NHL approves sale of 50 percent of Canucks
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- Vancouver businessman Francesco Aquilini's purchase of 50 percent of the Vancouver Canucks has been completed.
Last week the NHL's board of governors approved the deal, which was first announced in November. But Stan McCammon, chief executive officer for Orca Bay Sports and Entertainment, said some loose ends needed to be cleared up before it was finalized.
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Aquilini, who has been a Canucks season-ticket holder for 15 years, is buying half the team from Seattle businessman John McCaw.
"I grew up cheering for the Canucks and I look forward to my responsibility to contribute and help grow this great franchise both on the ice and in the community. I am very proud to be a local owner," Aquilini said on Thursday in a release.
The Canucks are currently involved in two lawsuits. Local businessmen Ryan Beedie and Tom Gaglardi filed a statement of claim in January, alleging McCaw and Aquilini acted in bad faith and disregarded legal agreements when they completed their deal.
Aquilini denies the allegations.
The Canucks owners, players Todd Bertuzzi and Brad May, plus coach Marc Crawford and former general manager Brian Burke are also named in a lawsuit filed by former Colorado Avalanche forward Steve Moore.
Moore, now a free agent, sustained a broken neck, concussion and facial injuries after Bertuzzi punched him in a game last March at GM Place. His ice hockey career remains in doubt.
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