Bettman: 3 groups in Coyotes bidding
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NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Thursday there are three groups showing "serious" interest in buying the Phoenix Coyotes with the intention of keeping the team in Glendale, Ariz.
Without going into detail, Bettman revealed there was a third group in his weekly radio show broadcast from Ottawa, where the All-Star Game is being held this weekend.
"There are probably three different groups that are taking a serious look at buying the Coyotes to keep them where they're located," Bettman said in a broadcast that also aired on the NHL Network.
He added that Glendale is also "very much part of the equation," referring to the city that paid out $25 million in each of the past two seasons to keep the Coyotes while the NHL operates the team and seeks an owner. The NHL purchased the team out of bankruptcy in 2009.
The two groups known to have expressed interest in the Coyotes are one led by former San Jose Sharks president and CEO Greg Jamison and another by Chicago sports mogul Jerry Reinsdorf . Bettman called the sales process a "work in progress" and hopes to prevent the Coyotes from relocating.
"We're going to try to avoid a move of the Coyotes, but, if we don't sell the club, I'm not sure that this won't be the last season here," he said.
The Coyotes' future is expected to be discussed Saturday at the Board of Governors meeting in Ottawa. Bettman will address the media after the meeting. The NHL had a relocation last year, when the Atlanta Thrashers moved to Winnipeg to become the Jets. It was the Jets who moved to Phoenix to become the Coyotes in 1996.
The governor of Massachusetts said a Boston goalie's decision to skip a White House ceremony with President Barack Obama honoring the Stanley Cup champions points to the country's growing loss of "basic courtesy and grace." Tim Thomas said he skipped the event Monday because the federal government was "out of control," but he blamed both parties. Gov. Deval Patrick was asked about the snub Thursday on his monthly radio program.
San Jose acquired forward Tim Kennedy, 25, in a trade with Florida that sent defenseman Sean Sullivan, 27, to the Panthers. The Sharks assigned Kennedy to their Worcester of the American Hockey League. Kennedy had two points in 27 games with Florida, and Sullivan was second among Worcester defensemen with 24 points in 32 games.
First Published January 27, 2012 12:00 am