Preds may have local bid in hand

Tuesday, July 3, 2007 at 6:11pm

An attorney for a group of local investors working to buy the Nashville Predators franchise says he can’t comment due to “confidentiality limitations,” but rumors abounded Tuesday about the possibility that a group of Nashvillians, including David Freeman and Herb Frich, may have made a bid for the team.

According to a statement from Freeman, formerly head of Commodore Medical Supply, the investors’ negotiations are “confidential.”

“In deference to the [team]’s request, we will be unable to offer any further public information or comment regarding our bid until a binding agreement is in place,” Freeman said.

Gerry Helper, spokesperson for the Predators, said Tuesday the franchise would not comment, “until and unless we have a binding agreement in place.”

“We’re certainly not going to comment on rumors and speculation,” Helper added.

Chase Cole of Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis said last week that a proposal could be ready for presentation to current owner Craig Leipold within days. There are reports that the bid may include the need to borrow funds to meet an asking price Leipold would find attractive.

“We are looking at a number of different financing possibilities,” Cole said in a previous City Paper interview.

Prospective buyer Jim Balsillie, who has taken actions that would indicate intentions of moving the team to Canada, has said he would be interested in working with a group willing to assume minority ownership, as has current owner Leipold. Cole declined to comment on whether or not the group of local investors is working to acquire full or partial ownership.

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