Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Penguins sale problems resolved? Not anytime soon

A story in today's Pittsburgh Tribune-Review says the Penguins sale, and subsequently whether the team stays in Pittsburgh, will not be resolved anytime soon.

Questions delay sale of Penguins

As a matter of fact, this article says the team may be taken off the market.

If the current owners, including former team captain Mario Lemieux, cannot reach a sales agreement, they could withdraw their offer to sell the team. That would give them time to resolve questions preventing a sale at a price they want.


Of course, the whole thing hinges on the new arena.

Issues blocking the sale include the asking price -- of around $175 million -- and questions about whether Pittsburgh will get an arena, who would pay for the arena and the potential for relocating the team if there is no arena.

Many of the arena issues could be settled in December, when state gambling regulators are expected to award a slots license for Pittsburgh.


Also today, is a story about how the Mayor may go directly to those bidding on the Penguins to try to get them to accept Plan B by passing the current Penguins' leadership.

Mayor to ask new Pens owners to accept Plan B
He said he had gotten no response from the team to a letter dated Friday, in which he asked it to commit to staying here and to the "Plan B" arena funding blueprint crafted by Gov. Ed Rendell.


Regardless, this situation is not going to be solved any time soon.

6 Comments:

At 9:18 AM, Anonymous Topeka Blade said...

I don't think this is likely, but as this drags out, I have wondered about the possibility of the ownership group deciding to keep the team. That, too, would hinge on the how the arena question is settled, but I'm not sure I would rule it out completely.

 
At 12:16 PM, Anonymous MPoort said...

Have you seen this article from the Toronto Star yet? (Ballsillie denies report in Pittsburg Post-Gazette that he is the current top-bidder for the Pens).

http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_Type1&c=Article&pubid=968163964505&cid=1158313812484&col=968705923364&call_page=TS_Business&call_pageid=968350072197&call_pagepath=Business/News

 
At 12:21 PM, Anonymous MPoort said...

Well, that so TOTALLY didn't work (trying to put the link in the comments). Here's the article instead; feel free to clip it and post it in the main blog instead if you want.

RIM Boss Denies Report on Penguins Bid
Sep. 15, 2006. 06:18 PM
CANADIAN PRESS [Toronto Star]

WATERLOO, Ont. — The chairman of Waterloo, Ont.-based RIM, the makers of the BlackBerry, denied Friday a published report that he was now the front-runner to buy the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, citing sources with knowledge of the sale, reported in Friday’s edition that Canadian Jim Balsillie, chairman and co-CEO of Research in Motion, has emerged the top candidate to buy the NHL team from Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux.

But reached Friday by the Waterloo Region Record, Balsillie denied it.

“No, it’s not true,” he told the newspaper.

Asked by the Region Record if he was involved or planning to be involved in any other way with the Penguins, Balsillie replied: “I don’t comment on speculation.”

A source close to the team told The Canadian Press on Friday that Balsillie was in fact in talks with the Penguins.

Balsillie, according to the Post-Gazette, was revealed as the secretive Canadian bidder who nearly signed a letter of intent with the Penguins in mid-July, the Post-Gazette reported. He apparently wanted to move the team to Hamilton, Ont., and backed out when he realized it wouldn’t be simple to do so.

Now the Post-Gazette says he’s back in the hunt after Hartford real-estate developer Sam Fingold failed in reaching a purchase agreement following his letter of intent in late July.

A new owner would be bound to the team’s arrangement with Isle of Capri Gaming, which will donate US$290 million toward a new arena in Pittsburgh if it is awarded the city’s slots licence later this year. The team’s lease at Mellon Arena expires in June, and Penguins officials maintain they need a new venue to be viable in Pittsburgh.

Should Balsillie win out, he comes into the NHL fold with deep pockets. The explosion of BlackBerrys has generated RIM’s rapid growth. In late June, RIM (TSX: RIM) issued better-than-expected results for its fiscal first quarter along with a rosy outlook for BlackBerry sales. The firm brought in revenues of US$613.1 million in the three months ended June 3, up 35 per cent from $453.9 million in the same period a year earlier — beating the consensus analysts’ estimate by about $10 million.

 
At 1:42 PM, Anonymous dale said...

AHL! AHL! AHL!

Time for KC to start looking for an AHL team: got a lot of time to make up.

 
At 1:24 PM, Blogger Max said...

Yea, could you focus some of your excellent coverage on the likelihood of bringing an AHL franchise to KC? What franchises are for sale? What franchises are struggling? Who could be eyeing KC? Is it even feasible so long as Paul McGannon has his heart set on the NHL?

 
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