Three Seattle reporters brought us news today about which potential NHL ownership groups intend to apply for expansion in time for the upcoming Monday deadline. Two locations are apparently out. One is in.
Victor Coleman in SoDo
KING5 reporter Chris Daniels reported that Coleman has been unable to reach an accord with Chris Hansen, and will be unable to submit an application by Monday as a result. Though the two parties continue to negotiate for an NHL-first arrangement and Coleman still intends to apply after the NHL deadline expires, it's unclear how receptive the league will be to a tardy submission.
Jac Sperling in Bellevue
Seattle Times reporter Geoff Daniels reported that Sperling, who has been working behind the scenes to get an expansion bid done on the east side, has abandoned the effort for now after finance talks broke down this week.
The Times has learned via a public-records request and interviews that talks on a Bellevue arena deal and bringing an expansion team there fell apart late last week. Meetings in Bellevue between top city planning officials, a company controlling the potential arena site and a longtime NHL "power broker" had centered around a possible Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) being reached ahead of the league's application deadline.
Ray Bartoszek in Tukwila
And everyone's favorite Eeyore, Art Thiel, reported that Bartoszek's group does intend to apply by the deadline.
But another source told Sportspress Northwest that a rival plan for an arena in Tukwila will be submitted.
Ray Bartoszek, the Connecticut investment banker behind the Tukwila project, has no problem with government money, since his project is all privately funded. There's been no indication yet whether he has individual partners or a development deal with a large company such as Anschutz Entertainment Group.
So, for the time being, our hopes lie in Tukwila with Mr. Bartoszek, who is the only hockey investor so far to step forward with a plan, and who is making his second earnest attempt to being the NHL to the Seattle region.
So how do you feel about Tukwila? Take the poll at the Seattle Times and let them know.