The new trend of stadium ransom hitting the sports world could now affect one of the NHL’s Canadian teams.
You probably remember Brian Burke! His time as president GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs went….okay. After being canned by the Leafs, Burke went to the Calgary Flames, where he currently holds the position of president of hockey operations (akin to the Toronto’s Brendan Shanahan).
In a recent interview, Burke was blunt about wanting a new arena to replace the aging Saddledome:
“We still have a building that was built in 1983, the oldest in the league by more than 10 years.” – Brian Burke via Canadian Press
If the city of Calgary doesn’t put forward plans for a venue to replace the Saddledome, Burke was blunt about the team’s future:
“We’re not going to make the threat to leave. We’ll just leave,[…] You don’t think we could find a place to go? With a straight face you’re saying that. Let’s see. Quebec. Oh yeah, they have a brand-new building that meets NHL standards” – Brian Burke to Chris McCrae
Burke is referring to the NHL-sized arena recently built in Quebec City, which was part of the city’s bid for an NHL expansion team just over a year ago.
The Mayor of Calgary has already responded to Burke’s comments, saying he will not allow his city’s team to move and he has no interest in negotiating to do so.