The Phoenix Coyotes won’t be coming to Hamilton – Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie’s bid to buy and move the NHL team to Hamilton has been rejected in Arizona court.
In making his decision, Judge Redfield Baum said “this court is unconvinced that it should order that the NHL must decide the relocation application to meet the June 29 deadline.”
“Simply put, the court does not think there is sufficient time for all of these issues to be fairly presented to the court, given that deadline,” Baum said in his 21-page ruling.
“In making that statement, the court recognizes the diligent efforts and hard work by all parties and their attorneys, including all attorneys’ professionalism under trying circumstances, in presenting their respective positions to the court regarding the motion. Thus the motion is denied, without prejudice.”
The NHL claimed it remained committed to trying to keep the Coyotes in suburban Glendale, Ariz. It wants to have a new owner for the team by September. The league has said it will fund the team for the coming season, if necessary.
What’s next? It seems Canadian hockey fans still want to send a message to the NHL – makeitseven.ca continues to gain support, and a rally to bring the NHL to Hamilton is planned for Friday, June 19, 2009 from 12:00 noon to 1:30 pm outside Copps Coliseum in downtown Hamilton.