Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Who Owns The Canucks?

Lawyers for Orca Bay are quite busy these days. They have to deal with Steve Moore's lawsuits even though all the individuals named in those lawsuits - Brian Burke, Marc Crawford, Todd Bertuzzi and Brad May - are no longer around. But also today, Ed Willes (Vancouver Province) reports on another lawsuit that has so far flown under the radar - the one that determines who actually owns the Vancouver Canucks.
The guts of this matter go back to October/November 2004 when Ryan Beedie and Gaglardi were negotiating to purchase Orca Bay Sports and Entertainment -- i.e. the Canucks and GM Place. Acccording to court documents, McCaw, then the full owner of Orca Bay, made a proposal to the would-be purchasers on Oct. 30. After the Beedie-Gaglardi group responded in writing three days later, they were told on Nov. 5 that the Oct. 30 offer was off the table and negotiations were at an end.

This became interesting when, 12 days later, Aquilini purchased 50 per cent of Orca Bay from McCaw. Aquilini, who declined to comment on the case, had originally been partners with Ryan Beedie and Gaglardi but, according to court documents, had dropped out of the partnership in March of '04.
Some two months after Aquilini's purchase, the Beedie-Gaglardi group filed suit for, ahem, breaches of contract, fiduciary duty and duty of confidence.

The matter has since been in the discovery phase -- where lawyers from both sides gather evidence from all involved -- for most of the past year.
And Beedie and Gaglardi are aren't just suing for pride.
For starters, it should be noted that Beedie and Gaglardi aren't suing just for damages. They're suing to have the Oct. 30 deal reinstated so they can assume ownership of the Canucks.
Winner gets to sit in the owner's box; loser gets to keep their season tickets.

More background information here and here. A tentative trial date has been set for April 2007.

Comments/Questions: Feel free to post in the comments section or email me at gocanucksgo10 (at) hotmail (dot) com.

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posted by J.J. Guerrero, 7:32 AM


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