsille can start his own hockey league any time he wants including Toronto and any other Canadian city he desire. He would have to find places to play in each market and that is a different matter. The Coyotes move would not guarantee Toronto a playoff team, because they did not make the playoffs this year. One other point they do not play in the same division as the Leafs, Senators or Canadians and I doubt the court will order the NHL to change divisions to accomodate Jim Balsillie or anyone else. By the way if Jim Balsillie is such a huge hockey fan and so committed to Canadian hockey teams, why no offer to move the team back to Winnipeg. The real story here is that he has attempted an end run to move a team to Hamilton. He may have success with a very by the book Judge Redford Baum and he may be told A very clear NO. This Judge if very by the book and will read and re read every point of law and than some before he makes a decision. He will not base his decision on being a sports fan, or how many people in Toronto hate MLSE, he will base it on the facts and they are did Mr. Moyes own the team or not. One more very important point is that he may award the team to Jim Balsille, he may also order that the NHL rules must be followed, so good luck trying to move the team when you ticked the other owners off. My guess is that at some point Mr. Wang will move the Islanders to Toronto and make a deal to use the Leafs area, similar to the one between the Jets and giants. Sydney Joel Goldberg
  207. Steve Church from Canada writes: Slander - there's no precedent in the NHL's intervention in the Phoenix case. They did more in Ottawa, and more in Buffalo. And about the same in Pittsburgh. And yes, Hockeydad, it is a franchise structure: a co-operative type ownership and income/expense sharing arrangement; but franchises within the NHL nonetheless. The key difference is that the Central NHL Office can make and enforce rules and money-flow both on and off the ice. It was demonstrated most recently in the litigation of the Rangers v the League over website and merchandising obligations. It was settled in the court, and not by a vote of the franchises. And in compliment, I wish you were one of those lawyers as well - Balsillie's lawyer is getting press as the powdermonkey giving loose cannon advice.
  208. Slander Us from Canada writes: Steve - I didn't say there was. The only precedence I stated was that of the NFL and territorial rights. That, IMO, is just one small facet of this battle - and one that comes later in the process. And if that battle were to happen, I suspect it would happen in AZ or NY. The difference with Ottawa, Buffalo & Pittsburgh is that they were hockey markets with a great fanbase. The issues there were more about the business of hockey and corporate sponsorship (as well as the value of the dollar in Ottawa's case). In Phoenix, those issues exists as well, but also the issue that they don't have the support required and they have a terrible deal with Glendale (i.e. they recieve nothing from concessions or parking). There is just virtually no way for this franchise to work without wiping the debt clean and renegotiating the agreement with Glendale (which the NHL and Moyes tried to do and failed). The evidence was clear in Ott, Pitts and Buf that they could be viable franchises (though Buf is in financial trouble yet again, and one can only wonder what would have happened to Pitts if Crosby never got drafted). Hockeydad - I think this is so bad for the league, but I can't wait for this battle to play out. Makes for great theatre! I, Alafrate - thanks for that link ... very good info there.
  209. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Hockey Dad

    As a lawyer can you clarify who has jurisdiction re the territorial rights? If the NHL territorial laws are indeed found to be illegal under US anti trust law, does that include it's Canadian franchises or just the American ones? I'm just curious as neither Slander or Tucker claimed to be a lawyer where you have bravely admitted to be scum of the earth;).

    Oh and if you could provide the info "pro bono" I would apprieciate it as I cannot pay for your services.
  210. R. Carriere from Maritimes, Canada writes:

    Hockeydad London from Canada writes: R. Carriere, right, wish I wa$ one of tho$e lawyer$ my$self.
    Al$o appreciated your in$ight$.

    Having done business in different states and countries over the years, when a dispute transpires, there is always a question of jurisdiction.

    In this case, it appears Part 1, which is both deemed control/ownership and US Chapter 11, falls into the state of Arizona, yet because Part II-the conditional sale involves a Canada/Ontario entity, do you have a take on this---or anyone else?
  211. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander: Never contradicted myself. Maybe your bend on thinking that your ideas are correct has confused you. Just because they are called "Franchises" does not establish a Franchisor/Franchisee relationship at law. Each Franchise is an organization that exists on its own and abides by the NHL Constitution, which could be called many other names. The NHL Constitution is simply the contract established between the Joint Venturees to govern their affairs as between each other. So, as noted before, where one invokes their legal rights under contract, the NHL Constitution, in Canada (MLSE), they better make sure that the contract/contractual relationship is legal in the first place. That should put it into plain english for ya. More?
  212. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Great link Iafrate

    That third scenario seems to say that the Anti trust laws do cover Mr Basillie's plans.

    Great drama indeed.
  213. Scot Loucks from Winnipeg, Canada writes: I, Alafrate from Canada writes: Found this link over @ FoxSports, and it shed some light in a slightly different fashion for me. It's written by a lawyer with some insight both pro and con for both sides of the case:


    Great link I, Alafrate.

    I'd suggest a number of the posters here go read it... prior to spouting.

  214. Slander Us from Canada writes: Tucker - you bore me with your incorrect data and pontifications. Please read the link provided by I, Alafrate. A business lawyer provides for the exact scenario I've been talking about. I may not know what I'm tlking about in your mind, but this guy does.
  215. can I vote again from around-Kingston, Canada writes: I mean...

    who cares who buttman keeps 'alive'

    after all ... the SENS rooks a real long nap ... now they're BACK and STRONG and vying for the CUP
  216. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander: The guy on Fox? Haha...For the record, I would write an article too and place it on a blog and have it labeled as an opinion too, but that would be giving it away for free. The Fox guy knows U.S. bankruptcy law, good for him...go on. When it comes to Anti-Trust vs. Competition Act, and Jim will try both avenues, I'll invite Mr. Fox sports guy to submit his wisdom. Maybe he can come work for our firm. Doubtful at best. Maybe I should comment on Real Estate Law because I read about it in law school while I'm at it. Joke. However, anyone that practices Competition Law would tell you that this guy probably wouldn't be able to figure out the half of it if/when it goes that way.
  217. Cactus Puck from Canada writes: Thanks for the link, I, Alafrate. Definitely worth reading, especially for us armchair lawyers.
  218. Slander Us from Canada writes: Right Tucker, I understand now - you're a troll! Got it. I don't know what I'm talking about, a lawyer on ESPN doesn't know what he's talking about (for no other reason than he was on ESPN) and now the lawyer commenting for FOX sports is wrong too. This is all happening in a US courtroom, so any knowledge of the Canadian legal system you might have (I sincerely doubt you're a lawyer if you have this much time to spend trolling a comment board - either that, or you're terrible at what you do and have no clients or rip them off by wasting their time on comment boards) is moot. Everybody's wrong but you. I have reviewed the CB ruling re: Nashville and posted a response to it above. You ignore that which doesn't support YOUR version and stick to flimsy rationales for doing so ... wait, maybe you are a lawyer after all.
  219. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Oh, and Slander - even in the remotest of circumstances, where a U.S. Bankruptcy Court basically forces the sale and relocation to Hamilton, what do you think is the likelihood? Even by using your Franchisor/Franchisee flawed analogy? If you guessed that the Hamilton Coyotes would voted out by the BoG, you would be correct. Or, alternatively that they would vote them out, unless the Leafs and Buffalo agree to allow them to stay. So, basically...same boat. For the record, that scenario won't happen. Moyes will have to win round 1 in Banruptcy Court and Round 2 at the Federal Court or Competition Tribunal.
  220. Hunkered down in the land of never ending promises from Canada writes: The daily photos in the G&M had an interesting opening. A professor at an Arizona university said that Phoenix's drop in real estate prices since 2006 is 50% lower today. Perhaps the lagging support for the Coyotes is due to the fact that people in the Phoenix lost more homes per capita in that city and region than any other location in the U.S. Bettman's position is borne out an intense dislike for Canada. For Bettman it's not about hockey. It's only about money and a team in Hamilton will do two things. Thrive and punish the Maple Laffs on the ice everytime they play. That's what MLSE fears the most. When you're the only hockey game in town(s) it's easy to fill the AC centre. When you really have to put a competitive product on the ice, the challenge is a bit more difficult.
    I wish Mr. Balsillie well but Bettman has many powerful equally small minded friends and none have any love seeing another Canadian team.
  221. Seriously Now? from Canada writes: Tucker - beat it, you're adding absolutely nothing ot this comment board. Either give us some meat with your potatoes, or keep it to yourself.

    R. Carriere and I, Alafrate - your links are very resourceful to those of us looking for my insight. Cheers.
  222. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander: First you're bowing to a "business lawyer" who admittedly doesn't know much about Anti-Trust/Competition Law, yet calling him an expert on such. At the same time, I've posted numerous times on exactly Competition Law and how it works...not even to a primary level of knowledge which would usually spark some ideas in most peoples minds. Like: Maybe this guy knows something about Competition Law, maybe, just maybe, he practices such or even has some kind of knowledge beyond making giant leaps based on rudimentary knowledge about business law. Just a thought. I know that corporations looking for Competition Law advice in this country usually call a Competition Lawyer, but why not just call the guy who says he specializes in contract enforcement. I least he has some general knowledge about business law. I know it's hard to accept that Competition Lawyers understand Competition Law, but if you want some free insight from one, just see my posts today. Thanks...and you're welcome once again.
  223. jimmy juju from Canada writes: who cares they are nothing but a bunch of steroid users anyway.

    get a life. you suckers buy these tickets and yet you seem to think this is real??

    get a grip you losers.
  224. jimmy juju from Canada writes: just another way to waste 3 hours a day. The elites keep you all stupid while they rob you through taxation, bank bailouts, etc.

    WAKE UP!
  225. Slander Us from Canada writes: What on Earth are you talking about jimmy juju? Are you confusing hockey with baseball and the NHL with the auto industry?

    Tucker - thanks but no thanks. I'm not interested in the ramblings of a "lawyer" with this much time on his hands. I assume you've researched the backgrounds and education of the lawyers ESPN and FOX had on air? I work in the media, and trust me - no outlet hires lawyers that have no history or knowledge on a subject to provide their insights.
  226. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: Slander - I have as much time on my hands as I want. Especially on a Friday afternoon, knowing I'll be in the office all of Sat. and Sun. And since not one of these "experts" is an expert in Anti-Trust or Competition Law, I would say that neither are experts in the subject matter. It's like saying a GP is better able to provide an expert opinion on Brain Surgery than the Brain Surgeon. Not that law is brain surgery by any means, but I would never advise a client on anything outside of my expertise. I guess face-time might have been worth it for your "experts".
  227. Tucker Clark from Canada writes: And seriously....ESPN and Fox? One is Fox and the other is the Fox of sports. Could your sources be any less credible from the get-go?
  228. Jude Hannaford from Canada writes: Is JB's plan essentially

    1. Gain ownership by dodging the approval vote via the courts.
    2. Challenge the NHL's constitution in court, Rodier must have convinced him they'll win.
    3. Move his new team to the sweetest apple on the tree; SW Ont, for a paltry 217mil up front!!
    4. When and if he ever sells the team he stands to make scads of money. Money the current owners want for themselves (no 400 mil expansion fee)

    A Hostile Takeover.
  229. Hockey First from Canada writes: Right Tucker Clark - nothing's less credible then sports networks reporting about sports. You're a lying troll with delusions of grandeur. How comfy is your mom's basement?

    Slander Us - STOP FEEDING THE TROLLS. They get off on stuff like that. If he truly believes he's a lawyer, that's good enough for him ... but avoid trolls like this guy.
  230. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: If I may interject:

    FWIW, I think Tucker is actually who he claims to be: someone in the field of law. His phrasings and inability to let a point go are both conversation hallmarks of my brother, who is a partner in a law firm here in the big city. I've enjoyed reading his input.

    (Mind you, Mister Clark's insistence on his own correctness makes me think he may be articiling. And I'm glad some of you liked the link.)
  231. I, Alafrate from Canada writes: Having thought about it further, I rescind the above paranthetical remarks as they pertain to Mister Clark.
  232. Gerald Carpenter from writes: I alafrate, while i appreciate the link, you and others should be aware that the legal analysis is deficient in a number of areas. To a large extent, the errors are based on a significantly incomplete understanding of the facts. As someone who is both a practicing business lawyer for over twenty years and who has actually read the filed documentation, the relevant caselaw and substantial portions of the NHL's constitution, I can tell you that his understanding is fatally flawed in a number of respects. He has completely misunderstood the issue with respect to the authority to enter into bankruptcy, the nature of the other offers (including, first and foremost, the Reinsdorf offer) and the need for certain approvals from the NHL (any prospective purchaser needs both consent to the assignment of the franchise AND consent to relocation). He does certainly have something to offer, but as any counsel will tell you, opinions are only as good as the counsel's knowledge of the facts.
  233. Steve Church from Canada writes: Slander, your effort to paint natural biological markets of the north different than the Phoenix situation is sadly mistaken. The extent of the NHL intervention was just as strong, if not stronger. The deal with Covanta in Ottawa was worse than the parking lot deal with Glenndale. The City of Pittsburgh nearly killed the franchise by blocking an arena makeover. Quite the opposite of it being clear that the three northern franchises were viable franchises - they were failing in the free-wheeling spend-dizzy NHL, and it took a complete rebuild of their organization, and fincancing, and a new CBA to make them work. Number of fans matters squat when the red ink is waist high.
  234. Scott Mckay from Michigan, writes: Bettman also hates New England as well. Hartford had a decent franchise compared to what Carolina has done. Did Bettman do anything to stop the relocation of Hartford? No. Ditto for Winnipeg and Quebec. THE MAN IS A DISGRACE TO HAOCKEY
  235. Richard Provencher from Truro, NS, Canada writes: I say, "Bring on another Canadian team, and Hamilton would be a great choice." There are plenty of fans to keep both teams happy.

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