Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Mayor: We'll survive Thrashers exit

ATLANTA — The Thrashers' sale and move to Winnipeg is still not official, but Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed talked Tuesday as if losing the team is inevitable.

"I think any time we lose a major sports franchise, it is tough," Reed said.

"It is going to hurt the city, but we will withstand it just fine, and we will get through it. We have a lot of positive things going on in the sports franchise space that I think we'll be announcing pretty soon that will offset it a bit."

This would not be the first time longtime Atlanta hockey fans have suffered the pain of losing a team to Canada. Atlanta lost its first NHL team in 1980 when the Flames moved to Calgary.

Reed said the city was willing to work to keep the Thrashers but had no success in its search for a buyer to keep the team in Atlanta. Reed's office has joined the Thrashers' ownership group, Atlanta Spirit, in the search.

"I've been working very hard to be as helpful as I can, but the Thrashers, as you know, are in an extraordinary position because of the amount of the (financial) losses associated with the team," Reed said. "We have not yet seen a path where we can reverse those losses fast enough."

The Thrashers' owners are in talks with True North Sports and Entertainment, which would relocate the team to Winnipeg. Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz told the National Post in Canada on Tuesday he expects the sale to be final this week.

Atlanta Spirit says the team has lost more than $150 million since 2005.

True North reportedly is willing to pay $110 million for the team and another $60 million to the league as a relocation fee.

Salary cap: The cap will go up next season, possibly to between $60.5 million and $63.5 million, deputy commissioner Bill Daly told the annual conference of the Sports Lawyers Association. The cap, based on hockey-related revenue, was $59.4 million this season. It has gone up each year since the current collective agreement went into effect for the 2005-06 season. The league is expecting to post record revenue of close to $3 billion this season, Daly told the weekend gathering in Washington, in comments reported by the Montreal Gazette. That would be an increase of more than $200 million from the previous season.

Hall of Famer Mikita has cancer: Blackhawks legend Stan Mikita will be treated for Stage 1 oral cancer, the team said. His prognosis is excellent, said his doctor, Richard Borrowdale of Chicago's Loyola Medical Center. Mikita, who turned 71 Friday, led the league in scoring four times and was a two-time winner of the Hart Trophy as the league's most valuable player in playing 22 seasons with Chicago. The Sokolce, Czechoslovakia, native retired during the 1979-80 season and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1983.

Mayor: We'll survive Thrashers exit 05/24/11 [Last modified: Thursday, May 26, 2011 9:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs' Doug Martin relying on strength from drug rehab to power his return


    TAMPA — He would not talk about the drug he abused. He would not identify the rehab facility he entered in January or how long he was there.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Doug Martin participates in an "open OTA practice" at One Buc Place, the team's training facility, in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.
  2. NCAA: Former USF basketball assistant gave improper benefits


    TAMPA — Former USF men's basketball assistant coach Oliver Antigua provided impermissible benefits, including lodging at his home, for two prospective student-athletes while they received on-campus tutoring, according to findings reported to the school by the NCAA.

  3. Back to .500, Rays feel ready to roll (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Who wants to be mediocre? Middling? Average? Run-of-the-mill?

    Rays catcher Jesus Sucre tags out the Angels’ Mike Trout trying to score from second base after a perfect peg from rightfielder Steven Souza Jr. in the first inning.
  4. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. preserves shutout with perfect throw

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The closest the Angels came to scoring off RHP Matt Andriese in Thursday's 4-0 Rays victory occurred in the first inning, when DH Mike Trout tried to score from second on a single to right. But the throw from RF Steven Souza Jr. was on the money, and Trout was out.

    "That …

    Colby Rasmus collects high fives and shoulder rubs after driving in all four of the Rays’ runs in their victory Thursday. Rasmus had two run-scoring hits a day after hitting a home run.
  5. Rays at Twins, 8:10 p.m. Friday, Minneapolis

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Twins

    8:10, Target Field, Minnesota

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM

    Probable pitchers

    Rays: RH Chris Archer (3-3, 3.76)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Chris Archer #22 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)