NHL brass impressed by Winnipeg co-owners
PAUL FRIESEN, QMI Agency
WINNIPEG - It appears the co-owners of Winnipeg’s new NHL franchise made quite an impression on the NHL’s executive committee, Tuesday.
Mark Chipman and David Thomson appeared to update the league’s most influential governors on their purchase and relocation of the Atlanta Thrashers.
“They had a compelling story to tell on why NHL hockey in Winnipeg could and would be successful,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told the Sun, Tuesday. “The members of the executive committee to a man were very impressed.”
The Winnipeg contingent’s presentation included an update on the wildly successful season-ticket drive, which saw 13,000 tickets sell in a matter of days, including the last 6,000 in a general public sale that lasted just minutes.
An “overwhelming success,” is how Daly described the drive. “And compelling evidence that this organization and team can achieve immediate business success in Winnipeg.”
The public response here, and Chipman and Thomson’s appearance in New York, should help pave the way for a positive vote by the entire board of governors, when it convenes to pass judgment on the Winnipeg-Atlanta transaction, June 21.
A 75% ‘yes’ vote is needed to approve the new owners, while a simple majority of governors’ support is necessary to relocate a franchise.
True North’s purchase of the Thrashers is subject to that approval.