Move over, Francesco Aquilini and Tom Gaglardi. With this week’s sale of the Phoenix Coyotes there are now three B.C. ownership connections in the National Hockey League.
Bill Dutton, born in Virden, Man., but now a resident of Qualicum Beach and owner of the Pheasant Glen Golf Resort on Vancouver Island, is part of the Renaissance Sports and Entertainment (RSE) group that purchased the Coyotes from the NHL. Dutton, 80, is a former president and general manager of the Estevan Bruins and once managed the rink in Virden. His uncle was Red Dutton, who played, coached, managed and owned the NHL New York Americans in the early 1940s.
“I’ve already got Coyotes’ stickers on my golf cart,” Dutton told The Parksville Qualicum Beach News. RSE is comprised of primarily Canadian businessmen now in partnership with Global Spectrum, owners of the Philadelphia Flyers.
HERE ‘N’ THERE: Defenceman Keith Ballard didn’t get much of a send-off from the Canucks after three years with the club.
A two-sentence media release read: “The Vancouver Canucks have elected to use a compliance buyout on Keith Ballard’s contract. We thank Keith for his contributions while in Vancouver and wish him all the best moving forward.” It was signed: Canucks Sports & Entertainment.
Mind you, having to pay Ballard roughly $5.6 million over the next four years might have been considered by the Canucks enough of a fond farewell.
SHORT HOPS: Jim Robson was 17 years old when he walked into radio station CJAV in Port Alberni to begin a broadcasting career that eventually led to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
This weekend marks the 20th anniversary of the Alberni Valley Charity Golf Classic in support of the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation as well as several other local charities in the Alberni Valley. Fittingly enough, Robson will be front and centre as the tournament’s honoured guest …
Former NHL sniper Bobby Schmautz was chosen as the first Canuck Alumni ‘official host” on the 65th anniversary of the Cyclone Taylor Golf Classic Wednesday at Richmond Golf Club.
On behalf of the BC Hockey Benevolent Association, Schmautz and Gerry Sillers — president of the Alumni — presented a cheque for $75,000 to Canuck Place in Abbotsford. Don McCusker, battling ALS, is the son of former Canucks’ star Bob. Don raised $26,000 with his Golfathon for ALS at Vancouver Club. He and his brothers Rob and Steve and five CPGA pros played from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., completing 365 combined holes.
END ZONE: The Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame is loaded with builders, players and teams from B.C. and more will be added Nov. 9 at the Burnaby Firefighter’s Club. Ron Crosato (Delta), Dwight Maetche (Coquitlam), Larry Henry (Tsawwassen), Doug Deschner (Kelowna) as well as the 1958, 1959 and 1962 New Westminster Salmonbellies are among the latest inductees.
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