Thursday, July 13, 2006

Contrasting stories from Pittsburgh and Hartford

On the same day a story ran in the Pittsburgh Trib-Review saying KC is going on a power play to attract an NHL team.

Kansas City goes on power play

A Hartford Courant story says that Sam Fingold says the team won't move.

This is EXTREMELY significant because Fingold is the only bidder for the team that has showed any interest in KC.

Penguins Move Won't Fly, Developer Says

But don't expect the relocation of the franchise, another bidder said Wednesday. Hartford developer Sam Fingold, who is attempting to purchase the Penguins with his father and brother, doesn't see the Penguins going anywhere.

"I know the Penguins' first goal is to keep the team in Pittsburgh, so I don't know what [Gottesdiener's] goal really is," Fingold said. "I have a hard time believing that team is leaving Pittsburgh."

Then, Fingold took a shot at Hartford's mayor. Remember, Fingold's U.S. home is in Hartford, as is Larry Gottesdiener's home. Gottesdiener is also bidding on the Penguins.

Hartford is not an alternative for Fingold, even though he is based in the city.

"I'd rather buy a team and put it in another city than have it in Hartford and deal with [Mayor] Eddie Perez, because I don't think he quite understands all the economics associated with bringing a team to the city," Fingold said. "You think Hartford should spend $290 million on a new arena vs. trying to figure out how to fix the school system and cut down crime?"

Told of Fingold's comment, Matt Hennessy, the mayor's chief of staff, said, "I think the city is excited that there are real developers with a history of success, such as Larry Gottesdiener, who are interested in bringing an NHL franchise to the city of Hartford."

Back to the Pittsburgh Trib review story, it says AEG will start selling the 1,800 club seats this fall.

The city sold all 72 luxury suites in Sprint Center, its new arena, and will start selling 1,800 club-level seats by fall. The publicly funded arena is scheduled to open in October 2007 and is trying to lure a hockey or basketball team.

OK, we know that is not right. According to a previous story in the KC Star, 63 of the 72 suites are sold because they are holding back nine suites for the future owner, etc.

The part about the club seats is the only new information in this story. AEG's Brenda Tinnen and NHL21's Paul McGannon both have quotes in the article, but it's the same spin.

I found this part interesting:
By contrast, Gov. Ed Rendell said Wednesday that his backup plan to build an arena in Pittsburgh would allow the Penguins to double -- maybe even triple -- the team's stadium revenue. His plan asks the team to pay $8.5 million up front and $2.9 million a year, while forgoing $1.1 million a year in naming rights.

The deal requires the team to pay 16 percent of the arena costs,

Now we have a little information about the type of lease AEG has to offer to lure the an NHL team.


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