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Hamilton, Balsillie officials discuss long-term arena deal if Coyotes move

HAMILTON, Ont. – Representatives of Jim Balsillie and Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger met Thursday to discuss a Copps Coliseum deal.

Balsillie is hoping to buy the bankrupt Phoenix Coyotes and move the NHL team to Hamilton.

Eisenberger says the city is only interested in a long-term agreement in exchange for exclusive hockey use of the arena.

He says the arena needs upgrades, including private boxes, that would cost about $100 million – and it would be up to Balsillie to come up with the money.

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Balsillie had previously said he would be prepared to spend up to $160 million as a longer-term project to revamp Copps.

Eisenberger says he expects to come up with a framework agreement within the next week or two to present to council.