Rob Rossi on with MaddenÃ¢â‚¬Â¦Here are some snippets...
- Lots of people interested in getting back into the bidding for the team. Most names from the past are resurfacing.
- Rossi says if the IoC wins, Mario may very well keep the team.
- On DÃ¢â‚¬â„¢Angelo, Rossi doesn't believe his bud is entirely serious. Seems like someone who likes to get his name in the papers. There are other bidders out there who should be taken more seriously.
- Rossi would not rule out Sam Fingold coming back into the bidding for the team. Or Jim Balsillie for that matter.
- On Cuban, Rossi believes that the longer Cuban says nothing, the greater the chances are that heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s aligning himself with someone to make a bid.
- Madden continues with Cuban, arguing that CubanÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s silence equates with embarrassment. Rossi says we wonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t hear from Cuban until after the license is awarded, and if he was interested in just another publicity stunt, he wouldÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve spoken up by now.
- Back to BalsillieÃ¢â‚¬Â¦why would he back out Friday and then get back in the bidding? Rossi says if IoC doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t win, the price of the team comes down and Balsillie pays less than $175 million for the team.
- THIS IS BIG. Rule out KC as a destination unless Boots DelBiaggio gets back into it. Highly unlikely because Boots told Rossi yesterday that heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not interested in getting back into the hunt for an NHL team.
- If Balsillie takes the team anywhere, heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll take them to a Canadian market.
On the licenseÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
- Rossi speculates that the Board might not have enough votes to award the license either way. Reiterates that this is mere speculation. A delay would be a worse scenario for the Pens because there is a Sports & Exhibition Authority meeting on Thursday and negotiations on Plan B were expected to begin at that meeting. HOWEVER, if this gets delayed, it could be very bad for Forest City.
- Sources he has within the NHL say that the league absolutely do not want this team to leave Pittsburgh and they will exhaust all available options to make sure that doesn't happen. The league is extremely concerned about losing this market.
- If Balsillie gets back into the bidding with a sweet offer, Mario would probably listen.
- Any chance Mario wants to keep the team indefinitely if IoC wins? ThereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a chance because the value of the team would skyrocket. He may seek out new partners in the ownership group.
On the license againÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
This may not be the slamdunk in Forest CityÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s favor. Four things Rossi cites:
1. Apparently, the board is very aware that the FC/HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s plan is not the favorable or popular plan with the residents of this area, and that has been carrying much more weight with the board than people are giving them credit for.
2. The traffic issues associated with FC are a very significant concern for the board and several board members were not happy at all with the way Forest City and HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s kind of half-assed their approach to finding a solution for it, especially at the September hearings. On that noteÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
3. Several board members were put off by the way FC/HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s came off during the entire process. Rossi said that from some of the things heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s hearing, some board members expressed the thought that FC/HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s came off as very high-and-mighty and kind of took the board members to be idiots. FC/HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s kind of approached this whole process in a very cavalier manner, as if the board members would be overwhelmed by the HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s projections and simply win in a landslide.
4. The Majestic Star slots parlor is apparently much more of a threat to FC/HarrahÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s than anyone had admitted to this point. ThereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s some strong speculation that some board members favor this plan over the other two.
Rossi reiterated that a lot of the speculation on who has how many votes is just speculation at this point, and heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s hearing different things practically every 15 minutes. What he told Madden was an overall picture of what heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s gleaned so far.