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Three new bidders submit offers to own NHL's Blues

Dave Naylor

7/13/2011 12:32:22 AM

If Matthew Hulsizer wants to become owner of the NHL's St. Louis Blues, it appears he is going to have some competition.

Interest in the Blues has picked up, according to a source close to the sale, with three new bidders submitting offers for the team over the past several weeks.

Those bids join one from Hulsizer and as well as from Tom Stillman, who is the minority partner of current owner Dave Checketts.
 
It is believed some of the recent interest has come from prospective buyers who were interested in the Dallas Stars franchise, which is expected to be sold to Vancouver businessman Tom Gaglardi.

While the three additional bidders for the Blues remain anonymous, the source said the sale is expected to fetch in excess of the US$190 million paid by Terry Pegula for the Buffalo Sabres this past season.

The sale of the Blues franchise, which was purchased by Checketts for $150 million in 2006, could be completed over the next several weeks.

Checketts confirmed last week that he has been given an extension on a $120 million loan used to finance his purchase of the team, in order to complete a sale before the start of the coming season.

The Blues, which were valued by Forbes Magazine last fall at US$165 million, have missed the playoffs in all but one of six seasons since the lockout that wiped-out the 2004-05 season.