SAVILLE: ANOTHER KATZ MOUTHPIECE?

Robin Brownlee
September 22 2012 12:33AM

The stance by some citizens in this city seems to be that any member of the media who supports putting more money on the table to help build an arena in partnership with Edmonton Oilers owner Daryl Katz should be dismissed as a mouthpiece or a fartcatcher.

Others sit smugly and suggest that if Katz and the Oilers want a new arena, they can damn well pick up the tab because, after all, there's no way Katz is going to pull up stakes and move the team to another city that offers a sweeter deal. Even the faintest suggestion that could happen is characterized as fear mongering and bluffing by Katz.

It follows, then, that anybody in the local media who doesn't discount the possibility that shelving or delaying the downtown arena project might result in the Oilers leaving town for a destination that is building a rink or already has one is, again, a fartcatcher or a mouthpiece.

Bob Stauffer of 630 CHED gets tarred with that brush often, of course, as he's an employee of the Oilers and, it follows, is bought and paid for by Katz and Rexall Sports. People say Stauffer's a Yes Man. A shill. The opinion of people who feel that way has been strengthened in recent days as Stauffer has tip-toed around the possibility of Edmonton losing the team if the arena isn't built. "There goes Bob again, doing the bidding for Katz . . ."

SAVILLE WADES IN

I don't know if you heard Stauffer's interview with former EIG member Bruce Saville on Oilers Now today, but if you haven't, you can follow this link to the podcast. Give it a listen. It might just send shivers down your spine. At the very least, it should provide those who scoff at the possibility the Oilers will ever leave town pause for thought.

Saville, last time I checked, isn't a member of the segment of the media deemed by some to be pitchmen for Katz. Saville, near as I can tell, isn't a Katz Yes man, a mouthpiece, a fartcatcher. Katz isn't his boss. Katz doesn't sign Saville's cheques. Here's some excerpts – listen to the entire interview for context – of Saville's interview with Stauffer.

STAUFFER: ". . . I think it's naïve to believe there aren't other options for Mr. Katz and the Katz group carrying forward. What happens, do you think, if a building doesn't get built in this city?"

SAVILLE: "If this arena doesn’t get built, the team's gone. I don't know how long it'll take – two years when the lease is over, maybe another year or two beyond that, but I would bet my life that, five years from now, if there's not a new arena or a hole in the ground or one almost finished, that the team will be gone and there won't be any team coming along behind it to replace it . . ."

SAVILLE: "Let's get it signed and get on with it. This isn’t a get rich scheme for Daryl Katz. People who think that are just jealous. They don't understand the deal. It's unfortunate that Daryl is a bit of an introvert, you know? He doesn't like to appear in public. He doesn’t like to speak in public. But that's his personality. We all have personality traits.

"That's the fact. Isn't that better than Peter Pocklington mouthing off and you can't believe a word he says, you know? Peter Pocklington never saw a microphone he didn't like. Thank God he's out of here. (Katz) is a solid, solid, solid guy who, for some reason, has not really had the support of the business community, the downtown, big company business community. They're not stepping up . . ."

Fartcatcher? Mouthpiece? I think not.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#1 Boourns99
September 22 2012, 12:42AM
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This needs to happen. Now.

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#2 Ricky
September 22 2012, 12:44AM
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Welcome you on Oilers Now with Stauffer and Brownlee...fart catchers

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#3 heavyoilcountry
September 22 2012, 12:45AM
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Didn't Saville get a pay-out from Daryl to the tune of about 20million?? If I invested $7million into a team & you gave me $20million for it later on, I'd be happy to "tow the line" for you too, whatever that may be

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#4 longbottom/P.Biglow
September 22 2012, 01:30AM
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heavyoilcountry wrote:

Didn't Saville get a pay-out from Daryl to the tune of about 20million?? If I invested $7million into a team & you gave me $20million for it later on, I'd be happy to "tow the line" for you too, whatever that may be

WOW, Now buying something in this town and selling it now is against all rules of good form? Lets see now I may be wrong or just a homer or just OLD( I did just hit the half century mark this year) Saville was part of a group that spent 80m to buy the Oilers from Polkington then turned around and sold it several years later after putting how much money extra that I do not know.(there was at least 4 to five cash calls between this time) Now my friend you suggest he is towing the line for Katz??????

Lets just turn this puppy around and say anyone with the opinion of ant line of thinking against Saville and Stauffer is very very Niave.(To put it bluntly) It took Winnipeg 15 years to get the NHL back, Quebec still hasn't gotten their team back.(I heard a rumor two years ago the Katz could get a sweetheart deal from Either Hamilton or Quebec). Now lets see the line for getting an NHL team is getting a little longer with Seattle looking for one, Kansas City is still trying to get one, has the rumor of Houston ever gone away? This is the same line of thinking that almost ruined Edmonton with Mayor Jann Riemer and the Big Bussiness that all formed a line and belined to Calgary.(How many companies set up their head offices down the road 2 1/2 hours?)

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#5 Jasmine
September 22 2012, 01:30AM
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The team has been criticized since Katz became owner. People expected the first thing Katz would do is fire Lowe since fans hate Lowe. Since Katz didn't fire Lowe, people hate Katz. People wanted Lowe gone and because Katz didn't do, he's hated.

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#6 Jasmine
September 22 2012, 01:35AM
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Don't forget that idiot Caterina is still on city council as well as on Northlands BOG. That my friend is conflict of interest. All Caterina does is complain complain complain and never has anything to say. Same with Diotte. People on the Northlands BOG shouldn't be on city council as they're biased towards Northlands.

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#7 wiseguy
September 22 2012, 01:43AM
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Anyone find it convenient that guys who were bought out and may have interests in real estate development downtown are putting pressure on city council? Saville pushing the downtown arena now and Cal Nichols previously speaking for the anti-airport closure group when the airport lands were considered as another option for the downtown arena? Is it a stretch to suggest that they were given shares in Katz's downtown business and residential condo project for support as part of the Oiler's sale? They were after all, two of the first EIG members to be brought on board when Katz made the unsolicited offer to purchase the team. They were counted on to convince and pressure the other less willing members to sell the team to Katz. This is not a conspiracy theory, just putting 2 and 2 together for what are common corporate tactics. The flip side is that Saville truly believes that there are much better markets for a hockey team even though the NHL just reluctantly moved a team to Winnipeg with an undersized arena and a much weaker economy and smaller population.

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#8 Jasmine
September 22 2012, 01:50AM
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@wiseguy

Anyone find it convenient to criticize the Oilers and Katz every chance they get. The Oilers have been criticized since Katz took over because he didn't do what fans wanted him to do. Fans wanted Katz to fire Lowe when he bought the team. Since Katz didn't do it, he is now hated.

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#9 Travis Dakin
September 22 2012, 02:06AM
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Jasmine wrote:

Anyone find it convenient to criticize the Oilers and Katz every chance they get. The Oilers have been criticized since Katz took over because he didn't do what fans wanted him to do. Fans wanted Katz to fire Lowe when he bought the team. Since Katz didn't do it, he is now hated.

Jasmine, I don't know what it is with you and your anti-Oiler bashing stance. The Oilers have been "bashed" because they f*****g suck. Simple. The people in charge are "bashed" because they made the team that sucks.

As much as that pains me to say, its just not something that can be disputed.

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#10 JP
September 22 2012, 02:13AM
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Yeah it's a real shame that we're all just too jealous and dumb to understand what's going on.

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#11 TonyT
September 22 2012, 05:23AM
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First off, this city needs a new arena. If you think that Rexall can be beautified with a makeover, you simply haven't been to any other "major" arena in N. America. Add more seats, put in new tile, and a new coat of paint, and that concourse is still as wide as some CHL rinks. Never mind the "extras". Having said that, I don't believe Katz will move this team, if anything the EIG will reconvene and buy the team. You'd think that with the $60 SRO seats they'd be able to assemble a team that didn't finish dead last.

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#14 Ryan
September 22 2012, 07:17AM
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I wonder, if Katz got control over current Rexall and Northlands was ousted ... would Katz care so much to build that Arena? Seems to me he just wants the control of an NHL arena more than anything.

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#15 Sliderule
September 22 2012, 07:42AM
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At the moment Katz has three areas that are interested in an NHL team.Seattle,Kansas city or Quebec City. In all three areas there is a building either being built or already there.The only problem is in every case the building is owned by another party and he would just be a tenant.. If he really wants to run/own the building his best opportunity is Edmonton.

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#16 gongshow
September 22 2012, 07:51AM
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@ wiseguy

I don't know Katz, but I do have several friends and acquaintances who have ties to Saville and Nichols and I have never heard anything but positives about their character. Look at what these guys have done for our city so far and how they have put their money where their mouth is time and time again.

To paint them as as greedy is plain silly. I was good friends with one of the EIG and believe me that at the time the $80 million purchase price was not a low risk investment for these individuals. There was every possibility (back when the canadian dollar was near 60 cents) that the Oilers could have turned into the Coyotes - a perennial money pit.

Bruce Saville is as plugged in as anyone in this town and I think that he has earned the right to have his word taken at face value, so when he talks - we all would be wise to listen.

Stauffer on the other hand, whether he's right or wrong, is starting to sound like a carnival barker...

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#17 Spartacus
September 22 2012, 08:04AM
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SAVILLE: "Let's get it signed and get on with it. This isn’t a get rich scheme for Daryl Katz. People who think that are just jealous. They don't understand the deal. It's unfortunate that Daryl is a bit of an introvert, you know? He doesn't like to appear in public. He doesn’t like to speak in public. But that's his personality. We all have personality traits.

This excerpt is particularly insulting. If you don't like the deal, you're just jealous. Really? That's how you're going to address that issue? What grade are you in, Mr. Saville.

How can a billionaire owner not understand public relations? If you have the personality of a stone, hire someone to speak for you. Have that person speak your message clearly and without being insulting to the public.

Daryl Katz saying, "My wife thinks I'm crazy, OK?" regarding money he's allegedly spent on this project doesn't suddenly make me think, "Oh, his wife thinks he's crazy? Well, good enough for me. Give him everything he wants."

How about Daryl Katz actually contributes something to this deal? From what I've seen the man is every bit as much a liar as was Pocklington. Where's your 100 million? Oh, it's coming from future revenue from the building the City of Edmonton is going to build for you? Wonderful.

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#18 Morgie99
September 22 2012, 08:15AM
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First off Bob Stauffer is a loyal employee and has to be, and he is a shill like it or not

He lost all credibility when he suggested overpass' on the Henday were made so mothers in the Southwest could go shopping! He was trying to point out we have no problem spending millions on roads, but then squawk about arena funding, I wonder why? LOL It's called transportation. We drive cars etc

As for Katz, he's disingenuine in my eyes, says one thing does another, much like a politician

Vor commenting on a story called "grace" at lowetide has an excellent breakdown of potential arena costs revenues, etc

http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/09/grace.html

I used to think Katz purchase price was meaningless, but if he doesn't move the team it really isn't meaningless, he should expect a return on his investment, 5% per an um seems reasonable

So, based on Vor's calculations, assuming them to be accurate, Katz could make 28 mill in a good year or lose 10 mill in a year, depending on value of Canadian dollar, attendance etc

My problem is when you consider what the City is paying for this project almost 400 mill or more TSN article: 320 mill + pedway 25 mill + transit station http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=405733

The city's deal hinges on CRL working and we're still missing a 100 mill!

It seems Katz wants a guarantee ROI but what about the city, there's no guarantee, we'll even get province to pass CRL or that the CRL will pay off

Now Katz wants more!

The deal seems to rich already and frankly, I'd let the Oilers leave, there's already a lockout and we whould all practice getting on with our lives than subsidize a billionaire and unproven millionaire hockey players

Or the CRL is a boon and subsidizing these clowns is worth it, I pick the former

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#19 blue31
September 22 2012, 08:37AM
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Sadly, too many Edmontonians would rather lose the team than see Darryl Katz make money that "he doesn't deserve."

The spinoffs from a new arena would be enormous to Edmonton. Oilers leave town = 100s of lost jobs. New arena gets built = 1000s of new jobs. If the Oilers pack up & leave, we will never get a new arena in any form without an anchor tenant. And if we do, it will be 100% straight out of taxpayers wallets.

This is a reason why players don't want to come to Edmonton to enjoy our small-town mentality. This jealousy and hatred towards wealth and success absolutely astounds me.

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#20 wiseguy
September 22 2012, 08:54AM
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@gongshow

@gongshow

I am certainly not painting anyone as greedy. I think very highly of Mr. Saville and Mr. Nicols. They are businessmen trying to build something they think is worthwhile for the city. Unfortunately for taxpayers, their project requires an arena as a centerpiece for development to differentiate it from the airport lands which will have an equally impressive development to compete with. This is all a land and development project, not an arena project. The city will benefit because of the increased tax revenues that the area will bring in. However, you have to be very careful with projected tax levies as the recent downsizing and postponement of the Century Park project has shown.

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#21 RossCreekNation
September 22 2012, 08:59AM
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heavyoilcountry wrote:

Didn't Saville get a pay-out from Daryl to the tune of about 20million?? If I invested $7million into a team & you gave me $20million for it later on, I'd be happy to "tow the line" for you too, whatever that may be

So if you bought a house for 300k & then 10 yrs later were able to sell that house for 380k, you would take the buyers side on whatever issue b/c you made $ off that person, right?

You make it sound like Katz gave Saville $20M just to ho along with his scheme. It's business. The other investors all made $ on the deal... does that mean we should expect them all to "tow the line"?

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#22 Oilers_fan
September 22 2012, 09:04AM
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Can we just get this done, people are acting like building a new arena is bad for the city, how about not having a hockey team, isn't that bad for the city?

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#23 Morgie99
September 22 2012, 09:07AM
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blue31 wrote:

Sadly, too many Edmontonians would rather lose the team than see Darryl Katz make money that "he doesn't deserve."

The spinoffs from a new arena would be enormous to Edmonton. Oilers leave town = 100s of lost jobs. New arena gets built = 1000s of new jobs. If the Oilers pack up & leave, we will never get a new arena in any form without an anchor tenant. And if we do, it will be 100% straight out of taxpayers wallets.

This is a reason why players don't want to come to Edmonton to enjoy our small-town mentality. This jealousy and hatred towards wealth and success absolutely astounds me.

Hi Blue31

First, opposing this has nothing to do with JEALOUSY

It comes down to balance, subsidizing a billionaire and giving him all the profits, with city taking on all the risks, so we can subsidize this farce is the rationale

It has everything to do with fearing this might be a big financial mistake a white elephant

There are countless of examples.

And countless examples that suggested such projects would be a financial boon, and in the weren't

That's not jealousy!

Now if you're right, and this is going to be a financial boon for the city, then as much as I hate the subsidy, I'm on board.

But there's no guarantee that will happen, you don't know that and i don't that!

As a result, I think it's foolish for the city to take on all the risk, and all for what, to subsidize pro sports?

If it doesn't make financial sense, then why bother! If it does, then full steam ahead!

Regardless,the project still is missing 100 mill, and despite Mandel suggesting that money will come from MSI, Councillor Henderson who supports the original deal, says MSI will not be funding this, so we're still 100 mill short.

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#24 Spartacus
September 22 2012, 09:14AM
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edit: Damn! Double post.

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#25 Spartacus
September 22 2012, 09:21AM
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If I don't like the manner in which Katz has negotiated this arena deal, I must be jealous?

And if I'm against the war in Iraq, I must not be a patriot? I've seen this act before, I think they call it Dixie Chick-ing.

Stop talking to me like I'm an idiot and show me how this deal is fair to the City of Edmonton.

You don't even have to show that it's a good deal. Just show that it's somehow fair, that the person who will profit from this venture also invests in it and assumes some of the risk.

Katz claims that he's losing money running the Oilers. Meanwhile, Oilers fans have supported this P.O.S. team religiously, selling out every game since he's owned the club. Somehow, he can't make money. If that's true, it should be pretty easy to show your losses - not to the public, but to the City with which you're negotiating - yet he chooses not to prove this easily vefifiable claim while begging for more public money to finance an arena for his team to play in. The reason for that? He's a liar. Just ask Forbes.

I have to think that even a chimp could turn a profit with an NHL team in this city. Here's a suggestion for you Mr. Katz; do a better job of running your business.

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#26 justwondering
September 22 2012, 09:25AM
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I have come to the conclusion after reading blogs about this whole arena thing the past 41/2 years that there are a lot of people in Edmonton that are border line retarded. I don't think they would be happy if Katz wrote them a cheque. They have no idea of the benefits of a professional hockey team in the city, all they care about is that not 1 cent of their tax money goes towards building this. Yet they don't seem to mind that there tax dollars build libraries, museums, fund the arts, build roads and bridges, the government subsidizes Oil companies to the tune of billions of dollars, and pays for Healthcare, and education. Now how many of those things that are funded are really necessary or up front? You don't think someone is making a pile of cash in those venues? So when Katz takes his Oilers and his 30 or more millionaires and leaves town, you can bitch about how big of a crap hole Edmonton has become, and trust me everyone living outside of the city won't have a problem reminding you of it either.

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#27 The Real Scuba Steve
September 22 2012, 09:27AM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

You've been told before -- leave your "bashed" act over at HF. Last time I say it.

Wow lighten up it's just a blog.

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#28 Morgie99
September 22 2012, 09:28AM
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Spartacus wrote:

edit: Damn! Double post.

Spartacus,

Stop! You're making far too much sense.

We should resort to labels just to simplify the discussion LOL

You are absolutely right about Katz and his untruthful comments, they are such obvious lies, yet people just look past them or worse accept them as truth!

How the heck did the Oilers lose ANY money when they've been a revenue sharing team since Katz took over, giving money to the NHL for the financially struggling teams?

Forbes suggests the Oilers made 48 mill since 2008, according to Jonathan Willis, see blogger comments

http://www.fieldofschemes.com/2012/09/19/3810/edmonton-councillor-oilers-owner-wanted-operating-cash-tax-breaks-casino-license-pony/

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#29 Rob...
September 22 2012, 09:32AM
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Saying Bob tip-toes around the possibility that Edmonton may lose the team was hopefully meant as a joke. I've flipped radio stations in disgust at least 10 times in the last month when Bob's gone into fire and brimstone mode regarding that 'possibility'.

In my opinion, Bob's approach to this issue is turning more people against Katz and he needs to have his choke-chain yanked hard.

I do want a new arena deal done. I do want it to make sense for both sides and am of the opinion that if both sides are unhappy with final deal when they sign off on it, then it's likely a fair deal instead of a one-sided theft. Right now, the latest Katz demands seems to be a total screwing of the taxpayer. That is unacceptable considering whose money is at stake.

On a related note, when Katz bought the team I swear there was a promise of a Hockey Centre of Excellence or some such thing? Did I dream that or was something actually mentioned? I haven't heard anything since that first month on the subject.

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#30 Morgie99
September 22 2012, 09:33AM
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justwondering wrote:

I have come to the conclusion after reading blogs about this whole arena thing the past 41/2 years that there are a lot of people in Edmonton that are border line retarded. I don't think they would be happy if Katz wrote them a cheque. They have no idea of the benefits of a professional hockey team in the city, all they care about is that not 1 cent of their tax money goes towards building this. Yet they don't seem to mind that there tax dollars build libraries, museums, fund the arts, build roads and bridges, the government subsidizes Oil companies to the tune of billions of dollars, and pays for Healthcare, and education. Now how many of those things that are funded are really necessary or up front? You don't think someone is making a pile of cash in those venues? So when Katz takes his Oilers and his 30 or more millionaires and leaves town, you can bitch about how big of a crap hole Edmonton has become, and trust me everyone living outside of the city won't have a problem reminding you of it either.

Oh very true, many things are subsidized and worth it.

You've nailed it though, for too many, we just can't lose the Oilers at any cost, I could use your label here to describe that but I'll leave that for you

I'm sorry I don't think Edmonton will be a crap hole without NHL hockey, did you think that last lock out? Are you thinking about Edmonton in this lockout?

So without the OILERS Edmonton is a craphole?

Well, heck geez we better build it at all costs then LMAO

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#31 Kent Wilson
September 22 2012, 09:36AM
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I was one of those folks suggesting that it's highly...convenient Oilers Now hosted a guest who hints the team could be moved without a new arena (read: without a favorable public subsidy).

Personally, my point wasn't that Saville is a shill or that he was bought and paid for. Im guessing that truly is the opinion of some folks out there, including him.

What's suggestive is both the timing of his appearance (in the wake of the recent Katz public plea) and the fact that this was the particular guest who was chosen to speak on the matter. Particularly because you could throw a football in any economics department and hit 3 people who could tell you in graphic detail what a bad idea public funding for sports stadiums is.

Let me put it another way - I doubt Saville shows up on Oilers Now if his stance was "Edmonton is one of the strongest markets in the league and relocation seems highly unlikely. In addition, repeated studies have shown that public financing of private stadiums heightens taxpayer risk and has little long-term effect on civic economics."

All that said, I could be wrong. I don't live in Edmonton and don't listen to Stauffer's show, so there could be balance there I've missed.

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#32 Bushed
September 22 2012, 09:47AM
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A number of people have said or written that the critics don't understand the deal.

Then the arguments seem to shift to whether or not we believe Saville or Nicholls or Messier or Stauffer or Brownlee or Katz (or whoever supports the deal) is a person of character or a "stand-up guy" who can be trusted. That really isn't the point, and it's unfair to slag someone just for having a different opinion.

But it also does not help matters when the Katz group refuses to make the details of the deal public information. I understand that he would prefer not to bargain in public and have to react to every proposal made or changed along the process, but with significant public funding involved, playing the "trust me, I want what's best for Edmonton" card alone isn't enough.

Apart from the missing $100M, the other key problem right now is the operating money. If I pay you $5M a year in a deal that gives me back $6M a year, how can I seriously say I'm contributing anything to the deal? I know in Katz's mind there are lots of other costs and revenues and risks, and that in his mind the two numbers are not directly related, but he needs to back away far enough to appreciate an outsider's view OR explain it clearly enough that we CAN understand it. If he needs more time to do that, then fine, I can wait awhile, but at some point we need a clear rationale.

I don't want to see the team leave, but if the arena and team aren't viable for both the city and Katz, I'll have to (reluctantly) accept it.

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#33 TeddyTurnbuckle
September 22 2012, 09:58AM
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The arena is old. Even if there was no hockey team in Edmonton the city would still need a new entertainment complex for concerts and such which they would have to build on their own. The oilers are offering to split the costs. End of story. Take the deal or hold concerts in a high school gym in 10 years.

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#34 The Soup Fascist
September 22 2012, 10:02AM
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Oilers_fan wrote:

Can we just get this done, people are acting like building a new arena is bad for the city, how about not having a hockey team, isn't that bad for the city?

Truer words were never spoken.

The city as a whole -all of us- look like a bunch of rubes with this endless soap opera. Sit down and hammer out an agreement suitable to the city and the owner of the Oilers, already. It's not like there are 29 other funding agreement templates between NHL teams and municipalities to choose from. FRAC! Pick one!

The facts are 1) A major professional sports team is good for a city. 2) This particular pro team needs a new venue. PERIOD. Rexall is a 40 year old dump. 3) A downtown arena will accelerate or initiate development in that area. 4) Taxpayers don't want to get screwed - fair enough.

Why are all city projects not under this public scrutiny? I am way more outraged when I am stuck in traffic watching large parts of the Anthony Henday, that is less than two years old, being torn up and redone, than I am over whether there is tile or stone in the sh!tters of the new building. I wish I had spent more time bitching on "Edmonton Art Gallery Nation" asking about the overages on that white elephant, that I have yet to visit.

I am just so tired of the victim mentality and this whole outcry that if Katz makes a dime on this its terrible. Why? When does Katz get cheques from the city when the word "Edmonton" is flashed across the bottom of ESPN, TSN, FoxSports, MSG and countless other sports networks world-wide 82 (or fewer this year) nights a year?

I laugh at the suggestion made above, that billionaires are all these wonderful public speakers and PR mensches. Steven Jobs (RIP) was a world class knob, try reading about Oracle founder Larry Ellison, I recall very few stirring presentations from Howard Hughes. Look no further than NHL kook Charles Wang and his arena hijinx this summer. Who cares if Katz didn't make it to Toastmasters Wednesday nights?

Bottom line is there is a deal to be made. City council / Katz group - shut up and make it. As every day passes we look more and more like Bug Tussle.

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#35 TeddyTurnbuckle
September 22 2012, 10:03AM
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Its getting to the point that Oiler fans should start making non refundable donations. I don't even live in Edmonton but I'd chip in 100 bucks. I bet there are 10,000 oiler fans out there willing to do the same.

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#36 Peacecountry
September 22 2012, 10:06AM
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@wiseguy

Is there at point in that rant anything close to something resembling a fact? This isn't a conspiracy theory but your very close to slander and deffemation. It's bad when even when you use idle speculation your post was filled with words like 'could' and 'may'. Go crawl back under your rock

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#37 justwondering
September 22 2012, 10:21AM
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Morgie99 wrote:

Oh very true, many things are subsidized and worth it.

You've nailed it though, for too many, we just can't lose the Oilers at any cost, I could use your label here to describe that but I'll leave that for you

I'm sorry I don't think Edmonton will be a crap hole without NHL hockey, did you think that last lock out? Are you thinking about Edmonton in this lockout?

So without the OILERS Edmonton is a craphole?

Well, heck geez we better build it at all costs then LMAO

Actually I am thinking if they move... to another city. The present arena is a crap hole all ready... my lord could they have put the seats any closer together? That and it is not in the nicest area of the city... even the area where they plan to put the new arena is not all the nice... so anything would help. My point is as a City Edmonton needs to be progressive, and the time they have taken to hammer this thing out is really embarrassing not only to the city administrators, but to the city itself. You have council members who really are in conflict of interest because they are on the Northlands board, so my question is are they really there for what is best for Edmonton or Northlands? This argument I keep hearing (none of my tax dollars for Katz) blows me away. Edmonton has to do something to improve downtown anyways (because at present it is a crap hole) So it is going to cost the taxpayers money to do something regardless. Edmonton direly needs a new arena (yes that one is a crap hole too!) so they can build a new one and get rid of 2 crap holes, or they can keep the crap holes, loose the Oilers, and then spend a whole bunch of tax payer money improving the down town area, subsidize Northlands with tax payer money and complain some more! Trust me Edmonton needs Katz more the Katz needs Edmonton. But thanks for your reply and have a great day!

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#38 Quicksilver ballet
September 22 2012, 10:30AM
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Can't help but think Katz is part of the problem, trying to grind out every taxpayer dollar to be had. He could easily sell a minority interest in Rexall sports and entertainment. Have to believe fellows like Bruce Saville and Cal Nichols etc, would like to be part of this new facility legacy as well. Daryl maybe needs to swallow some pride and seek some inner circle help on this if he's that short on funds.

From Kats' actions, needlessly stretching out these proceedings, it looks as though the label of the House that Daryl built, is more important than just getting this thing built. Swallowing a little pride, 6 phone calls, and the shovels would have hit the ground a year ago. Katz could expedite this process by seeking the assistance from the pillars of that EIG, they wrote the book on doing what's best for Edmonton and less so for themselves.

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#39 pelhem grenville
September 22 2012, 10:31AM
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a very nice read ... i'm of the opinion that Mr.Saville is not a fartcatcher or a mouthpiece BUT just how much of a coincidence is it that this man shows up after Katz does his 'i wanna make this very clear' statement days before ... Bob's the fartcatcher & we all know that and he says what he says because he's paid to say it ...

...BUT here's a bit of the 'ol navel gazing Saturday morning brings me...i say it's entirely possible that when this season is totally lost in this lockout and history goes on to repeat itself, we go on(as we did the year after the last lockout)as a last playoff seed to the Stanley Cup Final again in the spring of 2014 only this time we[just might] win it ALL!!!...AND in the old barn that is Rexall Place... only then does the arena get built...

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#40 The Soup Fascist
September 22 2012, 10:33AM
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Spartacus wrote:

If I don't like the manner in which Katz has negotiated this arena deal, I must be jealous?

And if I'm against the war in Iraq, I must not be a patriot? I've seen this act before, I think they call it Dixie Chick-ing.

Stop talking to me like I'm an idiot and show me how this deal is fair to the City of Edmonton.

You don't even have to show that it's a good deal. Just show that it's somehow fair, that the person who will profit from this venture also invests in it and assumes some of the risk.

Katz claims that he's losing money running the Oilers. Meanwhile, Oilers fans have supported this P.O.S. team religiously, selling out every game since he's owned the club. Somehow, he can't make money. If that's true, it should be pretty easy to show your losses - not to the public, but to the City with which you're negotiating - yet he chooses not to prove this easily vefifiable claim while begging for more public money to finance an arena for his team to play in. The reason for that? He's a liar. Just ask Forbes.

I have to think that even a chimp could turn a profit with an NHL team in this city. Here's a suggestion for you Mr. Katz; do a better job of running your business.

... Ahhh but where would that chimp have gotten the original $218 million to buy the team - that is the question.

The best part of your whole diatribe is giving business suggestions to Katz. How about some hockey tips for one Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, if you have the time?

Thanks for the laugh. You went from merely ridiculous to sublime in a couple of paragraphs. Well done.

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#41 reb98
September 22 2012, 10:44AM
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The Soup Fascist wrote:

Truer words were never spoken.

The city as a whole -all of us- look like a bunch of rubes with this endless soap opera. Sit down and hammer out an agreement suitable to the city and the owner of the Oilers, already. It's not like there are 29 other funding agreement templates between NHL teams and municipalities to choose from. FRAC! Pick one!

The facts are 1) A major professional sports team is good for a city. 2) This particular pro team needs a new venue. PERIOD. Rexall is a 40 year old dump. 3) A downtown arena will accelerate or initiate development in that area. 4) Taxpayers don't want to get screwed - fair enough.

Why are all city projects not under this public scrutiny? I am way more outraged when I am stuck in traffic watching large parts of the Anthony Henday, that is less than two years old, being torn up and redone, than I am over whether there is tile or stone in the sh!tters of the new building. I wish I had spent more time bitching on "Edmonton Art Gallery Nation" asking about the overages on that white elephant, that I have yet to visit.

I am just so tired of the victim mentality and this whole outcry that if Katz makes a dime on this its terrible. Why? When does Katz get cheques from the city when the word "Edmonton" is flashed across the bottom of ESPN, TSN, FoxSports, MSG and countless other sports networks world-wide 82 (or fewer this year) nights a year?

I laugh at the suggestion made above, that billionaires are all these wonderful public speakers and PR mensches. Steven Jobs (RIP) was a world class knob, try reading about Oracle founder Larry Ellison, I recall very few stirring presentations from Howard Hughes. Look no further than NHL kook Charles Wang and his arena hijinx this summer. Who cares if Katz didn't make it to Toastmasters Wednesday nights?

Bottom line is there is a deal to be made. City council / Katz group - shut up and make it. As every day passes we look more and more like Bug Tussle.

Well said!

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#42 Tyler
September 22 2012, 10:50AM
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Bob Stauffer of 630 CHED gets tarred with that brush often, of course, as he's an employee of the Oilers and, it follows, is bought and paid for by Katz and Rexall Sports. People say Stauffer's a Yes Man. A shill. The opinion of people who feel that way has been strengthened in recent days as Stauffer has tip-toed around the possibility of Edmonton losing the team if the arena isn't built. "There goes Bob again, doing the bidding for Katz . . ."

Yeah, poor Bob. Can't believe a guy who has real estate developers on and asks them if it's ok to make profits takes a credibility hit.

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#43 SorryToSay
September 22 2012, 10:59AM
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I do not see how anyone can support the current arena negotiations until the Katz group goes public with their demands. It seems to me that if the Katz group was confident that their proposal was good for Edmontonians that they would jump at the chance to shout it from the rooftops. I think it is EXTREMELY telling of the Katz group that instead of taking their proposal public, they are resorting to fear mongering about the team leaving the city. The Katz group is using Oilers fans as hostages against city council, f**cking awesome guys.

Regardless if Saville is a shill or not, he was spouting his *opinion*, not fact, on a radio show hosted by an employee of the Katz group. Even if you have nothing but respect for Saville, the way in which he is expressing his opinions is NOT impartial in this case, and to take his words as an impartial opinion is simply irresponsible.

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#44 Karth
September 22 2012, 11:01AM
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Reading some of these comments- I am more and more glad I left Edmonton. It was extremely hard to do at first but if you have money you should move to Calgary.

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#45 Really
September 22 2012, 11:03AM
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TeddyTurnbuckle wrote:

The arena is old. Even if there was no hockey team in Edmonton the city would still need a new entertainment complex for concerts and such which they would have to build on their own. The oilers are offering to split the costs. End of story. Take the deal or hold concerts in a high school gym in 10 years.

How, exactly, are the Oilers splitting the costs of the new arena? The portion that they are "chipping in" is borrowed from the city, and they are now asking for a subsidy that is greater than their loan payments.

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#46 S_DUB
September 22 2012, 11:05AM
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The Soup Fascist, I don't think the word "fact" means what you think it means.

"2. This particular pro team needs a new venue. PERIOD. Rexall is a 40 year old dump."

Why? When anyone asks why Rexall is insufficient, its a vague response that "its not up to current NHL standards". It's not shiny enough? Not enough restaurants? I'll admit that its small, and sight-lines are not the best, but it still works! The same thing could be said about Fenway Park, the most storied venue in baseball!

"3. A downtown arena will accelerate or initiate development in that area."

Studies have consistently shown this to be untrue. I don't necessarily believe it won't work here, but that's not a fact.

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#47 RossCreekNation
September 22 2012, 11:05AM
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Ylu know what else I find to be a "coincidence"? When movie stars show up on talk shows like Leno/Letterman/etc as soom as they have a new movie to promote. HOW CONVENIENT!!! derp

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#48 RossCreekNation
September 22 2012, 11:08AM
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Frickin thumbs

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#49 Morgie99
September 22 2012, 11:22AM
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justwondering wrote:

Actually I am thinking if they move... to another city. The present arena is a crap hole all ready... my lord could they have put the seats any closer together? That and it is not in the nicest area of the city... even the area where they plan to put the new arena is not all the nice... so anything would help. My point is as a City Edmonton needs to be progressive, and the time they have taken to hammer this thing out is really embarrassing not only to the city administrators, but to the city itself. You have council members who really are in conflict of interest because they are on the Northlands board, so my question is are they really there for what is best for Edmonton or Northlands? This argument I keep hearing (none of my tax dollars for Katz) blows me away. Edmonton has to do something to improve downtown anyways (because at present it is a crap hole) So it is going to cost the taxpayers money to do something regardless. Edmonton direly needs a new arena (yes that one is a crap hole too!) so they can build a new one and get rid of 2 crap holes, or they can keep the crap holes, loose the Oilers, and then spend a whole bunch of tax payer money improving the down town area, subsidize Northlands with tax payer money and complain some more! Trust me Edmonton needs Katz more the Katz needs Edmonton. But thanks for your reply and have a great day!

First, yes, North lands area is a crap hole, always will be, but so are many stadiums in north america, they are in crap hole areas, it's not pretty but it is what it is

Rexall concourse could be widened, put in new seats for $250 mill a lot less than the city spending 400 mill +

Yes, the negotiation is embarrassing, but assuming if one side is unreasonable, how do you negotiate?

Yes, a couple of Councillors were in conflict of interest, I think that's why Caterina left the board. But, Leibovici who supports this is in conflict of interest, her husband is a VP for Rexall, it goes both ways for both sides.

Downtown is already building all over the place, just take a look, many, many projects are happening, and are too happen without the Arena, and the biggest ones are happening without the arena,

And, No Edmonton doesn't need Katz, period

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#50 Dave Lumley
September 22 2012, 11:23AM
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Couple of things; Instead of jumping all over Stauffer and Ssville, they are just stating a fact. If the deal does not get done, the team will be moving. He is just giving voice to it. We have come close to losing the team before and the next time it happens it will all be hingeing on having a arena to play in. The EIG sold because they could not take the project on. Even if Katz is forced to sell to some other rich guy, they still need somewhere to play and a new arena will still have to be built. Doing it now is already generating investment, construction and new tax revenue around the site.

I firmly believe that if Calgary was needing to rebuild the Saddledome first, the Provincial Government would be finding a way to make it happen. No leadership assistance coming for Redmonton. At least the Wildrose offered a lottery funding proposal.

Speaking of secrecy; check out the City of Edmonton website and try and find out what projects like the upgrades on the Capilano Library or the new fascade on the downtown library will cost. Not a whisper of how much they will spend.

And finally, didn't anyone actually listen to Katz. They had a proposed deal were the city was to pursue and locate operational funds. The city failed and flipped it back on to Katz.

A city runs on growth and you need to attact investment for that to happen. Are the Oilers an assest? You better believe it, but more so, the negative publicity for losing the team will be worth billions. You can almost hear the cackling coming from down south.

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