SBD/Issue 221/Franchises

Moyes Allowed To Question Reinsdorf On Possible Collusion

Questions Raised About
Beasley's Tie To Coyotes Deal
U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Redfield Baum yesterday allowed Coyotes Owner Jerry Moyes to "have his lawyer question" Bulls and White Sox Chair Jerry Reinsdorf and Arizona attorney John Kaites about "possible collusion with Glendale officials or the NHL" in their bid to acquire the Coyotes, according to David Shoalts of the GLOBE & MAIL. While Moyes has "long questioned how Glendale officials treated him compared to Reinsdorf, the issue was given a fresh push" following a report published Monday that "raised questions about the relationships" between Glendale City Manager Ed Beasley, Reinsdorf, Kaites, Reinsdorf's son Michael and two companies hired by Beasley to survey the Coyotes situation (GLOBE & MAIL, 8/5). In Phoenix, Sarah Fenske wrote Beasley is "trying his best to hand over the Coyotes to his friend" Kaites. Beasley in October hired Massachusetts-based Beacon Sports Capital Management to "assess the Coyotes' finances," and while the company was in Glendale, it met with Kaites and Reinsdorf. Fenske notes Kaites and Reinsdorf "weren't being talked about by anyone as prospective buyers at that point." In addition, Beasley's calendar reveals he held "repeated meetings with both Kaites and Reinsdorf over the past year." Kaites and Beasley had "no fewer than four scheduled meetings or conference calls in August and September 2008, which is right about the time the Coyotes' ownership began asking City Hall for help." Also, Glendale last year hired Michael Reinsdorf's Chicago-based Int'l Facilities Group (IFG) to "assess stadium operations" at Arena, and city officials confirmed that IFG "suggested Glendale hire Beacon" (PHOENIX NEW TIMES, 8/3).

BAD MOON RISING: In Phoenix, Dan Bickley writes these details of Beasley's "back-room negotiations with Jerry Reinsdorf have damaged his credibility," and now there is the "appearance of a skewed playing field and something that smells of cronyism." Bickley: "Now, the lights are on and everyone's paying attention. It will be nearly impossible to shape a deal that makes the Coyotes appealing to investors and taxpayers alike" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 8/5). In Montreal, Pat Hickey writes while Glendale has been "silent on what concessions it's willing to make" to a new owner, it is "becoming more obvious with each passing day that no matter who wins control of the Phoenix Coyotes, the taxpayers of Glendale, Ariz., will be the big losers" (Montreal GAZETTE, 8/5). The GLOBE & MAIL's Stephen Brunt writes the NHL is an "exceptionally profitable business in its core markets, supported by extremely loyal fans, but it will never be viable in Glendale." NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman "knows it, as do the governors who employ him." Brunt: "They've see the books. They understand that the Coyotes have never made money in Arizona, and never will" (GLOBE & MAIL, 8/5).

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