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Glendale officials have “no idea” if Jamison can complete Coyotes purchase

Jan 27, 2013, 8:37 PM EDT

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The Phoenix Coyotes’ ownership/arena lease situation seems like it’s had an endless series of deadlines in the past few years, but Thursday looks like a crucial one. That’s when potential new owner Greg Jamison needs to complete the purchase of the team to maintain the latest deal, but a report in the Arizona Republic indicates that it’s far from a sure thing.

Glendale’s new Mayor Jerry Weiers ranks among those who doubt it can get done on time.

“For the life of me, I can’t figure why, if everything is lined up, if he’s got the money in hand, why would he postpone this? That’s the only thing I haven’t been able to figure out,” Weiers said. “What would be the purpose of delaying it?”

Jamison expressed vague optimism to the Arizona Republic about everything working out when asked last week. Still, this report lays out why missing Thursday’s deadline could be perilous:

If he misses the deadline, the agreement will expire, and with it the goodwill of a previous City Council that offered Jamison lucrative terms that would pay him to manage the 17,125-seat arena.

Glendale voters replaced four of the seven members of the City Council in November, and the new contingent seems unlikely to extend Jamison, or any other potential hockey-team owner, another contract as sweet as the one awaiting Jamison’s signature.

Weiers is one of those newcomers and he reinforced that notion.

“I told Jamison that as opposed as I was to the deal — I thought that the city didn’t get a very good deal out of it — the fact is that the council made that decision,” Weiers said. “The deal that was made said that he has until the 31st to put it together. I’ll honor that, but I also told him that I wouldn’t honor it one second past that.”

This saga has seen countless twists and turns, yet it sounds like the headaches could get larger if Jamison cannot find answers next week.

Related

Report: Jamison still searching for financing

Report: Jamison on verge of making sale happen

  1. missthemexpos - Jan 27, 2013 at 8:50 PM

    Not many soap operas left these days, you have General Hospital, Days of Our Lives, The Bold and The Beautiful, The Young and The Restless, and of course The Continuing Saga of The Phoenix Coyotes.

  2. rupertslander - Jan 27, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    If Jamison ever had the investors, and I’m not convinced he ever did, they pulled out after reading the new CBA. You don’t need an MBA to see there’s not nearly enough concessions from the players to make the Coyotes viable in Phoenix.

    • comeonnowguys - Jan 27, 2013 at 10:25 PM

      Right. Player concessions. That’s why they have a hard time cracking the Top 25 in attendance.

      • rupertslander - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:16 PM

        I was referring to the financial concessions the players made in the CBA.

      • rupertslander - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:26 PM

        Specifically, the way the current CBA is structured, it has been estimated that the players’ share of revenue would need to be reduced to 23-27% for the Phoenix Coyotes to break even.

      • comeonnowguys - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:30 PM

        That’s all fine and well, but had they got what they needed out of the CBA, you can’t negotiate bad attendance. They’ve struggled mightily for a majority of their stay in Arizona to get people to come to the games.

      • rupertslander - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:58 PM

        I’m not sure if you’re trying to disagree with me or just trying to articulate my point in your own way.

        In any event, it’s always seemed very fishy to me that Jamison refuses to name his partners. You look at every other deal where an investment group buys a major sports team to keep them in town – every time, the investors are all clearly identified, and, all or mostly have extensive ties to the community – especially the head(s) of the investment group.

        Look at Nashville, for example – the Predators were bought by a group of local businessmen who mostly had extensive ties to the city and whose identities became known within days, including the one big out of town investor who later turned out to be a fraud.

        Greg Jamison does not appear to have particularily extensive ties to Arizona. And, frankly, it amazes me that the media has proven unable to out Jamison’s supposed partners even after all this time, because more often than not that’s because they just don’t exist.

        So, if we give Jamison the benefit of every doubt in assuming Jamison’s partners do in fact exist, why do they crave anonymity? Are they shady people? Have they just not yet committed to investing with Jamison? Or, perhaps, do they just want to stay under the radar so they don’t look like easy marks for every con man with a questionable investment to sell.

      • comeonnowguys - Jan 28, 2013 at 9:42 AM

        To be fair, the initial point seemed to frame the CBA as the reason the Coyotes would move. It was after reading the rest of this section, and then your points lower in the discussion, that we basically agree on most things on this matter.

    • scrouch - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:30 AM

      Agreed. For the Coyotes to be viable in Phoenix the new CBA would have needed the players to pretty much not get paid, and to work the concession stands between periods. Bet he was shocked to see there were still player salaries in the new CBA.

  3. bcflyfishing - Jan 27, 2013 at 10:22 PM

    just sell the team to someone that will move them to Seattle or KC or Southern Ontario or Quebec and lets be done with it. Tired of this game

    • nobandwagoners - Jan 27, 2013 at 10:43 PM

      Seattle please.

      • rupertslander - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:14 PM

        Quebec first – Seattle should prove it can support basketball, and if it can then we can talk about putting hockey there too.

      • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:35 AM

        Not that Quebec has ever lost a team due to relocation.

        Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to see Quebec get a team and they should be a front runner to get one, but don’t dis Seattle for losing a sports team and not do the same with Quebec

      • sw19womble - Jan 28, 2013 at 4:02 AM

        Whilst Seattle would be a great market, the NHL needs to shore up its core base first and put a team back in Quebec.
        Right the wrongs before a somewhat risky expansion/creation of a Pacific Northwest “rivalry”.
        But something needs to be done about the Coyotes – they’re dragging the entire NHL down.
        Deadweight.

    • esracerx46 - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:51 PM

      I dont get why KC is even in the argument to get a team. Did everyone forget they had a team once and couldnt make it work. Do we need another Atlanta. The Seattle are can support hockey. Just look at all the WHL teams in that area. And the argument to see if Seattle can support basketball first and then hockey is just plain dumb. You put a good product on the ice, people will show up. Look at what the Hawks did. Was wondering if anyone knew what kind of attendance the Toronto Raptors have? Just want to make sure the Toronto area can support hockey too.

      • rupertslander - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:25 AM

        OK then, I’ll modify my point – Quebec first, then Saskatoon, then we’ll talk about Seattle. After all, last time I checked there were more WHL teams in Saskatchewan than there are in Washington.

        What you say about Toronto makes no sense – because actually with MLSE, the very reason they acquired an NBA franchise was precisely because they didn’t have enough Leafs tickets to sell. Whereas Seattle has lost a basketball team once, which it looks like they’re now getting back – but you shouldn’t bite off more than you can chew. What if it turns out you can’t even sell out the reborn Sonics in your new arena?

        Why do think Houston’s quietly dropped out of the running to get an NHL team?

        But really you make my point by basically saying oh yes Seattle will support the NHL – IF they get a winning team every year. Well, not everyone gets a winning team every year. So, where should the Coyotes go if (when) they eventually get around to moving? Quebec, where they will sell out every night no matter how bad they are? Or Seattle, where apparently you’re saying the fans will be quick to dump a losing team.

      • scrouch - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:25 AM

        A good product on the ice? The Coyotes have been really good the last 3 seasons. They won their division and made the conference final last year. The product on the ice isn’t going to get much better than that. And no one shows up. 2nd home game of the year, under 8500 people. After a deep playoff run. That’s insane. A team can’t rely on people just showing up to watch their opposition. You can’t host the Hawks or Red Wings every night, eventually some people need to want to cheer for the home team as well.

  4. slickdemetrius - Jan 27, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    I do hope and anticipate Mr.Jamison also relocating to Quebec City. They could use another ticket scalper or pyramid scheme investor.

    • rupertslander - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:35 AM

      That would have been a funny joke, except that the would-be buyers in Quebec are real investors with real, legitimate and clearly visible sources of income.

      I don’t think they need Jamison or his supposed partners.

      • slickdemetrius - Jan 28, 2013 at 8:47 AM

        And that was all it was, a joke.
        Some individuals are a wee bit dense around here and you must not be familiar with a particular investment guru from the 90′s based out of the QC. But I’m sure you wouldn’t have any knowledge of that…

      • slickdemetrius - Jan 28, 2013 at 8:49 AM

        I am for a Quebec move, thus I belittled Jamison as a scalper/phony investor. Don’t have much reading comprehension there huh?

  5. scrouch - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    Don’t see how this is a long-term solution for the Coyotes. It doesn’t take long to purchase a franchise if you are able to do it. Look at Atlanta moving to Winnipeg. That was over in a couple weeks. It doesn’t take month and months to get it done. The lease agreement with Glendale was a bit of a roadblock to get things sorted out but if Jamison was actually able to do this you’d think it would have been done right after the agreement was made. Or if he wanted to wait until the CBA was signed, that’s been done and still nothing. It seems like either he doesn’t really have the resources to purchase it (so I have no idea how they expect him to deal with perpetual losses), or he’s having second thoughts. Not sure if having an announced attendance of 8,300 people at their 2nd home game of the season will help matters very much. They made it to the conference final last season and attendance is that low in the 2nd game?

    • rupertslander - Jan 28, 2013 at 12:29 AM

      There is no, repeat NO excuse for the building to be less than 1/2 full for a conference finalist.

  6. canadabaseball - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:19 AM

    I think u have to give up on the coyotes and sell the team to a group moving to qubec or south Ontario. Or maybe even saskatawon would work ( I could see this being a good fit as long as you are alright with them being a middle to small market team) and the only way u bring a team to Seattle Is I’f u get the same ownership group that bought the kings there, if not wait to see how basketball works out and wait for Florida, Dallas or another one of the southern teams to go under

    • greatminnesotasportsmind - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:41 AM

      Florida is starting to draw again. They had 15,634 against Ottawa the other day. Not bad for a southern market coming off a lockout

  7. ron05342 - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:32 AM

    I’ve been saying since early December, when Jamison had 60 days to close the deal, that he doesn’t have the investors to do so.

    Otherwise, it would have been done 56 days ago. Now with four days left, not a peep. If he couldn’t get it done a year ago, six months ago, 3 months ago, and even 60 days ago, what makes anyone thinks its going to get done in the next four days?

  8. cweez2 - Jan 28, 2013 at 10:01 AM

    The problem is the perception has become reality. The fans have given up because they essentially see a dead franchise, whether it’s true or not.

  9. tmoore4075 - Jan 28, 2013 at 10:12 AM

    If there is no deal by Thursday it’s all but done there. The new mayor seems less likely to want to help out the franchise. I feel bad for the city being stuck with an arena, the businesses that are around there and for the fans of the Coyotes. Sure people can get on the city for being part of this deal but the Coyotes have been a bad financial decision ever since they got there. If the Coyotes weren’t there the city wouldn’t have this arena. and I know some people will come back and say “what fans?” but there are fans. Even if it was only 200 fans I still feel bad for them. Just because there aren’t the numbers like in other cities doesn’t mean it will hurt any less for those true fans there.

    People have been posting about where they would go. Seattle and Quebec seem to be the most likely destinations. IF the rumors a few months ago that the NHL does want to expand then I expect the Coyotes to go to Seattle. I think Quebec is a more sure thing but if they are looking to expand the NHL can milk a much bigger expansion fee out of QC than they could out of Seattle. Saskatoon is not getting a team. The NHL was wary of going back to Winnipeg because of the size and QC might be the same and Saskatoon is even smaller than those places. It’s not just about people going to the games. It’s a big business.

    We won’t hear about the team moving until the end of May though which will just make this thing get drawn out even further with the NHL denying everything.

  10. badguy711 - Jan 28, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    rupertslander

    Seattle losing the Sonics had nothing to do with lack of support for the team. It was because the owner of Starbucks bought the team and decided the Arena, which was relatively young, was out of date. When Seattle refused to build another one, he sold the team, within 2 years of buying it, to the OKC group for a huge profit. The Seattle Fanbase, and city really, had nothing to do with it.

    • tmoore4075 - Jan 28, 2013 at 10:33 AM

      The arena was relatively young? Opened in 1962 so when he bought the team the arena 40 years old then. Was renovated in 95 but still was light years behind other modern arenas. You’re right about the rest of it. It was a bunch of crap that lead to the fans not showing up. Bad ownership all around from Shultz not doing a good job to selling to an OKC based group.

  11. darksidecowboy - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    Coyotes won’t be moving to Quebec. NHL wants the massive payment from expansion fees for Quebec and Toronto’s second team. If the sale falls though, the NHL would probably want to move the team to Seattle considering the new arena coming and also keeping the team in the same division. In the end this is definitely the desert dogs last hope with Jamison. I hope they can stay in PHX but the fans can’t take this uncertainty forever.

  12. sunk500 - Jan 29, 2013 at 9:53 AM

    Im so sick of reading about Quebec City and Saskatoon. Yes, Phoenix has attendance issues – that much we know. But the city also has a big metro and one of the biggest TV markets in the US.

    Now, I know ever fkn Canadian is screaming for an NHL team but the reality is that Quebec City has a metro of 700k, and Saskatoon has a metro of 200k while Seattle and Phoenix has a metro of 3.5 and 4.2 MILLION PEOPLE. So please stop asking for teams to move to these towns in Canada, and stop for a second and think about what that would do to the game.

    Keep in mind Phoenix and Seattle also has some of the best TV Markets in North America, so please remind me how moving a team from a city of 4.2million to a _town_ in Saskatoon is going to help the game? It wont.. Ever… Are you guys really that fkn stupid to think that selling tickets to a game is going to make the move from phoenix to Quebec or Saskatoon viable?

    Quebec and Winnipeg both had their fun and look how it ended – relocation for both. The return of the Jets is an experiment.

    If the Phoenix relocate, which they should, it should be to a big City like Seattle. NHL already wants more west coast team, it has a metro of 3.5million, top 15 TV market, built in rivalry with Canucks and most importantly it could support a NHL franchise while help growing the game.

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