There’ve been lots of rumors circulating regarding the Thrashers – most of which just have to do with our status as an “unsuccessful” Southern team that needs to come home to Canada (see: Thrashers to Winnipeg BS). A very good amount of these rumors do not extend south of the Canadian border, and most of them wind up with more horrific fates than the Phoenix Coyotes’ worst nightmare.
It’s no surprise that Atlanta Spirit has been looking for new investors for quite a while. Heck, they even hired evil Wall Street business (/sarc, but only kind of) Goldman Sachs to help them look for new ones a year ago. Good on them. Find new investors that actually recognize that there’s a sport played in Atlanta that you own who don’t badmouth their own fans and generally act like spoiled 3 year olds. Please, do, find new investors that want us to succeed, not wait for every sign of failure before making moves that help the hockey product. Wait… a new GM? Sure! It’s been 10 years? Better late than never! Oh, and our hotshot new coach had the strength and resolve of a pincushion? Yeah! Let’s fire him after our top prospects regress and our team manages to not make the playoffs in a season where there is no reason they couldn’t've! Wait… we do this a few years after we can a Stanley Cup winning coach off to an awful start with no accountability to the team? Makes perfect sense to us.
Enter Stephen Rollins and Lightning Pictures. Who the heck are these guys? Darn good question. After some poking around, all that I found was this website detailing Lightning Pictures’ production company. Not exactly mind-blowing HTML, but if they have enough spare dough to buy a hockey team, that could be fixed at a fairly small price (raises hand). Anywho, the gentleman in charge of this venture seems to be the one who started the petition to get the league back in Atlanta in the first place, so heck, why not? He seems dedicated as does his investment backing… and the fans have been crying bloody murder for new ownership that notiices the Thrashers exist – not just the Hawks.
Any information on this will be (of course) relayed here as it develops… who knows if this’d pan out. The Thrashers and Hawks seem to be a package deal, and the sponsorship of Philips is contingent on both teams staying put, so that willl be a hurdle to anyone who feels the need to invest in a team around these parts.
BTW, and I was remiss to not mention this yesterday, but these could probably be new investors rather than owners. Nothing’s actually clear at this point.