ATHENS (Lighthouse Press) _ Embroiled in financial troubles and facing an $85 billion buyout from other European countries, Greece is expected to try fixing its problems by buying a majority stake in the NHL's constantly financially troubled Arizona Coyotes, according to a scathing report by TSN's Rick Westhead.
The Greek Parliament will vote Wednesday on a controversial resolution that would authorize the $200 million purchase of the team, per Westhead's report. Should the resolution pass, Greece would then require approval from eurozone leaders, the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund, NHL Board of Governors, INTERPOL and ultimately the Glendale City Council before finalizing the deal. None are expected to block the sale.
"The deal is as good as done," a source at the IMF told Westhead. "Greece feels that buying the Coyotes is the kind of bold move it needs to make to get back on its feet. And Glendale thinks Greece would be a good partner to have in an arena tenant."
Greece is believed to be the first European country to purchase a North American hockey team, but its current status as an insolvent and literally penniless entity won't scare off the NHL.
"The league has been here before," a source told Westhead. "Having no money has never stopped anyone from buying a hockey team in the past. You get the right people to sign off on it and you're good to go."
Money-related turmoil is nothing new for either party. Both have endured decades of financial mismanagement and hidden debts that have created almost insurmountable deficits. Both have survived thanks in large part to payouts from conflicted third parties that may be ready to sever ties looking out for their own survival. Greece has considered dumping the euro and the Coyotes have been dogged by relocation rumors for years, sparking protests and demonstrations by citizens who love them.
Many influential parties feel the timing is perfect for some drastic measures to save both the beleaguered Coyotes and the beggared Greeks.
"We need to do what's right for Glendale," said a spokesperson for Mayor Ian Hugh. "That could mean breaking our lease with the Coyotes and giving that money back to the people or helping the team get sold to a flat broke country whose only coins of value are thousands of years old and on display at the Numismatic Museum of Athens. Anything and everything is on the table."
According to Westhead, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is focused on buying the Coyotes and making them a hockey success story in a desert located 7,000 miles away from his country.
"Tsipras will not abandon ship," the IMF source said. "He is determined to prove that ice hockey can work in Arizona and financial restraint can work in Greece."
E-mails to the NHL, the Coyotes and Parthenon went unanswered.
Should the deal fall through, Westhead believes Greece could attempt to buy the Pittsburgh Penguins or possibly purchase an NHL expansion team in either Las Vegas, Seattle, Quebec City or Crete.
THIS IS INCREDIBLY FAKE. It is not real. We do this sort of thing regularly. Greece buying the Coyotes could cause all of the currency in the world to explode simultaneously.