: News Article:
Balsillie back in the bidding
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08-07-2009, 11:00 AM
Join Date: May 2003
Originally Posted by
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.
I don't really think logical to make the assumption that we wouldn't get Leaf games west of Toronto. Especially given the number of fans the team has in the market. Blocking Leaf games in Kingston is one thing. Blocking Leaf games in Hamilton or Burlington is another. I can't see that flying. I think this is fearmongering more than anything else, and unlikely to really change the status quo. It's very doubtful that Southern Ontario will cease broadcasting Leaf games.
Remember, they're competing in the same market.
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