David Pollak of the Mercury News reports the San Jose Sharks owners declared they lost $15 million last season despite selling out all 41 home games and both playoff games against St. Louis.
Fear not Sharks fans, ownership says they’re OK with losing money because they’re committed to winning.
“We’re OK with that because that’s a decision we’ve made to stay competitive,” said Kevin Compton, referring to the fact his team’s player payroll bumped up against the NHL salary cap.
In case you didn’t know, Compton is the head of the Sharks’ ownership group. It makes for a bold statement considering San Jose has yet to make the Stanley Cup finals, but Compton also says the team isn’t hurting for money.
“We’re a completely liquid organization and so far have continued to fund operations by choice,” Compton said. “This isn’t Phoenix.”
That’s a sick burn considering former Sharks CEO Greg Jamison is now trying to purchase the Phoenix Coyotes.
Now you have to ask the question: Are the Sharks’ owners being open about losses because of the ongoing CBA negotiations where the NHL is trying to knock their costs down again with the players? It certainly makes for convenient timing for the owners to have a what’s believed to be a successful franchise claim they’re losing money.
It looks like former NHL star Luc Robitaille’s Santa Monica home will go into foreclosure, but it’s not all bad news. He probably won’t lose his home or his job as the Los Angeles Kings’ president of business operations, according to Helene Elliott of the Los Angeles Times.
Elliott’s report indicates that Robitaille is suffering from a “soured business relationship” with William “Boots” Del Biaggio III that allegedly left the former hockey player with a $2 million line of credit. You might remember “Boots” from his attempts to become involved with a potential Kansas City NHL franchise and later attempts to buy a piece of the Nashville Predators. Del Biaggo was eventually found guilty of forging documents as he tried to acquire $110 million worth of loans. Convictions related to that fraudulent behavior eventually landed him a 97-month prison sentence.
Long story short, you cannot really blame Robitaille too much for failing to realize that Del Biaggo wasn’t as reliable as he claimed to be. The jailed financier burned a lot of people – including quite a few connected to the NHL – along the way.
Again, the good news is that it looks like Robitaille will be able to fight through the ordeal.
Tim Leiweke, president of the Kings’ parent company, AEG, said via email that AEG is working with Luc Robitaille and the former player’s wife, Stacia.
“This issue,” said Leiweke, “is short term, very fixable and will not have an impact on Luc’s responsibilities with the L.A. Kings.”
One might be surprised to learn about his financial difficulties considering that he made $35 million during his 19-year NHL career, according to the Montreal Gazette’s estimate. That being said, it’s a relief to hear that Robitaille should be able to land on his feet after dealing with a few stumbles. He is “Lucky Luc,” after all.