A person with knowledge of the situation says a tentative deal bythe NHL to sell the Phoenix Coyotes to former San Jose Sharks CEOGreg Jamison is expected to be announced before Monday night'splayoff game against the Nashville Predators. The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition ofanonymity because there has been no official scheduling of such anannouncement. A second person with knowledge of the situation, who also asked notto be identified, confirmed that NHL Commissioner Gary Bettmanwould be in Glendale for a series of meetings Monday but said itwas unclear if there would be a formal announcement. Jamison still must complete negotiations on a lease with the cityof Glendale, always the nagging issue in the league's attempts tosell the team, which the NHL purchased out of bankruptcy. |
The salealso would have to be approved by the league's board of governors. The anticipated announcement of the tentative agreement first wasreported by the Phoenix Business Journal. Doesn t this mean he takes over the team right away? Notlikely, CBCSports.ca s Tim Wharnsby said during the daily Hockey Night Online show on Monday. "The timing to me is very strange but I think there s someulterior motives that they [the NHL] just want to push thisownership story to the side and let the Coyotes try to succeed onthe ice, and see how far they can go this year. And they don't wantit hanging over their heads.
I think right now they can announcethe tentative deal and then they can always back track later andsay 'the financing fell through' [if it doesn't work out]. We llall know that the money situation in Phoenix has not been great." Monday night would provide a dramatic backdrop to such anannouncement, with a packed house on hand to watch the upstartCoyotes try to close out their Western Conference semifinal serieswith the Predators. Phoenix leads the series 3-1. Behind general manager Don Maloney and coach Dave Tippett, the teamhas managed to make the playoffs each of the three seasons it hasbeen owned by the NHL. But this season marked the first time thefranchise advanced past the first round of the playoffs since 1987,nine years before it moved from Winnipeg to Arizona.
Jamison has been in talks for some time on a new lease for the useof Jobing.com Arena, and terms of that lease could still run afoulof a conservative watchdog group, the Goldwater Institute, thatstymied a previous attempt to sell the franchise a year ago. Thecity would pay an annual feel to the Coyotes for operation of thearena, a figure that the Goldwater group could see as a thinlydisguised subsidy and a violation of the Arizona Constitution. "They expect to be a fly in the ornament this time around, also,"said Wharnsby. "I m sure they re going to request certaindocuments once this deal gets closer to being done.
They don twant the taxpayers to have to pay any further money. Already, citycouncil has voted by a slim margin of 4-3 that 17 million US willbe earmarked to the Jamison group to manage [the arena]. Is that agood investement? There are different studies commissioned byGlendale that s an area that s really been hit hard by therecession." Any new lease would have to go before the Glendale city council. The Coyotes have not made money since they moved to Arizona. Then-owner Jerry Moyes took the team into bankruptcy three yearsago with the intention of selling it to Canadian businessman JimBalsillie, who wanted to move the franchise to Hamilton, Ont.
Theleague vehemently opposed the plan and, after two prospectivebuyers pulled out, the NHL was the lone bidder to purchase the teamout of bankruptcy. The league has long said it wanted to find a buyer to keep the teamin Glendale and the city committed $25 million each of the past twoseasons to help cover operating losses. If recent attempts to finda buyer were to fall through, the NHL would be clear to finallydetermine whether to move the franchise elsewhere. "I m sure the league thinks it is a good deal but there has to bea lot of skepticism right now just because we ve been down thisroad before," said Wharnsby.
With files from Tim Wharnsby.
The e-commerce company in China offers quality products such as HDMI Composite Video Converter , Spy Camera Watch, and more. For more , please visit Scroll Tablet PC today!
Related Articles -
HDMI Composite Video Converter, Spy Camera Watch,