We might finally be at the end of the Thrashers-to-Winnipeg drama.
According to Sportsnet in Canada, the deal to relocate the franchise will likely be announced on Tuesday, a day before the Stanley Cup Final gets going. If there is no announcement on Tuesday, however, the chances of it being made public during the Finals aren't great. Gary Bettman would have zero interest in any news overshadowing the biggest series of the hockey schedule. But perhaps it could be announced on an off-day. It's not ideal, but then again the possible move will still be hanging over the NHL regardless.
Per TSN's Bob McKenzie, the lawyers representing the group from True North Sports have signed off on the deal, so they're just waiting on the Atlanta lawyers to do the same.
NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly told the Associates Press he couldn't say if the sale could be announced as soon as Tuesday, but "It's certainly possible something will be finalized this week."
Of course, the deal would still have to be approved, but with the way NHL officials have been talking about the Atlanta relocation issue, you have to imagine it would be smooth sailing to acceptance.
All along the people in Atlanta have been hopeful they could keep the Thrashers in town, but it's looked less and less likely by the day. There just hasn't been a bidder that has come forth who was able to offer what True North can.
-- Brian Stubits