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Bankruptcy judge rejects both bids to buy Coyotes

AP | BOB BAUM | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home

PHOENIX — A bankruptcy judge has rejected both bids to buy the Phoenix Coyotes.

Judge Redfield T. Baum turned down the offers of Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie and the NHL in a 31-page ruling on Wednesday.

However, he left the door open for the NHL to buy the team if it amends its offer.

The ruling comes on the eve of the start of the NHL season after nearly five months of often bitter legal wrangling between Balsillie and the league.

Coyotes owner Jerry Moyes took the team into Chapter 11 on May 5 with a plan to sell to Balsillie, contingent on moving the franchise to Hamilton, Ontario, over the NHL's vehement objections.

Balsillie would keep Coyotes in Glendale this year

AP | ANDREW BAGNATO | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home

Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie has pledged to keep the Phoenix Coyotes in Glendale this season if he wins an auction for the financially troubled club.

His attorneys say the club would play in Glendale this season, which opens Oct. 3, but Balsillie still intends to move the team to Hamilton, Ontario, as part of his $242.5 million bid.

The revised offer came during an emergency hearing Wednesday before bankruptcy Judge Redfield T. Baum, who called Balsillie's proposal "a fairly significant change."

The judge called the hearing on owner Jerry Moyes' request to force the NHL into mediation over contentious issues surrounding the club's sale. Baum was expected to rule on the mediation issue later in the day.