Just when we expected to be go into the hockey news doldrums, the New York Post reports that none other than Wayne Gretzky is part of an ownership group that is trying to land an NHL team in Seattle.
Wayne Gretzky has joined a group of investors hoping to bring a National Hockey League team to Seattle, The Post has learned.
The Gretzky group is one of three looking to bring an NHL franchise to the home of Starbucks, sources said — but each faces an uphill battle in that league Commissioner Gary Bettman has not said the league is ready to expand
This would obviously be great news to have someone has high profile as Gretzky to help build a franchise here. But…
Gretzky’s Agent denies his involvement in a “bid”
Just 4 hours later, Sportsnet reported that Gretzky’s agent is saying this isn’t the case:
Darren Blake, Gretzky’s agent, told The Canadian Press in an email that the 53-year-old Hall of Famer isn’t involved in any bid.
“As you can imagine prospective team owners from various franchises call frequently to gauge his interest in coming on board. Seattle is no different,” said Blake.
Sportsnet is using the word “bid” which might be used carefully by Darren Blake. Both articles point out that one of the big hurdles is the arena, and until that is figured out, there really won’t be a bid. As I’ve previously shared, the NHL will need to be confident that a deal can be struck with Hansen and the City of Seattle before there will be a formal bid.
Which ownership group
If Gretzky is part of one of the groups, it is not clear which one. There should be no doubt that Gretzky can not be the lead investor on bringing the team. There has been no indication which group he could be part of should this move forward.
I have updated the NHL to Seattle diagram: