Bid to buy Canucks bogged down over Olympic revenues, former partner says

But Tom Gaglardi told a B.C. Supreme Court civil trial today that had he known Orca Bay’s deal on Oct. 30, 2004, was the final offer, he and his partner would have jumped at the chance to own the NHL team.

Gaglardi is testifying in a case that pits him and his partner Ryan Beddie against a former business partner, Francesco Aquilini.

They allege he used his insider knowledge of their attempts to buy the team to undercut their bid and get a piece of the action on his own.

Aquilini denies he’s done anything wrong.

Gaglardi told the judge today that a series of negotiations between his team and Orca Bay, the former owner of the Canucks, bogged down over the company’s insistence they get half of the revenues from the 2010 Olympic Games.

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The demand came as they hammered out agreements on other areas like salary caps, signing bonuses and existing sponsorship deals with the franchise.

Gaglardi says that since he and his partner would have been full owners of the team and its home of GM Place by the time the Olympics arrived in Vancouver, the clause came as a surprise.