Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Boots faces third lawsuit

A new lawsuit accuses San Jose investor William "Boots" Del Biaggio III of scamming a New York bank out of a $10 million loan so he could buy an interest in the Nashville Predators hockey team.

The suit by Modern Bank of New York... brings to $17 million the amount Del Biaggio is accused of obtaining by using brokerage accounts that weren't his as collateral for loans.

None of the loans has been repaid, according to the lawsuits.
Three lawsuits in the span of a week — although this is the first with a direct link to the financing involved with the NHL franchise.

Boots's wife, Kristin, is named in this suit, although the paper reported last week that the couple have recently separated.

Things aren't well for one of hockey's newest owners.

For the legal minds out there, here's a copy of the Modern Bank suit. If you've got an informed opinion on what's there, by all means, drop me an email.

It was filed late Monday afternoon in California. The bank "notified the Del Biaggios that they were in default" on May 23, but to date has not received a response. "Mr. Del Biaggio's intentional and undoubtedly criminal misconduct also justifies an award of punitive damages," the suit claims.

The loan's outstanding principal and interest, as of May 22, was $10,039,905.55.

A reader over at Tom Benjamin's site seems to have a decent handle on Del Biaggio and offered some damning comments:
The whole hockey nonsense was a real mystery to me. What was Boots Del Biaggio doing investing in a hockey team in Nashville? His friends all thought it was great. I was convinced it was pure unadulterated ego-driven, ponzi-scheme BS. Upon reflection the hockey 'investment' is very consistent with Boots' previous activities. What better than to be a passive investor in a sports franchise 2000 miles away? As such, he is able to maintain his high-profile status as a society VIP and never have to do anything. The only challenge was how to pay for it.
I think we have our answer.

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At 8:22 a.m., June 04, 2008, Anonymous tg said...

Makes you wonder why hockey seems to be the only professional sport that continually has problems with owners and lack of money. I'm thinking about previous owners, or almost owners, of the Oilers and Islanders -- a couple times, who didn't have the money everyone thought they did. The Chapter 11s filed by the Senators, Sabres and Penguins.

I can't imagine something like that happening with any of the other major sports. So does the NHL just not do its due diligence? Is there something about hockey that attracts this type of character? Is NHL ownership/leadership unduly taken by con men?

At 8:31 a.m., June 04, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gary Bettman, ladies and gentleman!

At 9:03 a.m., June 04, 2008, Blogger Me said...

It's a good thing the NHL didn't let that deadbeat Jim Balsillie get a franchise!

At 11:21 a.m., June 04, 2008, Blogger FAUX RUMORS said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 11:22 a.m., June 04, 2008, Blogger FAUX RUMORS said...

1) Moral of the story: Never sell a team to a guy with a nick-name! Boots? Are you kidding? Ya mean he's crooked? What a shock! Where was Sammy 'The Bull'?

At 2:09 p.m., June 04, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He kind of looks like Ryan Seacrest's older brother. Thats a good enough reason not to trust the guy right there!

At 1:52 p.m., June 05, 2008, Blogger Derek from Cloud9 Sports said...

Screw Seacrest, AI would be twice the franchise with Brian Dunkleman at the helm.

During Bettmans' tenure the game has taken a dump, and he's allowed a list of frauds and convicted criminals to have franchises (John Spano, John Rigas, Dennis Kozlowski, and now Samueli and Melnyk, and Boots).

How about we hold him responsible for some of his missteps? I vote new Commish.


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