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Judge turns down bids by NHL and Jim Balsillie to buy the Coyotes

October 01, 2009|Wire Reports

The NHL could claim a partial victory Wednesday after a U.S. bankruptcy judge rejected bids by the league and Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie to purchase the Phoenix Coyotes.

Judge Redfield T. Baum rejected outright Balsillie's offer to purchase the team and move it to Hamilton, Canada, which the NHL had vehemently opposed. The judge upheld the league's right to decide who owns its teams and where they play.

Although Baum also turned down the NHL offer, he left the door open for the league to go ahead and purchase the franchise if it amends its bid to treat Coyotes owner Jerry Moyes and ex-coach Wayne Gretzky more favorably.

"In hockey parlance, the court is passing the puck to the NHL who can decide to take another shot at the sale net or it can pass off the puck," Baum wrote.

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly issued a statement saying the league is "pleased that the bankruptcy court has confirmed the league's rights to select its owners and the location of its franchises."

Former Toronto Maple Leafs captain Mats Sundin, 38, is retiring from hockey after nearly two decades in the NHL. . . . The Carolina Hurricanes have locked up goaltender Cam Ward for six more years. The Hurricanes signed Ward to a $37.8-million contract that begins next season and runs through 2015-16.


Meyer confirms Tebow improving

Florida Coach Urban Meyer says quarterback Tim Tebow is improving after sustaining a concussion.

Meyer said on the weekly Southeastern Conference teleconference that Tebow "looked terrific" when he saw him late Tuesday night.

"That's the best I've seen him," Meyer said.

University of New Mexico administrators have opened an investigation into a fight in which Coach Mike Locksley struck assistant J.B. Gerald, and the first-year coach could face suspension or firing. . . . Iowa State wide receiver Darius Reynolds is out for the rest of the season after breaking his right ankle in practice. The school says the Cyclones' second-leading receiver was injured Tuesday. . . . Wyoming Coach Dave Christensen underwent surgery to remove a kidney stone and should be on the sidelines when the Cowboys travel to Florida Atlantic this weekend. . . . Daniel Porter ran for 160 yards and two touchdowns and Louisiana Tech (2-2, 1-0) ended Hawaii's streak of 62 games with a touchdown in a 27-6 win in a Western Athletic Conference game at Ruston, La. Hawaii fell to 2-2, 0-1.


Patrick still mum about her future

Danica Patrick refused to confirm widespread reports that she has agreed to a three-year extension of her IndyCar contract with Andretti Green Racing.

Asked specifically about the extension, Patrick simply shook her head, not saying a word.

Patrick is considered the biggest draw in the IRL, and her interest in moving to NASCAR has been speculated on numerous times in recent years.

IRL officials have not commented about Patrick's future.

Ferrari reached an agreement to sign driver Fernando Alonso, replacing Kimi Raikkonen starting next season. The Formula One team said in a statement it's a three-year agreement with the two-time world champion.


Vick and Nike back in business

Michael Vick is back with Nike two years after the company severed ties because of the quarterback's involvement in a dogfighting ring.

"Mike has a long-standing, great relationship with Nike, and he looks forward to continuing that relationship," his agent, Joel Segal, said.

Segal would not reveal terms of the agreement. Nike declined to comment.

A Nevada judge denied motions by lawyers for Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to dismiss a civil lawsuit alleging he raped a Lake Tahoe casino worker, according to court documents.

Galaxy forward Landon Donovan, Tim Howard and Jozy Altidore are finalists for the 2009 Honda Player of the Year Award that honors the best performer on the U.S. national soccer team. A panel of 221 sports journalists selected the final three, with the winner to be announced Oct. 20 in Los Angeles.

Rafael Nadal has recovered from an abdominal injury and made himself available for Spain's Davis Cup final against the Czech Republic in December.

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