Blues Supposedly Have Verbal Deal with Matthew Hulsizer
While the majority of St. Louis has their attention turned toward the St. Louis Cardinals and Game 4 of their playoff series, quietly some enormous news about the St. Louis Blues has emerged. Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
reports that the Blues have a verbal agreement in place with Matthew Hulsizer to become the majority stakeholder of the franchise. The deal is believed to be one that might allow Dave Checketts to remain with the organization in some capacity.
While everything is far from being official, Rutherford reports that the alleged deal would make Hulsizer the main investor backing the Blues, leaving the door open for Checketts to still run the franchise.
It's also stated that Hulsizer previously made one offer for the organization, a deal that was turned down. The article indicates that Hulsizer, like most of us, felt the $190 million figure the current group was hunting for was far too high.
Got all that?
To break things down, it sounds like the Blues might actually have some momentum in selling the club. Previously, we had only heard of the Blues supposedly turning down an offer over $160 million which is where we learned the current group was searching for a number near $190 million.
Since then it has been pretty quiet as the preseason ticked by and as we approach the regular season. Now, some huge news breaks.
First things first, it's important to note that nothing here is official let alone final. Rutherford directly reports that his sources state Hulsizer might have filled out some paperwork while another says it has only been a verbal agreement. Either way, at this time, nothing can be deemed official regardless of how solid it might sound.
Secondly, it's worth discussing the aspect of keeping Checketts in his old role. From what I've seen, the public's opinion of Checketts has shifted as the sale of the Blues has plodded along. As each deadline set by Checketts has come and gone with little fruition, the fan base appears to be growing more and more frustrated with how the sale has been conducted. Would it be wise to give him his old role back now that he has become a seller? Something worth thinking about.
Personally, I wouldn't mind seeing Checketts remain on board as a minority investor but I could understand the side that would like to see him depart once a new majority investor is found. If you recall, originally Checketts wanted to remain and find a new majority investor but abandoned that plan believing a new buyer might find the full 100% deal more enticing. This report from Rutherford sounds like the original plan with a new majority investor with Checketts being a minority investor while also handling the operations of the club.
Hulsizer has been thought to be one of the favorites to land the club ever since news broke that the Blues would be for sale. Since then we've seen other parties throw their hat into the ring while Hulsizer has remained on the sidelines. As I've said in nearly every article discussing the team's future owners, the future buyer will move when he/she/they believe the time is right, regardless of any deadline imposed by the current group.
UPDATE - Wednesday, 9:45pm:
Andy Strickland reports
that his sources state that Matthew Hulsizer is "stunned" by today's report and that no definitive deal has been reached. Strickland goes on to report that Hulsizer believes there's a lot of work to be done.
However, just a couple paragraphs below this statement, Strickland also mentions that another source confirms that the two sides have conceptually agreed to a deal matching today's earlier report.
It appears that all these "sources" need to get their stories straight. At the VERY least, we can take away that 1) Hulsizer is indeed interested and 2) the two sides are talking. Whether or not the two sides have agreed on a deal or on their way to reaching a deal is yet to be seen.