Just when you thought things were better for the Coyotes.....ESPN is now reporting that the deal with the City of Glendale and NHL's poster child for ownership, Jerry Reinsdorf, is dead. The city has reached out again to the Ice Edge Holdings group and maybe could get them back on board, even after they outright rejected the IEH proposal.
This episode, we see Jim Balsillie sitting on the couch watching the TV. Gary Bettman comes walking in.
Gary Bettman: (Muttering under his breath) Why are they doing this to me now?? I was going to get over it and be rid of this financial burden....
Jim Balsillie: Anything wrong, Gary?? It seems like (snickering) you've misplaced something.
GB: Oh, guffaw, guffaw-- I get it-- relocation in a non-traditonal market which turns out to be a money-sucking venture.
JB: The joke doesn't work if you have to explain it.
GB: Whatever-- I have my own issues. What does it take to actually get rid of this team?? I thought I had it. He was unsuspecting and willing to take it over for me and get the pressure and heat off of me. It's like he actually did research and realized this deal probably wouldn't do well for him, especially with the lease and having to wait five-years to try to sell the bloody team.
JB: Were you really expecting this whole thing to go down with Reinsdorf?? I mean, from the on-set of this thing, he really hasn't said much about anything in regards to this whole issue. It's like he didn't even know much about-- he just threw his hat into the ring. Or at least, someone did on his behalf. I don't even think he knew there was hockey in Chicago, much less Arizona. I think you could have been the only one to think it would all work out.
GB: He's got the MLB team, the NBA team-- why not go lower in the ranking and hit up a NHL team. It's affordable and it's something that'll help out his taxes and what not. Plus, he didn't have to do much-- just keep the people around that helped them to a playoff berth and move on. Not much to do, just pay some bills.
JB: But Gary, have you seen the bills?? They are piling up at a massive rate and really are never-ending. The Coyotes are like the Greece of the NHL. (Editor's Note: This gag was topical in early May 2010 when the Greek economy went to crap. Look it up if you don't get it.)
GB: Yes, but with a little help, they could have been revived in less time. Sure, the bills are piling up, sure the city is footing the bill for most the stuff, sure the taxes are getting crazed, sure the team can't turn a profit....wait, where was I going with this??
JB: You weren't. The fact is that you can't keep a team in an area where the responsiveness of the "fans" is depended upon the threat of losing the team. It seems that the only time people come out for the team is when they think they're going to lose them. Even when they were winning, it took them a while to get to the rink.
GB: Maybe so, but they made the playoffs, they had a great season, they have a lot of award finalist, they have a great looking future...
JB: That could be blown up this summer. They have seven UFAs and five RFAs who had an everyday role on the team. With the insecure nature of the team-- are you willing to spend the money in order to get the re-signed, especially since you control the team?? Don't you think the other owners would be a bit upset about it if you did?? Plus, with all the other FAs out there, wouldn't you want this team to build off their success and add more to their team??
GB: You mean....I'd have to take care of all of that?? Not that I'm stressed enough or anything, now I have to deal with that. All because this guy couldn't take over the team?? All because the City of Glendale wouldn't go with the best idea in the Ice Edge Holdings in the first place??
JB: And all because you didn't want to tease the idea of selling it to me on threat of me moving the team. Let's face it-- your ego can't take a hit of relocating a previously relocated team. You don't want to be proven wrong for decisions that weren't that keen to begin with. Sure, we all can regret some things, but most of us have the ability to actually move forward after admitted some wrong doing. You take your lumps and bounce back.
GB: That's just it though. I can take the lumps-- look at the work stoppage. The fact is that even if I do sell and move this team, who's to say the place it will moved to will be any more viable than another. The harsh reality of it is that if we have to sell it, that has to be approved by everyone. If they want to move, it again has to be approved. Who's to say that where the new owner would want to move the team would work out monetarily for the league and the other owners?? The thought of moving a team in trouble is great in theory. It's when it's put into actual motion and trying to get everyone on board that is the issue. It's nothing personal-- always business.
JB: I'll get it. James and Gar-- your helpful hardware, folks.
JB: (To Gary) Would you shut up?? (Phone) Yes?? Oh really?? So, you do want back into the mix Mr. Reinsdorf?? You made a horrible mistake?? Sure, I'll put him on. (To Gary) It's for you-- it looks like you got your wish.
GB: (Jumping up and down) FINALLY!! FINALLY SOMETHING GOOD!! JERRY?? JERRY??
Judge Redfield T. Baum: (Over the phone) T-BOMBED!!!!!!!!
GB: OWWWWWW (Grabbing his ear and falling over) My ear, my ear.....I....I think it's bleeding.
JB: Much like the Coyotes bleeding money from Glendale...