The New Jersey Devils Are Sold To New Owners
The New Jersey Devils, parent club of the hometown Albany Devils finally have a buyer and with that optimism they can escape the red ink that has overtaken the franchise.
The Devils announce the club has been sold to a pair of businessmen, David Blitzer and Joshua Harris.
The pair have bought controlling interest of the club from Jeffrey Vanderbeek. Vanderbeek will stay on for now as an adviser to the new ownership pair.
Scott O’Neil, chief operating officer of the Philadelphia 76ers NBA club, will also oversee the business operations of the Devils. O’Neil was previously president of Madison Square Garden Sports and oversaw 3 teams. Hockey’s New York Rangers. The New York Knicks of the NBA. In addition he ran the WNBA’s New York Liberty.
The Devils, despite their new arena, the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, have been swimming in red ink, even to the point the NHL considered taking over running the franchise, as they have done previously with the Phoenix Coyotes.
Blitzer is from New Jersey. The team, in making the transaction public have announced that long time GM/President Lou Lamoriello will remain with the club in his role overseeing the day to day operations of the hockey club.
Lamoriello said of his new bosses ” I have had time over the past week to spend a lot of time with David Blitzer and Joshua Harris. There is no question of the commitment to the fans to create the best possible in game experience, their commitment to winning and to bringing the Stanley Cup back to the fans of New Jersey.”
Of course the Devils face some rough times. Their legendary goal tender Martin Brodeur looks as if he will be retiring after this season and their leading scorer, Ilya Kovalchuk opted out of his Devils contract to return to his native Russia to play there.