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AUBUT MEETS WITH GOVERNMENT TO DISCUSS NORDIQUE OPTIONS
Published March 28, 1995
Nordiques President and part-owner Marcel Aubut met with Quebec Deputy Premier Bernard Landry to discuss provincial help to keep the team in Quebec. After the meeting, Aubut said Landry is leaning toward a "lottery scheme" to help fund a new arena, rather than the creation of a casino, a plan which had been previously considered. Aubut was optimistic that the government was serious in its promise to help the team: "We've been received favorably, but time is pressing and the agenda is tight. ... what he (Landry) is saying is he's willing to do whatever must be done so that the Nordiques remain in Quebec." Aubut set an April deadline for the government to decide whether it will build a new arena for the team. Despite the Nordiques having the NHL's best record, the team is projected to lose $10M this year and $12M next season. The team has also rejected the government's idea of a long-term, low-interest loan to the team to stabilize financial losses (Norman Delisle, CANADIAN PRESS/OTTAWA CITIZEN, 3/28). DENVER, PHOENIX, ATLANTA? At least three cities are interested in buying and relocating the club if it goes on the market. In Detroit, Cynthia Lambert writes that the Nordiques move to Phoenix or Denver "is looking more and more likely," as the team is an "attractive property" with a young roster and low payroll. The team also reportedly has a $75M offer from a group in Denver (DETROIT NEWS, 3/26). CANCELLATION: Dana Warg, who runs the Target Center for Ogden Corp., had to cancel a scheduled meeting with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman on Friday. Reportedly, the two were to discuss the possibility of the Jets moving to Minneapolis and playing in the Target Center (Sid Hartman, Minneapolis STAR- TRIBUNE, 3/25).