I think the complete opposite about mario's comments. Balsillie backed out at the last minute but then states he still has interest. I would never renegotiate with someone that backs out on their word but then is willing to talk down the road if the purchasing conditions suit him better.
He has all the right to back out but you dont back out and then two days later say youre still interested.
It doesn't matter if you spend millions on a Copps upgrade - a team is NOT coming to Hamilton. Buffalo and Toronto have territorial rights and they will not allow a team right in the middle of their market.
The reason I metioned KW, even though it is farfetched, it is the only place in Ontario with a fairly large poplulation that is outside of an existing NHL team's territory.
My understanding from all I have read and heard, is that the it was the NHL imposing a bunch of other conditions at the last minute that caused him to back out.
If I had a deal with someone and then another interested party told me what I could and couldnt do with it at the last minute, and those things were fundamentally different than what I originally signed up for, I would back out too. And I might still have interest if those new conditions were taken away.
You're right about the territorial rights held by Buffalo and Toronto but legal experts have said this method of exclusion would not hold up in court on either side of the border. However, even if this obstacle could be dealt with, it's very clear that the NHL (Bettman) does not want to see another team in Canada. They still have this dream of expanding to hockey hotbeds like Las Vegas! and mega-dollar tv contracts.
Exactly! Baisillie was ready to buy the team for $ 175 million and said he'd keep the team in Pittsburgh if they built a new arena. If no new arena, then he'd look at relocating to KW. Then when the agreement is faxed to him, the NHL added on another 24 clauses including "if the NHL is not satisfied with the operation of the team, they'll rescind the team".
I don't blame Baisillie for backing out. I'd tell Bettman to sit and spin! For the sake of Bettman and the NHL...those same clauses better be applied to any owner looking at purchasing and relocating the team to any other city (regardless of which country Can vs US) or there may be a discrimination lawsuit flying.
It smells like an attempt by Bettman and the NHL to prevent a team from moving back north across the border.
i was listening to the radio station yesterday, get this. the guy says toronto would be looking to take over the franchise n create 2 teams in the city, then he used la lakers, la clippers as his example. 5 minutes later he bring up hamilton and says, hamilton would not be able to have a team due to the location too close to buffalo and toronto they would complain? thats bs that toronto could have two teams in one city and hamilton couldnt due to out location? bullcrap this is bs.
I think a team would be better off in Kitchener than Hamilton.First Kitchener is outside the territories of Buffalo and Toronto.Second ,there is a lot more wealth in the area,lots of corporate offices to buy season tickets.Kitchener- Waterloo is booming while Hamilton is in decay with very little prospect of recovering.
Bettman: Keep the team in Pittsburgh... Lemieux: Keep the team in Pittsburgh... Balsillie: Fine!..We'll see how Isle Capri does then try plan b... what??? 24 MORE conditions.. can't move the team till 2013, if you all of a sudden don't like me you can take the team back??.. Screw that!.. I'm out!
Mario: Well team is off the market.. Now WHERE can I move it to??
Bettman gets my nod for the stupid idiot of the millenium vote every time..