SBD/March 22, 2012/Franchises

Franchise Notes

Stars Owner Tom Gaglardi said, “There’s absolutely no reason why the Dallas NHL market can’t be Top 10 again. Being ownerless and rudderless really hurt the franchise, for sure.” Stars President Jim Lites said, “The players are no longer playing for a faceless entity. They’re playing for a real person. That’s incredibly important.” In Dallas, Cheryl Hall noted Gaglardi is “president of Northland Properties,” and he runs the “family-owned company with more than $2.5 billion in assets.” Northland Chair Bob Gaglardi, Tom’s father, said, “If he can bring his enthusiasm and business acumen to that arena, I’m looking forward to that.” Hall asked Tom Gaglardi if owning the Stars is "a business or a rich guy’s toy?” Gaglardi: “I can tell you, we consider it a business. I always laugh at people who make comments like, ‘You’re rich. You can afford to lose money.’ I’ve never met a rich guy who liked to lose money.” Since Gaglardi “lowered ticket prices in December, the Stars’ home-game attendance is up 31 percent to an average of 15,000-plus.” But even with the “surge in attendance, the Stars are expected to lose $30 million this season after losing a combined $91.5 million in the previous three” (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/18).

LOOKING TO THE FUTURE: In Toronto, Frank Zicarelli noted CFL Toronto Argonauts Exec Chair & CEO Chris Rudge “was adamant that Rogers Centre can once again serve as a vibrant football venue.” Rudge admitted that the team “needs to draw an average of 25,000 paid tickets per game this season to break even.” The team last year “had a paid average of 15,000.” Rudge “speaks regularly” with Blue Jays President & CEO Paul Beeston as “the two try to hash out a new lease deal at Rogers Centre.” Zicarelli wrote what is necessary for the Argonauts “is a full-time, state of the art practice facility, an issue Rudge raised but could only say the team recognizes the need for a facility and is working to establish one” (TORONTO SUN, 3/19).
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