Balsillie's NHL faceoffs

SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:07 AM ET

Oct. 5, 2006: Reports indicate the Blackberry billionaire is attempting to buy the financially-troubled Pittsburgh Penguins (who are having problems getting a new rink built) for $175 (all figures U.S.) million from superstar Mario Lemieux and his ownership group. Balsillie's plan is to move the franchise to the Copps Coliseum in Hamilton and upgrade the building. The deal needs approval from the NHL board of governors.

Dec. 15, 2006: Balsillie quickly withdraws his bid to buy the Penguins. He is told by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman that the NHL wouldn't allow him to move the team to Hamilton if he makes the purchase. Balsillie is informed he simply isn't going to get approval from the board of governors.

May, 24, 2007: Balsillie signs a letter of intent to buy the Nashville Predators from Craig Leopold for $238 million. The Predators rank No. 21 in the league in attendance and there is a clause in the lease at the Sommet Center that allows them to relocate if the situation does not get better.

May, 31, 2007: Balsillie establishes a season ticket drive in Hamilton and announces he is prepared to move the Predators to the Steel City for the 2007-08 season. He has a deal with the city which includes exclusive negotiating rights for an NHL team lease in the building.

June 14, 2007: Balsillie begins to accept season ticket deposits for the Hamilton Predators. It's believed more than 12,000 fans pledged their support. League officials aren't impressed with the decison by Balsillie to hold the campaign.

June 27, 2007: After pressure from the NHL, Leopold pulls out his agreement with Balsillie. "We did send the NHL a letter today requesting that it not do any further due diligence on Jim Balsillie's offer for the Nashville Predators until we reach a binding agreement. If Jim is interested in reaching a binding agreement, we are prepared to move forward," Leopold said in a statement.

June 28, 2007: Leopold agrees to a $190 million sale price with California businessman William (Boots) Delbaggio.

May 6, 2008: Reports indicate Balsillie has held talks with Buffalo Sabres owner Tom Golisano, who has no interest in any deal that is going to move the team out of Buffalo.

May 5, 2009: Balsillie sends out a press release to confirm he has made a bid to buy the financially troubled Phoenix Coyotes for a price $212.5 million from owner Jerry Moyes and the intention is to move the team to southern Ontario. With the league closing in on a deal with Chicago Bulls/White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf, Moyes files for bankruptcy protection in an Arizona court. "The focus is the courts have to make a decision on the offer I've made," Balsillie said at a news conference. "This is a very serious and committed offer. It's financed and fully backed."


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