The Maple Leafs believe a unanimous vote of approval is needed for a team to be relocated to Hamilton, not a majority vote like the league claims.
In the opinion of Buffalo Sabres majority owner Larry Quinn, both the Leafs and the NHL have legitimate arguments.
"I hope Gary (Bettman) is right," Quinn said yesterday from Buffalo. "But when you read the wording, it's hard not to think the Leafs are right.
"Gary's stance seems to be that teams have the veto right when another team plays a game in its territory, but not when it comes to the relocation of a team."
Quinn was asked about the Sabres' stance on territorial rights. "We haven't made any interpretations," he said. "We are just waiting to see how things play out before determining how to move forward."
Efforts by Blackberry boss Jim Balsillie to bring a team to Hamilton are obviously of interest to Quinn. An NHL franchise in Hamilton would affect the Golden Horseshoe market the Sabres draw from.
Quinn said he will be an interested observer when Judge Redfield T. Baum decides tomorrow if Balsillie is a qualified bidder for the Phoenix Coyotes, given that the NHL has already rejected his application for ownership.