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Allison Said:

Can you help me with some home equity and mortgage questions I have?

We Answered:

I would suggest you re-finance your current house to pay off all creditors. With those payments out of the way, you should be able to keep up with your bills. This will greatly help your credit score and in a year or so, then you can look at selling your home and buying a better one.

For a $1,000/month payment, assuming a 4% interest rate and 30 year amortization, you can get a mortgage of about $210,000 - so you would need to put $90,000 down on a $300,000 home.

Allison Said:

William "Boots" Del Biaggio III charged with fraud........?

We Answered:

First of all, Bettman and del Baggio are NOT friends

Second, del Biaggio was introduced to the NHL through the owners of the San Jose Sharks (to whom he alledgedly lend several million dollars to and was given an equity stake) and the multi-billionaire owner of the Los Angeles Kings, Philip Anschutz.

Anschutz also happens to own the arena in Kansas City and in the past, he has strongly suggested to the NHL and it's governors that there should be a franchise in that arena. He has also strongly suggested that his personal friend (del Biaggio) be the owner of that team.

Let's move ahead.

After Balsillie failed to make his retaining deposit on the the Predators, Leipold called the deal off. BUT, he still needed money, and needed to sell the team (it is now known that Leipold had already entered negotiations to buy the Wild by that time). With San Jose 'financially solid', Anschutz mentioned to Bettman that del Biaggio would be willing to 'help' Nashville out if Bettman/Hotchkiss (Cgy owner) could negotiate a settlement with the Sharks. This was done.

Bettman then turned the tables on Anschutz AFTER the Predators deal was tentatively signed by requiring del Baggio to withdraw from any potential ownership of the Kansas City franchise. del Baggio agreed (probably because he knew he had no money) but Anschutz was angered.

It should be noted as part of this investigation, Anschutz, the San Jose ownership group, the NHL, and the Predators ownership group ALL found del Biaggio to be what he described himself as. People like to say the NHL didn't do it's due diligence, but it turns out that del Biaggio hid things well, and had his 'image' in order. It turns out that his errors made by his family owned bank led to the SEC investigation which is what started unravelling things. Without that error, no one ever would have been the wiser.

Unfortunately when looking at the Spano transaction on the Island (Bettman), the original ownership group of the Senators (Ziegler), the Baldwin ownerships (San Jose, Pittsburgh, Hartford - all under Ziegler), Bruce McNall (Ziegler), and Charlie Finley (Campbell) - the NHL has a long list of shady owners. Throw into that Bill Hunter (Blues to Saskatoon) and Nelson Skalbania (bought the Flames simply to make a profit to cover other debts) and one no longer has to wonder why the NHL fails to get respect in some corners of North America.

To add your last Balsillie comment
The Government of Canada investigated the NHL's dealings with Balsillie
1. Pittsburgh Penguins.
- the Canadian government found no wrong doing on the NHL's part. They had unainamously approved the sale of the Penguins to Balsillie. However, Mario Lemieux chose to add several conditions to the sale which Balsillie balked at. This had nothing to do with the NHL, and was well within Lemieux's rights as the franchise owner.

2. Nashville Predators
- the Canadian government found no wrong doing on the part of the NHL, and DID find wrong doing on the part of James Balsillie. Balsillie twice missed a retaining deposit deadline to Leipold. After the second miss, Leipold informed the NHL that he had scuttled the deal and the NHL was no longer being asked to vote on it. Also, the goverment of Canada determined that Balsillie was worth significantly less than he claimed (keeping in mind that in order for Balsillie to fight this claim, it would cost him money because his tax bill would increase).

Gary Bettman and Bill Daly claim they have nothing against Balsillie. The owners on the other hand do. Any franchise moved to a potential expansion location costs them money. An expansion franchise in any city will net each owner about $30MM. If one of these cities obtains a franchise through re-location, then the owners lose that money, because the city it came from ceases to be a possible franchise location.

In the case of Hamilton, only people in Southern Ontario consider it a strong franchise possibility. Nobody in the NHL sees it that way due to it's proximity to both Toronto and Buffalo which will have have their lawyers waiting to bankrupt the team in territorial rights fees before it even starts (and Wayne Gretzky made mention of this fact when he addressed the Economic Club of Canada earlier this fall).

del Biaggio never had a financial interest in more than one team. He lent the Sharks consortium money a few years ago, in return, he was given an equity stake in the team. I'm not sure whether his relationship with Anschutz was personal or professional, but I don't believe he lent Anschutz any money for the Kings, especially considering Anschutz is a multi-billionaire and del Biaggio was only a multi-millionaire (albeit a reputed few hundred millions). It was however Anschutz who suggested to George Gund III and Kevin Compton that del Biaggio could help out their consortium financially.

When the Predators situation came up, he was able to cash out his San Jose stake due to the financial improvements in the organization (and the help of Hotchkiss and a couple of other NHL governors), and use that money to get a minority stake in the Predators.

Similarly, had the Kansas City issue seen the light of day while he was with the Sharks (or the Predators), he would have been forced to cash out with the current team before a regular season game was played.

As you mentioned, there have been examples of this in the past - and let us not forget.....Jimmy Devallano owns %0.001% of the Detroit Red Wings (a present from Ilitch in the late 80s) as well as a similar interest in the Toronto Maple Leafs (Devallano was a shareholder in MLG Enterprises and when Stavro took the company private, Devallano refused to tender his shares and on the FAN 590 in late October/Early November (before my father's death anyway) Devallano told Norm Rumack that he still has the shares, they are still legal, and that he has also owned season tickets to the Leafs since 1957 (although other family members use them).

Arlene Said:

Interesting facts part 1......please rate?

We Answered:

You always have such neat facts. Your Ad Here

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