Look, I know I've had my disagreements before with Mr. Shoalts. I'll be honest, I can't stand the guy. I hate the fact he wears socks with sandals. I hate the fact that he wears stupid looking Hawaiian shirts with said sandals and socks. I hate the fact that he doesn't fact check his stories very well, uses blind sources way to frequently and certainly pushes an agenda with his writing. I guess that's why he's listed as a "columnist" rather than a "reporter" on the Globe and Mail website though. Look, I know I haven't been very nice to the guy. I own up to that fact and shouldn't lower the debate by just calling him names. He just makes me angry. Yesterday he once again showed why.
Appearing on Bob McCown's radio show on Toronto's FAN 590AM (Fast forward to 27:30) Shoalts really outdid himself. Once again talking about the Coyotes sale situation he said:
Shoalts: "I've never seen a story with so many liars. Even the guys who tell the truth don't really tell the whole truth."
Okay, so you're saying all the previous deals were "lies" and not business deals that fell through. Got it. Also that the NHL were lying by saying things were progressing? Okay.
Shoalts: "But it amazes me that this time around so many people, and I mean more than the usual idiot Coyote fans who populate twitter and comment sites and newspapers, all seem to think this is a done deal. You know, despite the fact that so many other deals have fallen apart after announcements have been made and all this, it just boggles the mind."
I'm a lot of things. I'm a jerk at times. I'm defensive. I'm a homer. I own those things. One thing I know, I, along with most Coyote fans are not idiots. We know this isn't a done deal. We've seen the same thing you have of deals falling through. Are we hopeful? Hell yes. This has progressed much further than other deals have in that they actually have a timeline and a plan. But to say this is a done deal would stretch it for us too. I guess this is how sports journalism and journalism in general works now a days so I shouldn't be surprised. Oh well.
McCown: So the Guy's name, the proposed buyer, is Matthew Hulsizer. But here are some of the things that are concerning to me, and I'm assuming to you. Hulsizer will share the equity with... Wait for it... Ice Edge.
Shoalts: [laughing] He better make sure the cheque is certified (I'm assuming he said it in Canadian spelling ;) )
Wait a second... I thought these guys had the backing and savvy to buy Manchester United? Why are they a joke now? Ohhhh. Not fair to bring up again? I guess I should just focus on the fact that it doesn't matter. Ice Edge, it would seem, didn't have the bucks to get the deal they wanted done. They bring in a guy with more bucks. find a way to still be minority owners. How is that somehow less legitimate? If you're buying a part because you couldn't get the whole thing isn't that, I don't know, smart? Seems like that makes more sense not less, but that's just me. Maybe with the Canadian exchange rate that business doesn't make sense? Really at a loss as to why that's a joke.
McCown: And it's alleged that Ice Edge would get 30% equity in the team? Is that what you've heard?
Shoalts: Yes, well, I wrote that too, but I think it got trimmed out of my story for space reasons. [nervous laughter]
So wait, some of the only actual news you "tried" to report got trimmed out of your story so that you could keep 6 paragraphs of stuff that you had already re-hashed 14 times? Either a) you need a new editor or b) you're one of the aforementioned liars you spoke of. You guess which one I think it is.
McCown: So so so, what would the cost of that 30% equity be then David?
Shoalts: Well I was trying to the math in my head the other day and um... and well um, I've been told that Hulsizer would pay 140 million. Why he would pay that much I have no idea since the last real price of a franchise was 100 million that Jeff Vinik paid for the Tampa Bay Lightning, which is certainly a franchise that's in much better shape and has a much busier arena to go with it. Sooo 30 percent of 140 million which would be uh... 30 million plus another 12 so 42 Million. My guess is that the Ice Edge guys had at most 20 million in cash um... So presumably there is someone out there crazy enough to lend them another 22 million.
McCown: And to become a minority partner in this enterprise which would...
Shoalts: Yeah, well now we'll see, I mean they've done a lot of hootin' and hollerin' about what great marketers they can be with a team. I don't know how busy Matt Hulsizer is, if he'll take an active part in this or not, or let these Ice Edge characters [laughing] go to town? I don't know. But the thing that kills me is that this is far from a done deal. I mean uh... Reinsdorf's been this far at least twice with the city so, and Ice edge was there too so uhh... Why people are thinking this is gonna be any different until the thing is signed sealed and delivered is beyond me. And this is without even mentioning the Goldwater Institute.
Alright. That was a big chunk of nonsense. So Ice Edge buying the team was a joke. Ice Edge buying a minority stake is a joke, anyone adding money to said minority is a joke. We get it you think this is a joke and anyone buying the team is crazy. Okay. Buying an asset that is finally winning (though off to a rough start in 4 games) and is improving is crazy. Seems like a decent investment if things can be turned around. We also get that you really don't like Ice Edge after the ManU thing. I get it. They made you look foolish, though it didn't take a lot, so they're the joke. Okay.
As for the Goldwater Institute. Gerald over at From the Rink did a pretty good job of showing why they shouldn't be an issue through all the legalese.
The two then go on about how much each party is paying, how much the city could be putting in ad how the CFD works. Though in that period Shoalts does manage to call the residents of Glendale "the dumbest, most docile tax payers on the continent." Aside from that it was a lot of specualtion about how the CFD works how much money that translates into and sums up in the position that really this is just going to fall apart in a few years anyhow so the residents of Winnipeg shouldn't worry too much. Glad you're looking out for them buddy.
Then they moved on and Shoalts specualted that he didn't think that last season translated into much.Then:
Shoalts: "They sold out their home opener, which most teams do, but I don't think they've tripled season ticket sales,I don't think they've sold out every suite, I'd be surprised if they're making any significant money from their broadcast contract, so you know, they're gonna stagger on for another year or so until somebody cries uncle from paying for the losses, whether that's Hulsizer or that's Glendale. The NHL guys say that they're really just going to subsidize losses for 2 or 3 years since Jerry Moyes and Balsillie ruined the franchise. You know that franchise was struggling long before Jim Balsillie showed up.
McCown: It was ruined before Jim Balsillie showed up.
Shoalts: It was ruined when Ellman decided to build an arena way out in the West Valley away from any hockey fan with money in his pants.
FYI: Guess who else has suites available for purchase? The Toronto Maple Leafs and pretty much every NHL team in the league as well as those in most teams in every sport. Companies aren't buying entire suites anymore as they can't afford it. That's not unique to the Coyotes. Not tripling season tickets? Probably right, I don't know, but they're improving. The TV deal? Who knows, but it's only a one year deal like before so once the team is cemented here they can work something out. I do like that every one of those statements was preceeded with "I think" though. It's not like he knows much about it.
To the other part, sure this team was in trouble. Every owner they had wanted to use it to get something The arena was simply a mechanism to get the real estate. Nothing more to Ellman. Moyes used it to get tax breaks and pay himself out of the team. It was a gong show due to mismanagement not a lack of hockey knowledge or desire in the valley. The arena should have been built in Scottsdale at Los Arcos sure. But they didn't want it. Though guess what they're looking at building there now? A smaller event arena. I have no idea why.
Honestly go ahead and listen to the interview. The amazing thing is that is David Shoalts bothered to actually just report facts instead of insulting fans and taxpayers like other outlets do people might actually respect him. It would sell just as many papers too. I'm past being mad at the guy. At this point he's just sad. See? I made it through a whole article about the guy without calling him any names, though I did question his fashion. That doesn't count though does it?