No NHL for now, but city preparing for next opportunity

News Oct 01, 2009 Ancaster News

Hamilton may have lost this game, but city officials are preparing for the next contest to secure an NHL franchise.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger refused to characterize the decision by Arizona

bankruptcy judge Redfield Baum rejecting Canadian billionaire Jim

Balsillie’s offer “with prejudice”  to purchase the

financially-strapped Arizona Coyotes as a “blow” to the city.Instead,

the mayor and the rest of the city’s politicians wanted to look at

Hamilton’s future prospects to acquire an NHL franchise.

“No, not at all,” said Mr. Eisenberger. “Hamiltonians always knew there

was only a 50-50 chance of Mr. Balsillie succeeding. It didn’t pan out.

But I firmly believe there are other opportunities out there. We are in

a fabulous position.”

Mr. Balsillie, who was denied an opportunity to buy an NHL franchise

for the third time, said in a statement he will not appeal Judge Baum’s

decision, which rejected both his $242.5 million bid and the NHL’s $140

million offer.

“From the beginning, my attempt to relocate the Coyotes to Hamilton has

been about Canadian hockey fans and Canadian hockey,” said Mr.

Balsillie in a statement on the Make It Seven website. “It was a chance

to realize a dream. All I wanted was a fair chance to bring a seventh

NHL team to Canada. I respect the court’s decision and I will not be

putting forward an appeal.”

NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly was “pleased” the “Bankruptcy Court

has confirmed the league’s right to select its owners and the locations

of its franchises. It remains our goal to secure the long-term

stability of the Coyotes.”

Mr. Eisenberger said he was scheduled to talk to Mr. Balsillie Oct. 1.

But the next move for the city, said the mayor and other councillors is

to build bridges with the NHL in the hopes of acquiring an NHL either

through an expansion process or relocating an existing franchise.

“There are nine NHL teams in the (U.S.) south that are in trouble,” said Mayor Eisenberger. “There are opportunities there.”

Mayor Eisenberger said he expects the city’s exclusive agreement with

Mr. Balsillie signed last spring will expire after it ends at the end

of October. The agreement allowed Mr. Balsillie to take over Copps

Coliseum and Hamilton Entertainment Convention and Facilities Inc. Mr.

Balsillie had unveiled a $5 million plan to upgrade the 1985 arena to

NHL standards.

The mayor confirmed again that the city will “look at other options”,

and that city officials have had discussions with other representatives

to locate an NHL team in Hamilton. He refused to divulge any details.

Ward 8 (west Mountain) councillor Terry Whitehead, chair of the city’s

NHL sub-committee, said the city should reach out to the NHL, including

commissioner Gary Bettman.

“They have stated that Hamilton is a viable hockey market,” said Coun.

Whitehead. “We should talk to them to see how we can secure a team.”

The mayor and other politicians applauded Mr. Balsillie for his efforts

to buy the Coyotes, which, they said, not only raised the profile of

Hamilton throughout North America, but also proved the city can support

an NHL franchise.

“He has done a spectacular job highlighting Hamilton,” said Mayor

Eisenberger. “We have a much better hope of securing an NHL franchise.

?Added Mr. Whitehead, “The NHL has acknowledged by there is a need and

a vacuum in Hamilton that needs to be filled. All Mr. Balsillie wanted

was to be given a fair chance.”

Mountain councillor Tom Jackson said Judge Baum “took the easy way out” by deciding against both the NHL and Mr. Balsillie.

“It’s a real shame. The powers that be took hold.”

Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson said a great “sigh” could be heard throughout Hamilton after the judge’s decision Sept. 30.

“It’s (the NHL’s) club. It’s their rules.”

Judge Baum seemed to side with the NHL in his 28-page decision. His

decision leaves the fate of the Coyotes in the NHL’s hands, even though

it didn’t win outright.

“In hockey parlance, the court is passing the puck to the NHL, who can

decide to take another shot at the sale net or it can pass off the

puck,” Judge Baum wrote in his decision.

The judge wrote Mr. Balsillie’s bid was rejected because the

entrepreneur could not get the approval of the NHL to move the Coyotes

to Hamilton.

“In the final analysis, the court cannot find or conclude that the

interests of the NHL can be adequately protected if the Coyotes are

moved to Hamilton without first having a final decision regarding the

claimed rights of the NHL,” wrote Judge Baum.

No NHL for now, but city preparing for next opportunity

News Oct 01, 2009 Ancaster News

Hamilton may have lost this game, but city officials are preparing for the next contest to secure an NHL franchise.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger refused to characterize the decision by Arizona

bankruptcy judge Redfield Baum rejecting Canadian billionaire Jim

Balsillie’s offer “with prejudice”  to purchase the

financially-strapped Arizona Coyotes as a “blow” to the city.Instead,

the mayor and the rest of the city’s politicians wanted to look at

Hamilton’s future prospects to acquire an NHL franchise.

“No, not at all,” said Mr. Eisenberger. “Hamiltonians always knew there

was only a 50-50 chance of Mr. Balsillie succeeding. It didn’t pan out.

But I firmly believe there are other opportunities out there. We are in

a fabulous position.”

Mr. Balsillie, who was denied an opportunity to buy an NHL franchise

for the third time, said in a statement he will not appeal Judge Baum’s

decision, which rejected both his $242.5 million bid and the NHL’s $140

million offer.

“From the beginning, my attempt to relocate the Coyotes to Hamilton has

been about Canadian hockey fans and Canadian hockey,” said Mr.

Balsillie in a statement on the Make It Seven website. “It was a chance

to realize a dream. All I wanted was a fair chance to bring a seventh

NHL team to Canada. I respect the court’s decision and I will not be

putting forward an appeal.”

NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly was “pleased” the “Bankruptcy Court

has confirmed the league’s right to select its owners and the locations

of its franchises. It remains our goal to secure the long-term

stability of the Coyotes.”

Mr. Eisenberger said he was scheduled to talk to Mr. Balsillie Oct. 1.

But the next move for the city, said the mayor and other councillors is

to build bridges with the NHL in the hopes of acquiring an NHL either

through an expansion process or relocating an existing franchise.

“There are nine NHL teams in the (U.S.) south that are in trouble,” said Mayor Eisenberger. “There are opportunities there.”

Mayor Eisenberger said he expects the city’s exclusive agreement with

Mr. Balsillie signed last spring will expire after it ends at the end

of October. The agreement allowed Mr. Balsillie to take over Copps

Coliseum and Hamilton Entertainment Convention and Facilities Inc. Mr.

Balsillie had unveiled a $5 million plan to upgrade the 1985 arena to

NHL standards.

The mayor confirmed again that the city will “look at other options”,

and that city officials have had discussions with other representatives

to locate an NHL team in Hamilton. He refused to divulge any details.

Ward 8 (west Mountain) councillor Terry Whitehead, chair of the city’s

NHL sub-committee, said the city should reach out to the NHL, including

commissioner Gary Bettman.

“They have stated that Hamilton is a viable hockey market,” said Coun.

Whitehead. “We should talk to them to see how we can secure a team.”

The mayor and other politicians applauded Mr. Balsillie for his efforts

to buy the Coyotes, which, they said, not only raised the profile of

Hamilton throughout North America, but also proved the city can support

an NHL franchise.

“He has done a spectacular job highlighting Hamilton,” said Mayor

Eisenberger. “We have a much better hope of securing an NHL franchise.

?Added Mr. Whitehead, “The NHL has acknowledged by there is a need and

a vacuum in Hamilton that needs to be filled. All Mr. Balsillie wanted

was to be given a fair chance.”

Mountain councillor Tom Jackson said Judge Baum “took the easy way out” by deciding against both the NHL and Mr. Balsillie.

“It’s a real shame. The powers that be took hold.”

Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson said a great “sigh” could be heard throughout Hamilton after the judge’s decision Sept. 30.

“It’s (the NHL’s) club. It’s their rules.”

Judge Baum seemed to side with the NHL in his 28-page decision. His

decision leaves the fate of the Coyotes in the NHL’s hands, even though

it didn’t win outright.

“In hockey parlance, the court is passing the puck to the NHL, who can

decide to take another shot at the sale net or it can pass off the

puck,” Judge Baum wrote in his decision.

The judge wrote Mr. Balsillie’s bid was rejected because the

entrepreneur could not get the approval of the NHL to move the Coyotes

to Hamilton.

“In the final analysis, the court cannot find or conclude that the

interests of the NHL can be adequately protected if the Coyotes are

moved to Hamilton without first having a final decision regarding the

claimed rights of the NHL,” wrote Judge Baum.

No NHL for now, but city preparing for next opportunity

News Oct 01, 2009 Ancaster News

Hamilton may have lost this game, but city officials are preparing for the next contest to secure an NHL franchise.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger refused to characterize the decision by Arizona

bankruptcy judge Redfield Baum rejecting Canadian billionaire Jim

Balsillie’s offer “with prejudice”  to purchase the

financially-strapped Arizona Coyotes as a “blow” to the city.Instead,

the mayor and the rest of the city’s politicians wanted to look at

Hamilton’s future prospects to acquire an NHL franchise.

“No, not at all,” said Mr. Eisenberger. “Hamiltonians always knew there

was only a 50-50 chance of Mr. Balsillie succeeding. It didn’t pan out.

But I firmly believe there are other opportunities out there. We are in

a fabulous position.”

Mr. Balsillie, who was denied an opportunity to buy an NHL franchise

for the third time, said in a statement he will not appeal Judge Baum’s

decision, which rejected both his $242.5 million bid and the NHL’s $140

million offer.

“From the beginning, my attempt to relocate the Coyotes to Hamilton has

been about Canadian hockey fans and Canadian hockey,” said Mr.

Balsillie in a statement on the Make It Seven website. “It was a chance

to realize a dream. All I wanted was a fair chance to bring a seventh

NHL team to Canada. I respect the court’s decision and I will not be

putting forward an appeal.”

NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly was “pleased” the “Bankruptcy Court

has confirmed the league’s right to select its owners and the locations

of its franchises. It remains our goal to secure the long-term

stability of the Coyotes.”

Mr. Eisenberger said he was scheduled to talk to Mr. Balsillie Oct. 1.

But the next move for the city, said the mayor and other councillors is

to build bridges with the NHL in the hopes of acquiring an NHL either

through an expansion process or relocating an existing franchise.

“There are nine NHL teams in the (U.S.) south that are in trouble,” said Mayor Eisenberger. “There are opportunities there.”

Mayor Eisenberger said he expects the city’s exclusive agreement with

Mr. Balsillie signed last spring will expire after it ends at the end

of October. The agreement allowed Mr. Balsillie to take over Copps

Coliseum and Hamilton Entertainment Convention and Facilities Inc. Mr.

Balsillie had unveiled a $5 million plan to upgrade the 1985 arena to

NHL standards.

The mayor confirmed again that the city will “look at other options”,

and that city officials have had discussions with other representatives

to locate an NHL team in Hamilton. He refused to divulge any details.

Ward 8 (west Mountain) councillor Terry Whitehead, chair of the city’s

NHL sub-committee, said the city should reach out to the NHL, including

commissioner Gary Bettman.

“They have stated that Hamilton is a viable hockey market,” said Coun.

Whitehead. “We should talk to them to see how we can secure a team.”

The mayor and other politicians applauded Mr. Balsillie for his efforts

to buy the Coyotes, which, they said, not only raised the profile of

Hamilton throughout North America, but also proved the city can support

an NHL franchise.

“He has done a spectacular job highlighting Hamilton,” said Mayor

Eisenberger. “We have a much better hope of securing an NHL franchise.

?Added Mr. Whitehead, “The NHL has acknowledged by there is a need and

a vacuum in Hamilton that needs to be filled. All Mr. Balsillie wanted

was to be given a fair chance.”

Mountain councillor Tom Jackson said Judge Baum “took the easy way out” by deciding against both the NHL and Mr. Balsillie.

“It’s a real shame. The powers that be took hold.”

Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson said a great “sigh” could be heard throughout Hamilton after the judge’s decision Sept. 30.

“It’s (the NHL’s) club. It’s their rules.”

Judge Baum seemed to side with the NHL in his 28-page decision. His

decision leaves the fate of the Coyotes in the NHL’s hands, even though

it didn’t win outright.

“In hockey parlance, the court is passing the puck to the NHL, who can

decide to take another shot at the sale net or it can pass off the

puck,” Judge Baum wrote in his decision.

The judge wrote Mr. Balsillie’s bid was rejected because the

entrepreneur could not get the approval of the NHL to move the Coyotes

to Hamilton.

“In the final analysis, the court cannot find or conclude that the

interests of the NHL can be adequately protected if the Coyotes are

moved to Hamilton without first having a final decision regarding the

claimed rights of the NHL,” wrote Judge Baum.