Jim Balsillie, co-CEO of Research In Motion is determined to own an NHL franchise. He has tried twice to get a team, in 1997 with the Nashville Predators and also the Pittsburgh Penguins. Both times were eventually shot down.
Time moves and shortly after the Phoenix Coyotes filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection yesterday, Balsillie announced a $212.5 million conditional offer to relocate the Coyotes to Ontario.
“The current team ownership asked that I table an offer to purchase the Coyotes and significant discussions resulted in an offer that is in the best interests of the franchise, the NHL, and the great hockey fans of Canada and Southern Ontario. I am excited to move closer to bringing an NHL franchise to what I believe is one of the best unserved hockey markets in the world — Southern Ontario. A market with devoted hockey fans, a rich hockey history, a growing and diversified economy and a population of more than seven million people”.