MLSE For Sale?

Now that I have seen the full segment on this, I decided to re-write my original article. According to Al Strachan, Russian-Canadian Billionaire Alexander Schnaider has inquired about purchasing at least a portion if not all of MLSE. Strachan reported this news on The Spin Friday night on The Score.

Alexander Schnaider ranks in the low-400’s on Forbes list of Billionaires and is worth a reported 1.8 Billion dollars. However, I could not find his name on a recent Forbes list but found an article that stated he ranked 488th in 2005, with a then net-worth of 1.4 Billion (

Steve Kouleas said on The Spin that Schnaider has or does own a Formula 1 Race Team and also owns an Israeli soccer team. Also, Kouleas, Ludzik and Strachan all speculated that if Schnaider wished to purchase all of MLSE, it would cost him in the area of 1.3 Billion at least. Also, according to Strachan’s “sources”, Larry Tanenbaum is entertaining an offer from Schnaider for his portion of MLSE as he apparently gave Schnaider a certain price that may be “astronomical” according to Strachan.

Personally speaking, I’m taking this news with a grain of salt, as it is Al Strachan who was saying this on The Spin. But if Schnaider does somehow buy the Leafs, he may very well be what the team is looking for in terms of stability. I believe that if the deal does in fact happen, Larry Tanenbaum and Richard Peddie will both be out of a job. Also, if this does happen, look for an immediate house cleaning as I believe everyone from Upper Management down to players will be replaced as I doubt Schnaider will pay that kind of money for a perrenial 8th Place team.

In any case, it is still coming from Al Strachan and he can barely tell you what a hockey puck is so hopefully no one takes this incredibly seriously.

It should also be noted that MLSE covers 4 professional sports franchises, the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Marlies, Toronto FC and the Toronto Raptors, so if this deal does go through, it’ll affect 4 teams in 3 different sports.

The Score’s link to the very brief article:

20 Responses to MLSE For Sale?

  1. habslife says:

    didnt he want to buy the habs around the same time last year?

  2. markjohnston says:

    MLSE makes over 100 million in profit each and every year for the teacher's pension plan.

    why would they sell it for 1.5 billion, which is only 15 years (or probably less) of profit?

    the pension plan isn't going to die or retire. I'm sure it's quite happy having a pretty much guaranteed 100 million each and every year.

    oh, and as far as they are concerned, MLSE is VERY stable. they care about making money, which the board does for them each and every year…so all those guys are staying and the pension plan is happy…so they're staying.

    that's stability.

    it's not good for us fans, but they don't care.

    it's going to take a lot more than 1.5 billion to get control of MLSE .

  3. habsrock99 says:

    By stability, I meant for the franchise and it's future, not the current ownership, who really only care about the money, the team comes 2nd and the fans come 3rd.

    If the sale of at least the Leafs goes through, it would bring more stability to the franchise as you wouldn't have 20 different opinions of where the team should go.

  4. Pronger44 says:


  5. mojo19 says:

    This would be a great thing for the Leafs. Too bad it won't happen.

  6. bradt says:

    To put it bluntly, your a idiot.

  7. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    MLSE as a corporation is unbuyable. its value goes up so much every year as it swallows more industries. selling would be a foolish move for any investor. they are making bucketloads of dough from the condo's.

    The only option i can see for the team being sold is if an independant investor were to buy the Maple leafs, and Marlies (and maybe other sports teams, Rock, Raptors, FC) from MLSE. even then, the leafs make 22% profit, it wouldn't be a good idea for MLSE to sell. dont see it happening.

  8. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    your comments like this are sad, because when you're not being a big idiot, you make some valid points…sigh

  9. leafy says:

    Clearly, Schnaider wouldn't buy the whole shit all at once.

    Usually, when you're buying an enterprise as big as MLSE, you first buy a portion of it, i.e., Larry Tanenbaum's share for the time being.

    Then at a later time, you could make a move for the Teacher's Pension Fund portion.

    Unless you're the Godfather and you make the owners "an offer they can't refuse".

  10. GolfLeafsGolfHa says:

    It would benefit the Leafs I bet, if I were a Leafs fan I'd be excited, if only it were true and happened already, until that does, this franchise is donebar.

  11. leafy says:

    ***Sundin milestone watch***

    Sundin's next goal will be his 544th, which will tie him with the Rocket for 24th on the all-time list.

  12. tacitus says:

    Or on a more important note the Next Lidstrom point will put him alone in 11th all time defense points as he is currently tied with Scott Stevens

  13. higginsfutureC says:

    Too bad he is still tied for last in stanley cups!

  14. mojo19 says:

    hahaha, I hear Schnaider has some ties to the Russian Mafia

  15. mojo19 says:

    Mats Sundin is absolutely amazing.

    13 More goals to catch Goulet, Ron Francis, and Bucyk putting him in the top 20.

    4 after that to catch Guy Lafleur.

    And if Mats scores 41 goals by the end of the season he'll catch Joe Nieuwendyk for 18th on the all time list.

  16. leafy says:

    There you go.  I would imagine he also talks with a hoarse, cracking voice too like the stereotype Godfather.

  17. leafy says:

    Those are some big names for sure.  He'd be a shoe in for the 600 club if he can stay healthy.

  18. 92-93 says:
    after reading this article, it becomes so much more obvious that the leafs – for the good of the long term health of the franchise – become sellers at the deadline and trade our beloved Mats Sundin.
    obviously, for a guy like JFJ who has a vested interest in this team, its not a clear-cut situation. but for everyone else who will be cheering for this team beyond this year … it is.
    for the love of pete, fire JFJ now, and trade Sundin by the deadline.
    i have never, EVER been happy when my leafs lose. now, i find myself praying and hoping to find them losing in regulation. i hope that this period will be over with soon enough. i hope that the leafs lose all 3 games on their trip and continue to lose IN REGULATION up until the deadline.
  19. 92-93 says:

    another promising article…

    i would love to see a scenario in which Mats goes to Anaheim with contract coming back the other way – likely Doug Weight, a prospect, and Anaheim's (Edmonton's) first rounder coming  back the other way.
    that way, the leafs, if the draft were held today, would select 3rd AND 4th overall. the article suggests Hodgson and Schenn, and i wouldnt disagree with that:
    "4. Edmonton Oilers, GP: 43, Pts: 40: Luke Schenn, D, Kelowna Rockets. Players who are not yet 19 are not supposed to do a heck of a lot at the world junior, but the steady Schenn took a big step forward in most scouts' eyes with a solid performance on Canada's blue line.

    – 5. Toronto Maple Leafs, GP: 42, Pts: 40: Cody Hodgson, C, Brampton Battalion. Sticking to their own backyard would be a smart option for the Leafs, as Hodgson is the type of two-way forward they badly need; already, he has drawn comparisons to Chris Drury."

    I would love to see a guy like Hodgson and a stud defenceman like Schenn be in the toronto organization. they are EXACTLY what the leafs need and if you were to include the prospect from Anaheim (perhaps Logan MacMillan), the leafs prospect depth would be improved overnight.

  20. 92-93 says:

    sorry, one last article that i will provide below … it just makes TOO MUCH SENSE (and its from Steve Simmons of all people!):


    Purely by accident, John Ferguson's mismanagement of the Maple Leafs has put the hockey club in a surprising position of strength to move forward in the future.

    Assuming he isn't making the decisions now — or anymore — the Leafs have a unique opportunity, for a club that has been skating in circles post-lockout, to start over.

    As the Leafs creep slowly toward the bottom of the National Hockey League standings — only two teams have fewer wins — the real possibility of a lottery pick, and maybe even first pick overall in the NHL draft, isn't out of the question.

    The draft pick is nice, but it's only a part of what needs to be done. If this team, in its current structure, is this terrible, then dismantling it over the next six weeks should be the goal for management, which is counter to Ferguson managing to save his job.


    It isn't just about cashing in on Mats Sundin, who continues to insist he doesn't want to be traded.

    The truth is, and for the good of the franchise, Sundin must be convinced to be traded.

    He can choose to sign back in Toronto after the season if he likes. But the Leafs cannot afford to allow the possibility of stockpiling young players and draft picks in exchange for a player who is considerably more valuable at this point than Peter Forsberg.

    If the price of Forsberg going to Nashville or Keith Tkachuk going to Atlanta in rent-a-player moves is an indication, the notion of a contender being able to add a player of Sundin's capabilities is indeed enticing.

    Which, for a moment, brings us back to the dismal Leafs. If Ferguson isn't the GM of the future and isn't much of a GM of the present, should he be the one dealing Sundin? Will he get maximum value? Will he even entertain the subject if it means his certain dismissal? Will he last longer than the board of directors meeting sometime next week?

    And if not Ferguson, then who begins the great Leaf selloff?

    This isn't only about Sundin. It's about cashing in on every possible asset while at the same time opening some salary space, if possible. That is the real difficulty here.

    Because, no matter who gets drafted in June with what pick, there is still $40 million in carry-over contracts to worry about and the not-signed Sundin is not among the $40 million. So it is imperative that between now and the trade deadline, the Leafs begin moving as many contracts as possible, clearing cap and roster space at the same time.

    If Sundin needs to be convinced to be dealt, the same conversation must take place with Darcy Tucker, who is overpaid at $3 million now and barring significant change will be overpaid for the next three seasons also.

    The Leafs have to determine what, if anything, they can get for Tucker.

    It is the same story with Jason Blake, with Pavel Kubina, Mark Bell, Andrew Raycroft and Alexei Ponikarovsky. Blake is signed until 2012. Kubina and Ponikarovsky until 2010. Bell and Raycroft for another season. This is garage sale time. Everything is available for a price.

    (I'd keep Nik Antropov, Vesa Toskala, Tomas Kaberle, Bryan McCabe, whose salary decreases in each of the next two years, and not much else.)

    Bringing in high-end draft picks to a roster that doesn't work accomplishes little. Clearing the deck is mandatory for the Leafs' future. Not only is it possible to come up with a Steven Stamkos or a Drew Doughty from this year's draft, but if the Leafs find enough homes for their veteran players, then a lottery shot at John Tavares or the Swedish Pronger, Victor Hedman, a year from now isn't a bad way to go.

    It all comes back to decision-making, which by itself is problematic. Ferguson's agenda is to stay employed. The best way he can do that is by making the playoffs. But at this date, his personal agenda and the team's future agenda are directly in conflict.

    And all this happening with Ferguson getting occasionally lucky. You see, when he traded for Toskala and Bell last summer, he gave San Jose the option of two different first-round draft picks from the Leafs, last year's pick or this year's pick.

    Doug Wilson, who turned the choice and a trade into Logan Couture, was happy to use the Leafs pick last June. Truth is, he would have been a whole lot happier to have a shot at Stamkos this time around.

    The Leafs now have a shot at a lottery pick. That has to be worth something. What they do with it and what they do around it will determine what kind of team they have for the future.

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