Arena NHL Expansion (and Deflation)

Discussion in 'Archive: The Arena' started by Zaz, May 24, 2009.

  1. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    The Penguins have been in frequent trouble, though, despite 3 Stanley Cups.
  2. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    Part 2...

    Nashville Predators purchase bid

    "On May 23, 2007 it was announced that Balsillie had reached a tentative agreement to buy the Nashville Predators from Craig Leipold.[9]

    Balsillie had stated that he would move the Predators to Hamilton, Ontario as soon as the 2007-08 season. The Predators' attendance was 21st in the league (in terms of percentage of capacity)[10] despite finishing with one of the league's best regular season records, thus calling into question Nashville's viability as a hockey market.

    There was an exit clause in the team's lease at the Sommet Center that could be activated if attendance does not improve. Leipold himself had not ruled out a relocation, but repeatedly reassured the Nashville fans that he would do everything he could to keep the team there.

    It was strongly believed that Balsillie's long-term goal was to relocate the team to Southern Ontario and that he would try to move the Predators at the earliest opportunity. Most speculation circled around Hamilton, with Balsillie's new company, Golden Horseshoe Sports & Entertainment, securing exclusive rights to bring an NHL team to Copps Coliseum, as well as the rights to operate Hamilton Place, the Hamilton Convention Centre, and the associated parking facilities.[11] Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger had stated that Balsillie's intention was to bring an NHL team to Copps in Hamilton.[12] Relocating to Hamilton would almost certainly have required compensation and/or residual rights to be granted to the Toronto Maple Leafs as they own territorial rights to the region. Buffalo may also have demanded compensation although they are out of the 80 km territorial zone set by the NHL.

    On June 14, 2007 Balsillie started to accept season ticket deposits for the Hamilton Predators through Ticketmaster. He collected more than seven thousand deposits on the first day of the campaign, and within days had capped deposits for luxury boxes at 80. By June 19 Balsillie was believed to have 12,000 deposits for season tickets in Hamilton, far exceeding the Predators' season ticket base.[13] Balsillie is said to have done this to show the NHL board of Governors that Hamilton is a viable NHL market.

    TSN reported on Friday, June 22, 2007, that Leipold had instructed the NHL not to consider Balsillie's application to purchase the team. A few hours later Leipold issued this statement: ?We did send the NHL a letter today requesting that it not do any further due diligence on Jim Balsillie?s offer for the Nashville Predators until we reach a binding agreement. If Jim is interested in reaching a binding agreement, we are prepared to move forward.?[14]

    On June 28, 2007, CBC.ca reported that Leipold had decided not to sign a binding agreement with Balsillie."
  3. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    Well, a lot of their financial trouble was due to their player salaries in the late 1990s. I'm not exactly sure of all the details, but there was still a solid fan base. The Civic/Mellon Arena had a pretty attendance percentage, but lower overall numbers due to it's relatively small size.
  4. BaronFel88 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2004
    star 7
    I share The Sports Guy's (Bill Simmons) stance on Gary Bettman: that David Stern, wanting to sabotage the rival NHL in the mid-90s, pushed his underling to the league in a Fredo Corleone-like move. And it worked brilliantly. Now the NHL has too many teams in too many terrible markets. Gotta slash the league to 24 teams.

    I'd cut the Panthers, Coyotes, Islanders, Lightning, Thrashers and Blue Jackets.
  5. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    'Tis true Bettman hasn't a clue about hockey.
  6. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    Phoenix is doing well right now, though. Well, at least on the ice. I'm not sure about their attendance records. The Isles look to be on the upswing soon with Tavares, too.
  7. BaronFel88 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2004
    star 7
    But there just isn't enough talent to support 30 teams. Same goes for the NBA and MLB.
  8. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    Twenty teams at the most.
  9. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    Part 3...

    "Phoenix Coyotes purchase bid

    See also: 2009 Bankruptcy Filing

    On May 5, 2009, Balsillie made an offer of $212.5 million to purchase the Phoenix Coyotes following the team's filing for bankruptcy protection in Arizona. In a press release from Toronto, Ontario,[16] the offer to purchase is conditional on relocation to Southern Ontario. At the request of the current owner of the Phoenix Coyotes, Balsillie agreed to post debtor-in-possession financing of $17.0 million U.S. dollars to allow the Phoenix Coyotes to operate in advance of a restructuring or a sale. A few hours later, the NHL removed Coyotes owner, Jerry Moyes, from all decision making regarding the future of the Phoenix Coyotes, as the NHL has had control over the team and all holdings since Moyes signed a proxy agreement. This is to be disputed in court on May 19, 2009 in Phoenix Bankruptcy Court.[17]

    Balsillie's latest efforts also include the creation of a large public relations campaign, Make it Seven, purportedly to curry favor in the court of public opinion prior to the upcoming bankruptcy hearing for the Phoenix Coyotes Organization, as represented by the NHL.[18] The name of the campaign refers to increasing the current number of NHL franchises located in Canada to seven. Aspects of this PR strategy include the creation of a website that accumulates signatories in favor of moving the team to southern Ontario, Canada.[16]

    On May 13, 2009, The Canadian Press reported on TSN.ca that Balsillie won the exclusive rights to Hamilton's Copps Coliseum until November after a unanimous vote by Hamilton city council. On May 29, 2009, Balsillie unveiled his plans to renovate the Coliseum into a state-of-the-art facility in anticipation of a NHL franchise coming to Hamilton.[19]

    On May 16, 2009, Balsillie welcomed Labatt Breweries and Home Hardware into the fold as his first two "anchor corporate partners."[20]
    [edit] Rulings on Coyotes

    On June 15, 2009, Judge Redfield T. Baum rejected Balsillie?s bid to purchase the Coyotes.[21][22][23] Judge Baum?s ruling included that he did not have the power to force the team to move and that Balsillie?s June 29 deadline did not give the court enough time to resolve all the issues in the case.[21][22][23]

    On August 5, 2009, Judge Baum ruled that Balsillie could take part in the auction for the team on September 10.[24]

    On September 30, 2009, Balsillie's bid was again rejected by Judge Baum, who also rejected the NHL's bid. Balsille's bid was rejected "with prejudice," so he will be unable to make another bid for the Coyotes. Balsillie stated he will not appeal the decision.[25]"
  10. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    While that might be true, how do you propose going about fixing the problem? Would you propose a lottery draft for the players of the would-be defunct teams, or something different?
  11. BaronFel88 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2004
    star 7
    Yup. Rank the 24 surviving teams and let 'em go at the six contracted rosters for a few rounds and turn the remaining players into free agents.
  12. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    Hmm...I guess that could work. It would cause a lot of headaches trying to figure out a new market value for players on the teams that get the axe. They'd also have to significantly increase the salary cap, which could make things testy with the players.

    Panthers, Coyotes, Islanders, Lightning, Thrashers and Blue Jackets

    If I would be in charge of this operation, I'd get rid of Florida, Tampa Bay, Phoenix, and Nashville. If any team in the South deserves a team, it's Atlanta. I'm also hesitant about axing Columbus because it's a new franchise. The Isles have too much history to get the axe, too. If you'd get rid of six teams, I'm not quite sure who else I'd go with. [face_thinking]

    I would like to say New Jersey, but that's so the Pens don't have to face Broduer frequently. :p
  13. BaronFel88 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2004
    star 7
    The Predators are so irrelevant that I forgot to put them in my list. So I'm keeping Columbus but axing Nashville. I'll give the Blue Jackets a shot because despite their small market size they might strengthen ties to the Ohio State/Columbus community.

    As far as the South goes, they can all go except for the Hurricanes. I think Raleigh has has rallied behind the team since their Cup and the fans acquit themselves pretty well. Atlanta on the other hand, doesn't deserve any pro teams because the populace there treats them with total apathy.
  14. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
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    The 'Canes are a pretty big draw in Raleigh. They're the only professional team in a college town.

    I know that Atlanta fans are not the greatest, but I'm still not completely sold on getting rid of the Thrashers. I suppose that Big D doesn't count in as being in the South, though? :p

    I think that I'd get rid of one of the California teams, to make it six. I don't know if LA and Anaheim are both really necessary. Since they're just the Ducks, and not the Mighty Ducks, Anaheim gets the axe. :p
  15. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    The problem is that 6 people have paid $50,000,000 to have a team. How are you going to compensate them?
  16. Darth Tunes SfC Part III Commissioner

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 26, 2000
    star 10

    No, they are. The Kings have a pretty loyal fan base (though I don't care for them :p ), and the Ducks have won a Stanley Cup recently (and have a good fan base as well).

    2008-2009 L.A. Lakers: World Champions! :cool:
  17. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    That's not as easy as figuring out what to do with the players. :p

    I don't imagine that the NHL would have that kind of capital to buy out the owners, and I don't know if the remaining hypothetical owners would work together to buy out the unlucky few. This is why any sort of massive deflation won't happen.

    I know that Anaheim has a solid fan base, with a success in the Stanley Cup. Gretzky played for the Kings, so they won't be going anywhere, either. I'm just trying to think of teams that could get the axe if this would ever happen. :p
  18. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    The obvious candidates for immediate moves:

    the Florida Panthers and the Tampa Bay Lightning - one to Quebec City, one to Portland

    the Phoenix Coyotes - transfer back to Winnipeg

    the Atlanta Flames, I mean Thrashers - Seattle

    the Nashville Predators - Wisconsin

    the Carolina Hurricanes - Salt Lake City



  19. s65horsey Otter-loving Former EUC Mod

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2006
    star 7
    Why are you sending a team to Wisconsin? Has Wisconsin ever had a professional Hockey team?
  20. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
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    What makes Carolina an obvious candidate for being moved? They're the only pro team in the city, and they've got a pretty decent fan base. They even got Bill Cowher to convert from a Pens fan to a 'Canes fan. :mad:

    I'd move Nashville to Salt Lake City over Wisconsin, and keep the 'Canes put.
  21. BaronFel88 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2004
    star 7
    A Seattle team wouldn't work: the Pacific Northwest isn't big enough for the Canucks and another team.
  22. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    North Carolina is college sport territory.

    Don't tell me that the Canucks have any fans in Washington State, because I wouldn't believe it. And Seattle has been abandoned by pro basketball.

    I chose Wisconsin because: a. it's a snow belt area; and b. it supports a NFL team.
  23. Darth McClain Arena Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Feb 5, 2000
    star 6
    So, you're really not a fan of non-traditional hockey spots, eh? :p

    I think that Raleigh is one of those non-traditional hockey markets that seems to be doing pretty well. They should probably still be in Hartford, but, they're doing pretty well in Carolina.
  24. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    Do I like basketball?

    Not much.
  25. Zaz Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 11, 1998
    star 9
    HOT rumours that Phoenix will be stored to Winnipeg, and that the NHL will transfer another team to Quebec City.

    I'll believe it when I see it.

    Wonder what the other owners thought when they were outbid for talent at the trading deadline by Phoenix, a team they actually own, and are paying for.