The lawyer for Jim Balsillie yesterday was likely wondering where some important proof might be found to support the veto case against MLSE and the Toronto Maple Leafs…..he couldn’t find it…..but, it is around, just getting a little old.
Someone from the NHL attorney pool said the veto right idea was conjured up, and was false. They said the idea of it existing was something out of the Twilight Zone.
Gary Bettman’s reaction to the lawyer for the NHL flanking the Balsillie side must have been amusing to see. Any chance to demonstrate anything ridiculous that Balillie and his lawyers could come up with must be supported with head nodding, as if it would make a big impression on the mind of a judge more focused than one might think. Don’t let the seemingly slow movement of this case fool you. There is lots going on in a calculating fashion by the man who counts in the courtroom.
Judge Baum had said that if article 4.3 was wrong why not remove it? That’s what we have all been saying, but we know better now. We know it is there to appease those Leafs. But, “there is no need to your honour, it doesn’t apply here anyway, it takes a majority vote”.
Let’s be honest NHL, do you think if you keep saying it long enough everyone will believe that, and you might even convince yourselves? No amount of head nodding in a Glendale courtroom by Gary Bettman is going to convince anyone either. I would hope.
So what happened with that veto issue in court yesterday…..
Oh, here it is, according to Brahm Resnik posting on Twitter, the comment from the NHL attorney was the veto rights were “made up“.
We also had a very suspicious judge asking the important question related to the 26-0 vote against Jim Balsillie. If Craig Leipold’s information related to how the Nashville deal went down was flawed, and the Board of Governors used that to form an opinion about Balsillie, how could their opinions then be ‘accurate‘?
The high profile, antitrust lawyer for the NHL , Goldfein, went on to explain that the Board’s vote against Jim was not debatable, not attackable, and could otherwise not be challenged. How convenient.
He used the big word that the big high priced lawyers used, “unassailable“. Whew, we shook on that one, scrambling for our dictionairies. That man must be smart. And, judge Baum said there was nothing new they could tell us. See, we all learn something every day. That was so worth it.
Judge Baum, likely in some reflection at times had some important issues floating through his mind no doubt.
An important one was how as a judge he was going to pull this one off.
And the crowd wonders if he will kick Jim Balsillie out? Please! Don’t worry about that.
There may seem to not be too much happening, but there is a lot going on in the calculating mind of judge Baum, let’s not kid ourselves.
I won’t get into it too deep yet, but we have a judge that knows that this is likely a case of antitrust in the making, but has been given no proof. It’s not his department from a legal point, but it is from a decision-making point. Oh, there I go giving away some secrets again.
The judge has a proposed owner that the NHL does not want in for “character” reasons, but he knows better. He’s hinted at his thinking. Did you catch it?
It is and has been what the Balsillie camp has described as a “lawyers creation”, the devising of the excuse to avoid the bigger legal issues. Is anybody fooled? Not a chance. Especially judge Baum. He is way too smart for that.
Resnik may have reported that the judge wasn’t buying it (veto proof), but what was really happening is he was asking for as much as he could get for future use. ‘Give me all you got boys, come on!’ ‘You can do better than this’.
In an upcoming article, I will look into what might be happening in the seemingly slow moving case. Suffice it to say there is a lot of thinking going on somewhere, and you can bank on that. I want to be able to give that thought proper justice, and will get back to the task at hand here – the twilight zone.
So, the question that we have no proof for judge Baum is the veto issue.
OK, well, not everyone can be wrong.
And, on June 4th, Jim Kelley was very confident in his source that the Leafs were willing to uphold the twilight zone veto, that the NHL says does not exist, and is made up:
“We’ve been told that the Leafs have made their feelings known to the league,” a source with knowledge of the proceedings told sportsnet.ca. “It’s our understanding that no matter who is behind this group the Leafs have no intention of allowing a second team into their marketplace and that they, not the National Hockey League, have the final say in this matter.”
That would set the stage for a lawsuit of massive proportions against the league and its member teams. It would also set the Leafs against the NHL and what it perceives to be its right to determine where franchises go.
“(The Leafs) will sue the league if it attempts to bring a team to the marketplace without their permission and they will sue each of the individual member teams should any one of them bring a team to the marketplace to play that team without their permission. They believe they have that right under the NHL constitution,” the source said.
But don’t worry folks, Gary Bettman has it under control because he has told all the owners ‘on repeated occasions’ that the veto issue will not be enforced. But, what Bettman didn’t tell us is how he would make sure he didn’t have to enforce it. That’s right, find another excuse, like, a 26-0 vote in a character assasination on any owner wanting to place a team in the powerful Leafs twilight zone.
Anybody fooled? No. Good.
More on the mind and thinking of the judge to come.