SBD/January 3, 2011/Franchises

NHL Franchise Notes: Winter Classic Gives Caps Great Exposure

Leonsis Feels Capitals' Participation In Winter Classic Has Raised Team's Awareness Level

In DC, Dan Steinberg in a front-page piece noted the "hype surrounding" the Capitals' appearance in Saturday's NHL Winter Classic against the Penguins "brought Washington's hockey franchise a level of attention perhaps unprecedented since its only appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals in 1998." For this past weekend, it "was hard to ignore how much progress the franchise has already made." Capitals Owner Ted Leonsis said that the Winter Classic will come to DC "within the next two or three years, and that the franchise could fill a large outdoor arena entirely with its own fans." Leonsis: "To think that 30,000 people would come New Year's Day, a five-hour car ride away, shows how much we've developed a loyal fanbase in our market" (WASHINGTON POST, 1/2).

BUFFALO SOLDIER: In Buffalo, Bucky Gleason reported East Resources President & CEO Terry Pegula is "moving toward a purchase" of the Sabres from Tom Golisano. Pegula's accountants and lawyers are "performing due diligence," though the "time frame for completing the deal" remains unclear. Gleason wrote "nobody should be surprised" if Pegula's formal acquisition comes "with his introduction later this month during All-Star Game festivities in Raleigh." He could "assume control next month" (BUFFALO NEWS, 1/2).

GOOD TIMES HAD BY ALL: Sunrise Sports & Entertainment yesterday announced more complimentary ticket offers for NHL Panthers games as part of the team's "Good Time Guarantee." The new offers include complimentary tickets for fans celebrating their birthday, newly married couples, seniors and active or veteran military, among others. The ticket offers are available to Florida residents only and are subject to blackout dates and other select limitations (SSE).

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