Thread: News Article: Balsillie back in the bidding
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08-07-2009, 09:36 AM
Peter Puck
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Originally Posted by Azazel View Post
I doubt it. If you have one more team adding to the revenue sharing, and one less getting a handout, that translates to one more viable team fending for itself, and one less getting propped up. I see what you're saying, but I just don't think it works that way.

Furthermore, Hamilton and Toronto are 45 minutes from eachother. Very different than a place like Ottawa, which is 6 hours away. You'd know better than me, but is there a blackout of Canadiens games in Senator territory as well? I'm guessing no, but I could be wrong. That said, Hamilton and Toronto would essentially share the Southern Ontario market. There would be more support for Toronto east, and eventually more support for Hamilton west. As a Leaf fan, that doesn't concern me. There's no reason that the Leafs shouldn't earn for their fanbase. Why do they deserve to exploit us unchecked? I wouldn't mind the monopoly so much if the team was still in the hands of a competent owner, but that really hasn't happened since Smythe left. Let's not kid ourselves here. We're being taken advantage of. The average person can't afford tickets, and merchandise is expensive. Worst of all, the quality of the on-ice product is questionable about 50% of the time. As an investor in the team - and that's what we, as fans, are - this is unacceptable.
Yes Hab games are blacked out on Centre Ice too. Its up to the teams involved to reach an agreement. The Habs have offered (so Hab games would be available in Ottawa's region and Ottawa games in Montreal and area) but the Sens refused. Until the Sens agree many Leaf and Hab games are blacked out here.

Yes Hamilton is much closer but this doesn't mean there will be no problem. This is one of the things teams negotiate when they move. Part of Balsillie's plan would allow him to prevent the league from forcing Leaf games to be available in Hamilton's area. Who knows how this will play out in the courts but it is not a given that Leaf games will be available west of Toronto. I expect they will be but I also expect Balsillie will insist on a hefty payment from the Leafs for allowing this. Normally the Leafs would insist on their fans continuing to see games on tv (and a big cash payment) as a condition for allowing a new team in our area. But if Balsillie moves the Coyotes to Hamilton via the courts the Leafs may not have the usual leverage. Balsillie hasn't exactly shown much respect for league rules and traditions.

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