Saturday, September 05, 2009

Can the Maple Leafs veto a franchise move to Hamilton?

The NHL executives have repeatedly said no. Gary Balsillie is suggesting that the Leafs insist they have a veto. Of course, MLSE has been silent through all this.

Article IV of the NHL Constitution seems to be pretty clear. Each time has exclusive control of hockey games in its territory. A team's territory extends 50 miles beyond the city's limits. For the Maple Leafs that clearly includes Hamilton. Notice the last line "No franchise shall be granted for a home territory within the home territory of a member, without the written consent of such member." That appears to be a veto to me.