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Coyotes Situation

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Looks like Jim Balsillie has made an offer to buy the Coyotes and still wants to move whatever team he buys to Ontario.

The article states that the league wants to keep the team in Arizona.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=4143432

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The team's also filed bankruptcy today, and Jerry Moyes has been removed as owner. I believe that'd get us around the lease agreement we have with Glendale for the Job, which was a major stopper for anyone wanting to move us ($700m penalty I believe it is).

I don't really want to become Toronto's second choice, but I'm not confident of them staying in the desert right now.

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Its really too bad for the Coyotes fans. Hopefully it works itself out, but its not looking good. I find it curious how the whole thing transpired. I'm not too big on the thought of the Toronto area having another team, though I don't doubt they wouldn't support them. It just seems like you'd saturate the market with the Sabres, Red Wings, and Maple Leafs all relatively close.

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Well New York has 3 teams (Rangers, Islanders, and Devils) with Philly being just as close as Buffalo is to Toronto. So I don't think it will be too over-saturated. Plus I think some Canadians will root for the team just because it's another Canadian franchise.

The team would have to be in the East, specifically the Northeast Division to maximize the cross-town rivalry. With Ottawa and Montreal in the same division, that should be a big draw as well as Buffalo being close.

The real question is, would you have an Eastern Conference team jump to the Western Conference to even things out? Actually you just send the Islanders to Vegas and problem solved :)

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The real question is, would you have an Eastern Conference team jump to the Western Conference to even things out? Actually you just send the Islanders to Vegas and problem solved :)

Haha, I bet Wang wouldn't mind that. If this does shake down in bankruptcy court so Balsillie takes the team, they could still be in the West next season but play in Hamilton until it gets all sorted out. Of course, the NHL isn't taking this lying down:

http://www.fromtherink.com/2009/5/6/866483...le-takes-to-the

It's Bettman's insistence on not allowing a team to be sold to Mr. Blackberry and relocated TO A HOCKEY MARKET which really has me angry. I never want to see a team moved if I can help it (and I have one of their jerseys, the maroon is nice!) but geez, the team is bleeding money and here is a way out. Yet, it will be fought tooth and nail by NHL, Inc. sadly.

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It just seems like you'd saturate the market with the Sabres, Red Wings, and Maple Leafs all relatively close.

But the bonus is that this is the region that can support that level of saturation.

I'd speculate that one of the many (though probably minor) reasons the NHL hates the idea is because division realignment would be a nightmare.

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It's Bettman's insistence on not allowing a team to be sold to Mr. Blackberry and relocated TO A HOCKEY MARKET which really has me angry. I never want to see a team moved if I can help it (and I have one of their jerseys, the maroon is nice!) but geez, the team is bleeding money and here is a way out. Yet, it will be fought tooth and nail by NHL, Inc. sadly.

I agree with this completely. I know Bettman was the one who was a big part of the NHL's Southern Expansion, but he really needs to look at reality. Of the teams in the Southern US, many of them don't draw very well and obviously a team in Canada could be nearly a joke in the league and probably nearly sell out on a regular basis. I don't like to see teams move, but at the same time, this is where the business sense that should be in Bettman's head should step up and do what is best for the NHL. (No disrespect meant to the fans in any of the Southern regions of the US - the teams just don't generally draw well in those markets)

In terms of percentage of arena filled, the 4 of the 5 worst teams were all from the Southern US this past season.

Atlanta - 78.9% capacity

Florida - 81.2%

Islanders - 84.5%

Phoenix - 85.0%

Tampa Bay - 85.6%

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/attendance?s...t&year=2009

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I don't like to see teams move, but at the same time, this is where the business sense that should be in Bettman's head should step up and do what is best for the NHL.

Agreed, although I bet winning could have really helped the attendance there in the Desert and kept the team around but the team has been losing money and games steadily and there is almost a ready made (save renovating the stadium) market there in Southern Ontario. Bettman's screwing the Preds deal and the Pens deal with respect to Balsillie means that round 3 is going to be a quagmire.

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The Lightning attendance will pick up if the team was competitive again. According to the ESPN link in 2006 they were second in att. In 2007 they were third. In 2008 they dropped down to eigth. People aren't going to pay to see a team which only wins 12 of its 40 home games.

Atlanta, on the other hand, was a horrible choice. The Flames failed there, I don't know what they were thinking giving them another franchise. It's the worst sports market in the country. They've never broken the top 20 in attendance. I feel bad for Kovalchuk having to play there.

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I was really hoping to see the Coyotes make a solid playoff run this year. I firmly believe they are on the cusp of one. They definitely needed it this year.

I grew to love the Coyotes when I lived out in Phoenix the last several years. Personally, Jobing.com Arena is one of the best hockey arenas I've had the privilege of watching a game at. The staff was always courteous and professional and I grew to really respect the diehard fanbase they have there. I hate to see them leave the city if it does indeed happen, but I'm not surprised either. I feel bad for the diehards and season ticket holders (like Desert Rat). After I moved out here to Dallas, I missed the Job even more. It was very easy to get to and I was usually assured of seeing 5-6 games a year, now I'm down to being lucky if I see one. They also had a nice shopping/entertainment complex in the Westgate area. Growing up in an IHL city (Indianapolis), then watching the Ice go to the CHL and then the Junior ranks was bad enough...I just can't imagine what it would be like losing a team altogether.

I don't doubt that Baisillie would be a good owner or that they Coyotes wouldn't be supported in Canada... I'm just not a big fan of the franchises moving thing...and the ironic thing is three of my favorite teams are transplants (including my beloved Indianapolis Colts).

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Seems like the league is trying to step in and say that the team has been run by the NHL since November and that Moyes did not have the authority to file for bankruptcy. The league would like to sell the team to Jerry Reinsdorf who owns the NBA's Chicago Bulls and MLB's Chicago White Sox.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=4150580

As for this whole thing about Toronto not being able to support 2 teams in one region. Toronto is the largest city in all of Canada with 2.6 million people which makes it the 5th largest in all of North America. Los Angeles has the Kings and Ducks. New York has the Islanders, Rangers, and pretty close the Devils. If you include the surrounding cities, how can Toronto not support 2 teams in one region? The league would have to compensate the Leafs a little just like they did the Kings when the Ducks moved in, but ultimately Toronto can easily support 2 teams.

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As for this whole thing about Toronto not being able to support 2 teams in one region. Toronto is the largest city in all of Canada with 2.6 million people which makes it the 5th largest in all of North America. Los Angeles has the Kings and Ducks. New York has the Islanders, Rangers, and pretty close the Devils. If you include the surrounding cities, how can Toronto not support 2 teams in one region? The league would have to compensate the Leafs a little just like they did the Kings when the Ducks moved in, but ultimately Toronto can easily support 2 teams.

I don't doubt that the NHL would be well served by putting a team there someday (whether it be expansion or the moving of a franchise). From what I've been reading it'd make sense business-wise to have one there or at least somewhere in that region. Personally, I'd rather see a place like Winnipeg get a team first (though I'm aware they have an arena that needs some upgrades to make it NHL ready). I guess where I start thinking about the saturation thing is from what I've been hearing about the Leafs and the Sabres and their territorial rights. I also remember hearing about it when he (Balsillie) was talking about moving the Predators up to Hamilton a couple of years ago. I find their concerns interesting. I don't think the Wings would have anything to worry about, they're the Red Wings and one of the most popular and successful teams in the sport and then the Maple Leafs also seem like their own entity. I also think the Sabres have one of the best fanbases in the NHL. I hadn't really thought of the Philly-NYR-NYI-NJ thing. I even think you could have an argument about the saturation of the LA market.

I just keep reading things like this a lot when it comes to moving a team to Ontario, whether it be the Pens, Preds, or Coyotes (these are just a couple of the articles I've found):

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=277696

"How all that plays out in terms of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Buffalo Sabres remains to be seen."

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/hock...y.ap/index.html

The move to Hamilton would invade areas already claimed by the Toronto Maple Leafs and Buffalo Sabres as their fan base.

As for Phoenix itself. I still think there's possibility there (and yeah I am biased). There are a LOT of "snowbirds" that come down each winter. It seems like since Maloney took over, they are finally starting to be managed well in the front office. With that being said, I also think this is their last chance for them to keep the team. I just hope for their sake they can put a winner on the ice and it translates into more casual fans in the seats.

I do feel that if the NHL is thinking about expansion, then they NEED to have a Canadian team on the list, whether it be Toronto, Winnipeg, Quebec, Hamilton, Saskatoon, wherever. You can't keep ignoring Canada like that as its clear they want another team. I'd put a team in KC before I would Vegas. Voila! Natural rival for the Blues and maybe even the Wild and Blackhawks.

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I gotta wonder about this guy. If he does somehow end up with an NHL team is he gonna be the type of owner that will pay for the Star players to come to his franchise or is he gonna be that owner that no player wants to really play for?

He is so determined to own an NHL team and get it to Hamilton that nobody has really considered what type of owner he will be. Not only that but he is still a business man and he will face the same struggles that many of the Canadian teams have faced (not meant to be a shot at our Canadian fans or the teams, I want to see the teams succeed North of the Border), once he faces those issues will he try to bail out and get out of the league or will he accept the financial losses in Hamilton and use Blackberry to make up for the losses and accept his overall portfolio as opposed to individual assets.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/news/story?id=4420636

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Thread renamed:

Shane Doan recently made this commment and it does seem quite appropriate.

"Now if you went seven years without making the playoffs [like Phoenix], or not even come close," Doan told Canadian Press, "you'd see what any hockey city would be like, especially when you have so many [entertainment] options like Phoenix."

The NHL has made a bid to buy the team itself to negotiate a new lease during the season but also has in the back of its mind the possibility of moving the team. That seems to be the exact opposite thinking of what they were saying not so long ago about wanting to keep the Coyotes in Phoenix.

Also another company has offered to buy the team but wants the lease renegotiated before the season starts.

Court will decide which bid wins on 10 Sep. Coming up on crunch time for the Coyotes, I really do hope that Arizona gets to keep its franchise.

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I actually hope Ice Edge (I believe that is the name of the other competing company) gets the team over the NHL. The only catch is that if Ice Edge wins with its bid, they want the Yotes to play 5 "home" games in saskatchewan (sp?) every season. Id be willing to live with it if it meant I was still able to watch my team play in Phx for the other 37 home games.

Im not confident though. I dont see the Coyotes playing in Phx 3 years from now.

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Ice Edge has dropped out of the running to buy the Coyotes.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=290427

This just leaves Balsille and the NHL as the only entities left bidding on the team.

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