Thrashers' ownership search has no end in sight

ATLANTA (AP) - Thrashers president Don Waddell understands that local NHL fans want to know something definite about the team's future in Atlanta.

A few minutes after his team missed the playoffs for the 10th time in their 11-year history, Waddell, the Thrashers' general manager from 1999-2010, says the search for new ownership is nowhere near over.

"It's been a work in progress," Waddell said. "We're certainly going to continue to move forward and do everything possible to keep this team in Atlanta."

The Atlanta Spirit, a group that owns the Thrashers, NBA Atlanta Hawks and Philips Arena, has sought to sell the NHL franchise for several years and claims the hockey club has lost over $150 million since 2005.

"We've had lots of people interested," Waddell said. "We've had a couple of people move to the next step. Nothing is close at all."

Team captain Andrew Ladd, who just finished his first season with the Thrashers after helping the Chicago Blackhawks win the Stanley Cup last year, wants new ownership to keep the club in Atlanta.

"Hopefully they can get it figured out and the team can stay here," Ladd said.