Devils deny report that they face bankruptcy
NEWARK, N.J. – The minority owners of the New Jersey Devils are finalizing a deal to sell their interest in the NHL team and give managing partner Jeff Vanderbeek some new partners.
The Devils disclosed the potential sale by Brick City LLC in a statement on Monday in which they said a report in the New York Post that the team was facing bankruptcy was inaccurate.
Brick City LLC is the legal name for the Devils share owned by Ray Chambers and Mike Gilfillan, his son-in-law.
Quoting a source, The Post said team missed its Sept. 1 loan payment, giving its lenders a breakaway chance to push the team into bankruptcy. The newspaper also said the team had a bad relationships with its banks.
"The notions that the Devils are facing bankruptcy or that 'the Devils have told their banks to get lost' are patently untrue," the team said in its statement. "The Devils value their relationship with their banks and are confident a refinancing will be completed shortly.
"As stated previously, ownership is close to finalizing an agreement that would lead to a buyout of Brick City's share of the company."
The Devils also disclosed that new season ticket sales are up 130 percent over last year and last week's sale of single-game tickets were up 260 percent compared with a year ago.
Team president and general manager Lou Lamoriello refused to discuss the organization's financial situation.
Devils veterans will report for training camp on Saturday.
Vanderbeek and his partners have been at odds since earlier this year, with Vanderbeek noting they have different visions for the franchise.
Brick City exercised its contractual rights under its partnership agreement with Vanderbeek to cause a sale of the entire team and arena rights to the Prudential Center, subject to certain terms and conditions.
It hired Moag & Co., a Baltimore-based investment bank, to assist in its attempt to sell its share of the team.
Vanderbeek, however, was adamant that he would keep his part of the team.