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Discussion Starter #1
By John Buccigross
Special to ESPN.com
Oct. 12, 2006, 4:44 PM ET

We're going back to Pittsburgh? Nah, I don't think so

The Pittsburgh Penguins are history. Gone. You can kiss them goodbye. And there is nooooooooooo doubt about it.

New owner-in-waiting Jim Balsillie has given Mario Lemieux a giant hockey bag of cash that will allow Mario to join seven more country clubs and buy 18,378 more bottles of wine. Balsillie will also take away Mario's legacy as a player when he moves the team to Hamilton or Toronto or Las Vegas or Yellow Grass, Saskatchewan. Mario will not have an NHL sweater anymore. Scratch my back with a hacksaw and buy my dog one, too.

Great Balsillie of fire.

Balsillie will move the Penguins. Pittsburgh is the 22nd-largest TV market in the United States and that number will likely move in the wrong direction in this century. Bigger market sizes (TV homes) that don't have NHL teams: Orlando (20th), Sacramento (19th), Cleveland (16th), Seattle (13th), Houston (10th) and Chicago (third). (For the record, Hartford is 28th. It's the largest TV market without a pro sports team and a larger market than Raleigh, N.C., Nashville, Tenn., Kansas City, Columbus, Ohio, and Buffalo, N.Y. A man can dream, can't he?)

The Penguins will not be going to Las Vegas, which is the 48th market and has slightly more TV homes than Buffalo (49th). Sure, some sleazy high roller might go to a few games in Lost Wages, but while Sidney Crosby has a nine-point night, he will be playing video poker on the back of the seat in front of him, leave in the second period to get some free prime rib and will pass on a Peter Lee bobblehead doll at the souvenir stand. Plus, you could build nine brand-new hockey arenas with the money lost at blackjack tables by players over the past 15 years. This is the last place the NHL needs to be.

The Penguins will not be going to Kansas City (31st). The Penguins will end up in Canada. And why not? What the NFL is to the United States, the NHL is to Canada. Passion has never been higher and the Penguins have a ready-made Canadian icon in Crosby. You can't imagine the immediate impact this would have in Canada. The cash to be made by Balsillie is mind-boggling. There is a huge economic windfall to be made in Ontario. The Ontario Ministry of Finance (were they in an Austin Powers movie?!) reported last April that the province's population is projected to grow by 30.7 percent, or 3.9 million, from an estimated 12.54 million to 16.40 million by July 1, 2031. The population reaches 14.54 million under the low-growth scenario and 17.85 million under the high-growth scenario by 2031.

Supporting another hockey team in Ontario, especially near Toronto, will not be a problem. It poses the same question I had about Minnesota a few years back when that city didn't have a team: "What took so long?" When the North Stars moved to Dallas, I would have done everything possible to get my franchise to Minnesota if it was based in the States before it was awarded the Wild.

And Balsillie has the pockets to float the ship until it takes full sail. In 1999, Research In Motion, a small pager manufacturer, introduced the BlackBerry. It quickly became one of the most successful high-tech companies of all time, slightly edging out Atari and Gottlieb, who made the video game Q*bert in 1982. Ol' Jimbo became one of the richest men in Canada. Balsillie and his co-chief executive, Mike Lazaridis, were collectively paid $95 million this year. Balsillie is now worth an estimated $1 billion thanks to the success of the BlackBerry. The man has a lot of Balsillies.

Balsillie is also a well-known philanthropist ("I give to you … a hockey team!) in the Kitchener-Waterloo area in Ontario, where Research In Motion is based and where he lives with his Canadian wife and two Canadian children. This guy is more Canadian than the late John Candy drinking Blue backstage at a Hip concert. He ain't moving to Upper St. Clair, Sewickley, or Indiana, Pa.

But we won't hear him say that. He will say all the right things until the moving vans are heading north on I-79.

FULL STORY
 

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Nhl And Pittsburgh

panoo2004 said:
By John Buccigross
Special to ESPN.com
Oct. 12, 2006, 4:44 PM ET

We're going back to Pittsburgh? Nah, I don't think so

The Pittsburgh Penguins are history. Gone. You can kiss them goodbye. And there is nooooooooooo doubt about it.

New owner-in-waiting Jim Balsillie has given Mario Lemieux a giant hockey bag of cash that will allow Mario to join seven more country clubs and buy 18,378 more bottles of wine. Balsillie will also take away Mario's legacy as a player when he moves the team to Hamilton or Toronto or Las Vegas or Yellow Grass, Saskatchewan. Mario will not have an NHL sweater anymore. Scratch my back with a hacksaw and buy my dog one, too.

Great Balsillie of fire.

Balsillie will move the Penguins. Pittsburgh is the 22nd-largest TV market in the United States and that number will likely move in the wrong direction in this century. Bigger market sizes (TV homes) that don't have NHL teams: Orlando (20th), Sacramento (19th), Cleveland (16th), Seattle (13th), Houston (10th) and Chicago (third). (For the record, Hartford is 28th. It's the largest TV market without a pro sports team and a larger market than Raleigh, N.C., Nashville, Tenn., Kansas City, Columbus, Ohio, and Buffalo, N.Y. A man can dream, can't he?)

The Penguins will not be going to Las Vegas, which is the 48th market and has slightly more TV homes than Buffalo (49th). Sure, some sleazy high roller might go to a few games in Lost Wages, but while Sidney Crosby has a nine-point night, he will be playing video poker on the back of the seat in front of him, leave in the second period to get some free prime rib and will pass on a Peter Lee bobblehead doll at the souvenir stand. Plus, you could build nine brand-new hockey arenas with the money lost at blackjack tables by players over the past 15 years. This is the last place the NHL needs to be.

The Penguins will not be going to Kansas City (31st). The Penguins will end up in Canada. And why not? What the NFL is to the United States, the NHL is to Canada. Passion has never been higher and the Penguins have a ready-made Canadian icon in Crosby. You can't imagine the immediate impact this would have in Canada. The cash to be made by Balsillie is mind-boggling. There is a huge economic windfall to be made in Ontario. The Ontario Ministry of Finance (were they in an Austin Powers movie?!) reported last April that the province's population is projected to grow by 30.7 percent, or 3.9 million, from an estimated 12.54 million to 16.40 million by July 1, 2031. The population reaches 14.54 million under the low-growth scenario and 17.85 million under the high-growth scenario by 2031.

Supporting another hockey team in Ontario, especially near Toronto, will not be a problem. It poses the same question I had about Minnesota a few years back when that city didn't have a team: "What took so long?" When the North Stars moved to Dallas, I would have done everything possible to get my franchise to Minnesota if it was based in the States before it was awarded the Wild.

And Balsillie has the pockets to float the ship until it takes full sail. In 1999, Research In Motion, a small pager manufacturer, introduced the BlackBerry. It quickly became one of the most successful high-tech companies of all time, slightly edging out Atari and Gottlieb, who made the video game Q*bert in 1982. Ol' Jimbo became one of the richest men in Canada. Balsillie and his co-chief executive, Mike Lazaridis, were collectively paid $95 million this year. Balsillie is now worth an estimated $1 billion thanks to the success of the BlackBerry. The man has a lot of Balsillies.

Balsillie is also a well-known philanthropist ("I give to you … a hockey team!) in the Kitchener-Waterloo area in Ontario, where Research In Motion is based and where he lives with his Canadian wife and two Canadian children. This guy is more Canadian than the late John Candy drinking Blue backstage at a Hip concert. He ain't moving to Upper St. Clair, Sewickley, or Indiana, Pa.

But we won't hear him say that. He will say all the right things until the moving vans are heading north on I-79.

FULL STORY
The NHL will not let pittsburgh leave. i am sure that this was part of the sale of the team to keep them in pittsburgh. so they are not moving anywhere.
 

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Thanks panoo for this. I have been looking for some info to back up your statement in a different thread about the team leavin pittsburgh. So i have a few questions for you that i hope you can answer. Where are they plannin on moving the team or where is balisse leading towards?
Has balisse said anything on the particular topic about moving the team to canada?
Has balisses already offered mario a gigantic offer or is he still waiting to?
Any words on moving the team to winnipeg?
when will the team leave pittburgh if it does?

thanks hope you can answer these cuz im to lazy to look it up right now.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Canuck said:
Thanks panoo for this. I have been looking for some info to back up your statement in a different thread about the team leaving Pittsburgh. So i have a few questions for you that i hope you can answer. Where are they plannin on moving the team or where is balisse leading towards?
Has balisse said anything on the particular topic about moving the team to canada?
Has balisses already offered mario a gigantic offer or is he still waiting to?
Any words on moving the team to winnipeg?
when will the team leave pittburgh if it does?

thanks hope you can answer these cuz im to lazy to look it up right now.
Well, I would need a bit of time to check all that out for you!!

But I do know that he has hopes of moving the team to Canada, around the Kitchener/Waterloo area, this I've heard over and over again, from different sources.

But you know what, the great BETTMAN will probably put a halt to everything other than the team staying in Pittsburgh, heaven forbid, if Bettman would allow another team in Canada!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Here's a bit more for you to read Canuck.

Rumours have swirled about Balsillie perhaps moving the team Hamilton, which is close to his home and RIM's head office in Waterloo, Ont., but he indicated Thursday that he plans to keep the team in Pittsburgh.

"Pittsburgh has shown itself to be an outstanding hockey market, and the team has an incredible tradition of success and fan support," he said in a statement. "With young stars such as Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, we all know the Penguins have a very bright future on the ice. I look forward to owning this team for a long time in Pittsburgh."

The NHL does not want the Penguins to move.

"We are committed to keeping the Penguins in Pittsburgh, provided the team has a new building," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told The Canadian Press on Thursday. "Mr. Balsillie has assured the commissioner that he shares this commitment."

Negotiations for an arena to replace the 45-year-old Mellon Arena have been held up because Lemieux's group has a deal with the Isle of Capri casino chain to build the arena at no cost to the team or city. That deal is contingent on Isle of Capri being granted the licence for a new downtown Pittsburgh slot machine parlour.

The licence is not expected to be awarded until at least the end of December.

City and Allegheny County officials have urged the team to agree to a Plan B deal to build the arena if Isle of Capri does not get the casino. Land for the project has been acquired across the street from Mellon Arena.

However, Lemieux's group has declined to accept the alternative plan, saying it is bound to the Isle of Capri deal.

Mr. Balsillie had repeatedly declined to comment on his potential involvement as a bidder for the team, even after his name surfaced in news reports last month as the leading contender among four bidders.

Certainly, the fact that he eventually elbowed his rivals aside shouldn't surprise anyone — least of all those who know him. Mr. Balsillie has always been extremely competitive, and his aggressive reputation stretches from the board room to the beer hockey leagues of Waterloo.

Hockey, though, is his biggest love, and he has gone so far as to name some of the board rooms at RIM's corporate headquarters after NHL greats like Gordie Howe.

"He's very competitive, always has been," his mother, Laurel, acknowledged in an interview.

Now that he has appears to have won the prize, the question on many minds is how the ultracompetitive Mr. Balsillie will handle losing — especially in something as dear to him as hockey. This is a team, after all, that finished second-worst in the NHL last year, despite the stellar talents of Mr. Crosby.
 

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From everything I've read, it all goes back to this, so until this is resolved, we really won't know anything!!

Negotiations for an arena to replace the 45-year-old Mellon Arena have been held up because Lemieux's group has a deal with the Isle of Capri casino chain to build the arena at no cost to the team or city. That deal is contingent on Isle of Capri being granted the licence for a new downtown Pittsburgh slot machine parlour.

The licence is not expected to be awarded until at least the end of December.
 

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panoo2004 said:
Well, I would need a bit of time to check all that out for you!!

But I do know that he has hopes of moving the team to Canada, around the Kitchener/Waterloo area, this I've heard over and over again, from different sources.

But you know what, the great BETTMAN will probably put a halt to everything other than the team staying in Pittsburgh, heaven forbid, if Bettman would allow another team in Canada!!!
I am getting sick and tired of hearing that pittsburgh will move. leave the penguins in pittsburgh and move Carolina.Nashville, Columbus, Tampa. Florida, Pheonix.the NHL has no business in these markets. And you can bet that the NHL will not allow pittsburgh to move.
 

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OLYMPIA STADIUM said:
I am getting sick and tired of hearing that pittsburgh will move. leave the penguins in pittsburgh and move Carolina.Nashville, Columbus, Tampa. Florida, Pheonix.the NHL has no business in these markets. And you can bet that the NHL will not allow pittsburgh to move.
Your probably right, I have no control over it, I just post the news.

I just want to know, how many times does the NHL have to bail this team out? Winnipeg and Quebec were never given a chance to fight for anything, the first sign of trouble, and they had no trouble moving them, and this is what, the 3rd or 4th time now, for Pittsburgh?

And I know the city of Winnipeg wouldn't build them an arena, but the NHL didn't give the team a chance to find an owner that would!!!
 

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panoo2004 said:
Your probably right, I have no control over it, I just post the news.

I just want to know, how many times does the NHL have to bail this team out? Winnipeg and Quebec were never given a chance to fight for anything, the first sign of trouble, and they had no trouble moving them, and this is what, the 3rd or 4th time now, for Pittsburgh?

And I know the city of Winnipeg wouldn't build them an arena, but the NHL didn't give the team a chance to find an owner that would!!!
I am all for winnipeg, quebec and even hartford getting there teams back. but move some of these teams that the league has no business in.
 

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Being from Pittsburgh Im definatley biased in this debate. And it does come down to if the Penguins can build a new areana the Pens will be staying in Pittsburgh(which is where they belong). If the slots license goes to Isle of Capri they will build a brand new $290 million stadium and give it to the city. But there is some back door conspiracy going on in the government and it looks like Harris will win. In that case the city has stated that they have a Plan B which will use more city funds to build the new arena. Either way the Pens will stay in the Burgh. Other good news was that the $50,000 that Basille had on land in Canada to build the new arena was removed.

I agree that some of those cities mentioned above deserve teams but not at the expense of Pittsburgh. We had the highest increase in attendence and even thought the Pens got off to that horrible start we still sold out that arena till the end of the year. There is a very good and supportive fan base here.
 

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OLYMPIA STADIUM said:
I am all for winnipeg, quebec and even hartford getting there teams back. but move some of these teams that the league has no business in.
I couldent agree with you more. They have got to get rid of teams like nashville, carolina, florida, and i think they only need one new york team, so keep the rangers and get rid of those pathetic islanders.
 

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Canuck said:
I couldent agree with you more. They have got to get rid of teams like nashville, carolina, florida, and i think they only need one new york team, so keep the rangers and get rid of those pathetic islanders.
I have nothing against new york having the rangers and islanders.
 

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PensRule said:
I agree that some of those cities mentioned above deserve teams but not at the expense of Pittsburgh. We had the highest increase in attendence and even thought the Pens got off to that horrible start we still sold out that arena till the end of the year. There is a very good and supportive fan base here.
I totally agree. (Welcome to the forum by the way, PensRule)

I'd also want Winnipeg, Hartford, and maybe even Quebec City to get an NHL team again soon, but definitely not at the expense of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

There's too much tradition and history surrounding it, and I still believe they have a very large and loyal fanbase.

True, they were having some problems recently with all the talk about their team's situation being unstable for the last few years. They used to be well orientated with not only the NHL, but the game of Hockey in general.

I know that if the team remains in Pittsburgh and they end up with a new arena, attendance and fan support will not be a problem for them, especially with the up-and-coming talent they have to entertain Hockey fans for years to come.
 
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