SBJ/September 29 - October 5, 2003/Special Report

2003 National Hockey League franchise directory

The following presents an overview of each NHL franchise at the start of the 2003 season. Information on each team's owner pertains to majority ownership stakes.

Anaheim Mighty Ducks

Owner: The Walt Disney Co. paid a $50 million expansion fee in 1992.
Arena/capacity (year built): Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim/17,174 (1993)
Arena Owner: City of Anaheim
Ad agencies: The Ballpark Advertising Agency, Field Day Inc.
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: PricewaterhouseCoopers
Market research company: Matters of Fact


Atlanta Thrashers

Owner: Turner Broadcasting System Inc. signed a binding agreement earlier this month for the transfer of ownership of the Thrashers, Atlanta Hawks and operating rights to the teams' Philips Arena to Atlanta Spirit LLC. The deal, for 85 percent ownership, is valued at $250 million.
Arena/capacity (year built): Philips Arena/18,545 (1999)
Arena owner: Atlanta-Fulton County Recreation Authority
Ad agency: Blue Sky
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: In-house
Market research company: None


Boston Bruins

Owner: Jeremy M. Jacobs bought the team and Boston Garden, the team's former home, from Storer Broadcasting for $10 million in 1975.
Arena/capacity (year built): FleetCenter/17,565 (1995)
Arena owner: NBG Corp., a subsidiary of Delaware North Cos.
Ad agency: None
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: PricewaterhouseCoopers
Market research company: None


Buffalo Sabres

Owner: Thomas Golisano paid an estimated $80 million in April 2003 for the Sabres and operating rights to HSBC Arena. Golisano assumed control from the NHL, which had controlled the club after Adelphia Communications filed for bankruptcy protection in 2002 and John Rigas, founder and former chairman and CEO of Adelphia, was arrested on charges of fraud and criminal self-dealing. The Rigas family held 100 percent ownership of the team.
Arena/capacity (year built): HSBC Arena/18,690 (1996)
Arena owner: Western New York Arena LLC
Ad agency: None
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: None
Market research company: None


Calgary Flames

Owner: A group of investors bought the Atlanta Flames for $16 million in 1980 and moved the team to Calgary.
Arena/capacity (year built): Pengrowth Saddledome/17,158 (1983)
Arena owner: Calgary Flames Partnership
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: KPMG
Market research company: University of Calgary market research group


Carolina Hurricanes

Owner: Peter Karmanos Jr., Thomas Thewes and Jim Rutherford bought the Hartford (Conn.) Whalers from Richard Gordon and a group of corporations for $47.5 million in 1994. They moved the team to North Carolina in 1997.
Arena/capacity (year built): RBC Center/18,730 (1999)
Arena owner: Centennial Authority
Ad agency: None
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Deloitte & Touche
Market research company: None


Chicago Blackhawks

Owner: James Norris, James D. Norris and Arthur M. Wirtz bought controlling interest in the team from Bill Tobin in 1952. The team now is solely owned by the Wirtz family.
Arena/capacity (year built): United Center/20,500 (1994)
Arena owner: United Center J.V.
Ad agency: Coudal Partners Inc.
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: DND


Colorado Avalanche

Owner: Stan Kroenke bought the team, the Denver Nuggets and the Pepsi Center from Liberty Media for $450 million in 2000.
Arena/capacity (year built): Pepsi Center/18,007 (1999)
Arena owner: Kroenke Sports Enterprises
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: In-house


Columbus Blue Jackets

Owner: John H. McConnell, Wolfe Enterprises Inc. and Ron Pizzuti paid an $80 million expansion fee in 1997.
Arena/capacity (year built): Nationwide Arena/18,136 (2000)
Arena owner: Nationwide Realty Investors
Ad agency: Holcomb, Gallagher and Adams
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: KPMG
Market research company: Media Solutions


Dallas Stars

Owner: Thomas O. Hicks bought the team from Norman Green for $84 million in 1995.
Arena/capacity (year built): American Airlines Center/18,532 (2001)
Arena owner: City of Dallas
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: KPMG
Market research company: In-house


Detroit Red Wings

Owner: Michael and Marian Ilitch bought the team from the Norris family for $8 million in 1982.
Arena/capacity (year built): Joe Louis Arena/20,056 (1979)
Arena owner: City of Detroit
Ad agency: Watercooler Advertising
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: In-house


Edmonton Oilers

Owner: Edmonton Investor Group Ltd., a group headed by Cal Nichols, bought the team from Peter Pocklington for $70 million in 1998. The Alberta Treasury Branches had assumed management of Pocklington's assets in November 1997 and oversaw the selling of the team in order to recover an $84 million loan.
Arena/capacity (year built): Skyreach Centre/16,839 (1974)
Arena owner: City of Edmonton
Ad agency: RED Communications
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Pennock Acheson Nielsen Devaney
Market research company: Criterion Research


Florida Panthers

Owner: A group headed by Florida-based Andrx Co. founder Alan Cohen paid $104.7 million in June 2001 to purchase the team from publicly held Boca Resorts Inc.
Arena/capacity (year built): Office Depot Center/19,250 (1998)
Arena owner: Broward County
Ad agency: Zimmerman & Partners
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Deloitte & Touche
Market research company: Sport Management Research Institute


Los Angeles Kings

Owner: Philip Anschutz and Edward P. Roski Jr. bought the team from Jeffrey Sudikoff and Joseph Cohen for $113.3 million in 1995.
Arena/capacity (year built): Staples Center/18,118 (1999)
Arena owners: Anschutz Entertainment Group, Roski and Fox Entertainment Group
Ad agency: AEG Creative
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: KPMG
Market research company: None


Minnesota Wild

Owner: Minnesota Sports & Entertainment, a group headed by Robert Naegele Jr. paid an $80 million expansion fee in 1997.
Arena/capacity (year built): Xcel Energy Center/18,064 (2000)
Arena owner: St. Paul Arena Co.
Ad agency: Olsen Thielen & Co.
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Deloitte & Touche
Market research company: Ipsos-Reid


Montreal Canadiens

Owner: Booth Creek Ski Holdings Chairman George Gillett purchased 80.1 percent of the team and Bell Centre for $183 million in 2001. Molson Cos. retained 19.9 percent of the franchise.
Arena/capacity (year built): Bell Centre/21,273 (1996)
Arena owner: Booth Creek Ski Holdings
Ad agency: Effix Inc.
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: DND


Nashville Predators

Owner: Craig Leipold and Gaylord Entertainment paid an $80 million expansion fee in 1997. Leipold owns 80 percent; Gaylord owns 20 percent.
Arena/capacity (year built): Gaylord Entertainment Center/17,113 (1996)
Arena owner: Sports Authority, Metropolitan Government of Nashville
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Ernst & Young
Market research companies: Prince Market Research, Scarborough Research


New Jersey Devils

Owner: Puck Holdings LLC, an affiliate of YankeeNets, bought the team from John McMullen for $175 million in 2000.
Arena/capacity (year built): Continental Airlines Arena/19,040 (1981)
Arena owner: New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority
Ad agency: DND
Public relations: DND
Auditor: DND
Market research company: DND


New York Islanders

Owner: Charles Wang and Sanjay Kumar bought the team from Howard and Edward Milstein and Steven Gluckstern for $190 million in 2000.
Arena/capacity (year built): Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum/16,234 (1972)
Arena owner: Nassau County
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: In-house


New York Rangers

Owner: The team and the arena are owned by Madison Square Garden LP, which is owned by Rainbow Media Holdings, which in turn is 40 percent owned by Fox Entertainment Group and 60 percent owned by Cablevision Systems Corp.
Arena/capacity (year built): Madison Square Garden/18,200 (1968)
Arena owner: Madison Square Garden LP
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: DND


Ottawa Senators

Owner: Capital Sports & Entertainment Inc. and Capital Sports Properties Inc., both owned by Eugene Melnyk, completed the purchase of the club and Corel Centre last month. The club had filed for bankruptcy protection in January.
Arena/capacity (year built): Corel Centre/18,500 (1996)
Arena owner: Palladium Corp.
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: Decima Research


Philadelphia Flyers

Owner: The team was part of a $250 million joint venture created in 1996 by Comcast and Spectacor. Comcast owns 66 percent of the team, Spectacor owns 32 percent and Pat Croce owns 2 percent.
Arena/capacity (year built): Wachovia Center/19,523 (1996)
Arena owner: Comcast-Spectacor
Ad agency: None
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Deloitte & Touche
Market research company: In-house


Phoenix Coyotes

Owner: Steve Ellman bought the team from Richard Burke for $125 million in 2000. The ownership group includes NHL legend Wayne Gretzky.
Arenas/capacities (year built): America West Arena/16,210 (1992); Glendale Arena/17,795 (2003)*
Arena owners: City of Phoenix/City of Glendale*
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house*
Auditor: PricewaterhouseCoopers
Market research company: In-house


Pittsburgh Penguins

Owner: A group of investors headed by Mario Lemieux bought the team for $107 million in September 1999 after the franchise, previously owned by Howard Baldwin and Roger Marino, had filed for bankruptcy protection.
Arena/capacity (year built): Mellon Arena/16,958 (1961)
Arena owners: City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County
Ad agency: Giant Ideas
Public relations: Ketchum
Auditor: Deloitte & Touche
Market research company: None


San Jose Sharks

Owner: A group of investors led by Greg Jamison and composed of Silicon Valley technology executives and team management bought control of the team in May 2002 from George and Gordon Gund for $80 million in cash and the assumption of between $40 million and $45 million in debt. George Gund remains part of the investment group.
Arena/capacity (year built): HP Pavilion at San Jose/17,496 (1993)
Arena owner: City of San Jose
Ad agency: Kilburg & Associates
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: KPMG
Market research company: Scarborough Research


St. Louis Blues

Owner: Bill and Nancy Laurie bought the team and arena from Clark Enterprises for $100 million in 1999.
Arena/capacity (year built): Savvis Center/19,022 (1994)
Arena owner: Paige Sports Entertainment
Ad agency: Schupp Co.
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: PricewaterhouseCoopers
Market research company: Scarborough Research


Tampa Bay Lightning

Owner: William Davidson and Palace Sports and Entertainment bought the team and the lease for the team's home arena and six acres of land from Arthur Williams for $115 million in 1999.
Arena/capacity (year built): St. Pete Times Forum/19,758 (1996)
Arena owner: Tampa Sports Authority
Ad agency: FKQ
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: PricewaterhouseCoopers
Market research company: None


Toronto Maple Leafs

Owner: The Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan in February assumed majority ownership (58 percent) of Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment from Steve Stavro. Larry M. Tanenbaum, Toronto Dominion Bank, Bell Globemedia own shares of the remaining 42 percent.
Arena/capacity (year built): Air Canada Centre/18,819 (1999)
Arena owner: Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd.
Ad agency: None
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: DND
Market research company: DND


Vancouver Canucks

Owner: John McCaw bought controlling interest in Orca Bay Sports and Entertainment, which owned 87 percent of the team, from Arthur Griffiths for $80.2 million in 1995. McCaw bought out Griffiths' remaining interest in 1996.
Arena/capacity (year built): General Motors Place/18,630 (1995)
Arena owner: Team owner
Ad agency: In-house
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: KPMG
Market research company: In-house


Washington Capitals

Owner: A group headed by Ted Leonsis bought the team from Washington Sports & Entertainment LP for $85 million in 1999.
Arena/capacity (year built): MCI Center/18,678 (1997)
Arena owner: Washington Sports & Entertainment
Ad agency: Bomstein Agency
Public relations: In-house
Auditor: Ernst & Young
Market research company: In-house

 

Note: All monetary figures are in U.S. dollars.
* The Coyotes will play at America West Arena until Dec. 15. The team will then move to the new Glendale Arena. The owner of the new arena is the City of Glendale. Olson Communications Inc. handles public relations work related to the new facility.
DND: Did not disclose
Research by Alisha Puckett
Sources: League, teams

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