Nashville Owner Claws Canadian Press
In an article in the Nashville City Paper, Predators owner Craig Leipold takes a swipe at the contraction and relocation rumors that constantly dog the PredatorsBy Mark McGee, Sports Correspondent
July 29, 2005
“CP: Not to dwell on the negative, but how frustrating was it to constantly have the Predators mentioned as a team that might be lost because of possible contraction when you were involved in almost all of the meetings?
Leipold: Canadian reporters were always talking about it. All of the bad raps against us are contributed to somebody in a Canadian market. Let’s face it. Canada is still upset that Nashville has a hockey team. That’s just the way it is, and we have to live with that. Logic, common sense says I would not be on the executive committee, the audit committee or the negotiating committee if anybody was thinking that Nashville would be contracted. It was never discussed. It was a non-possibility. It was frustrating because I know where ground zero of where those rumors always started. If the sun shines, you can’t have hockey. I’m a little bitter about that. I’m tired of hearing about it. Dallas is accepted as an NHL franchise. They are successful on the ice with a good program. That is what we are trying to do here. San Jose is not discussed. Tampa Bay won the Stanley Cup. I think there will be stability in that market. Once we have some winning seasons and the fans stay with us like they did the first couple of years this market is going to be one of the best in the National Hockey League. “
I have to agree that when posting about the team it seems there is a lack of respect for the location of the team that has nothing to do with the solid ownership, and the team taking a consevative and calculated building program based around drafting rather than free spending. The team is poised to make some solid moves to go further in the playoffs than the last run, and is positioned well to be active in the free agent market.
I am interested in response to the above quote, and opinions on the franchise based on what it actually has done to position itself for the future.