Halifax Mooseheads majority owner Bobby Smith sells QMJHL team to American Sam Simon

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The Halifax Mooseheads hockey team is getting a new majority owner. After 20 years of ownership, current majority owner and former Montreal Canadiens forward Bobby Smith announced during a news conference Tuesday that he is selling the team to American businessman and investor Sam Simon.“Every season has been enjoyable, to watch these young players improve, form lifelong friendships, and reach their potentials,” said Smith, who was born in North Sydney and grew up in Ottawa.Simon, the founder, chairman and owner of Michigan-based Simon Group Holdings, said Tuesday that Smith will “be with me for a few more years” to help with the transition.“He’s going to have to help us a little bit, guide us along, show us around,” Simon said. Story continues below advertisement Sam Simon takes over ownership of @HFXMooseheads from Bobby Smith.Simon, CEO of Simon Group Holdings, says Smith will help with transition period.Smith has been majority owner since 2003. pic.twitter.com/WbXTYiPMQL— Callum Smith (@smithc902) February 21, 2023“This is not my team. It’s the community team, so I want to make sure I will be a good steward for everyone here.”During a scrum following the announcement, Simon said he and his family “fell in love” with Halifax.“The people, the fans, the community … you guys have a beautiful place,” he said. “The Mooseheads, everybody loves it, and it’s a community team.” Trending Now Simon, who founded sports investment firm Simon Sports with his son Peter last year, said it was “always a dream” to own a sports franchise.“We’ve been looking for a good team, we were looking at at least four teams before we came in here,” he said. Story continues below advertisement “This is not my team, this is the community’s team.” – new owner of the @HFXMooseheads Sam Simon thanks Halifax for the warm welcome. pic.twitter.com/pTc7in9dXi— Scotiabank Centre (@ScotiabankCtr) February 21, 2023With the purchase, Simon said they will own close to 85 per cent of the team. He declined to disclose the sale price.Simon said he is Armenian and his family immigrated to Detroit from Lebanon in the early 1970s.Simon’s son, Peter, said they will be travelling “back and forth” to ensure they remain visible in Halifax.“We want to be part of the community, not just the Halifax Mooseheads,” he said.‘It’s time’Smith, who became majority owner of the Mooseheads in 2003, told reporters he sold the team because “it’s been 20 years.” Story continues below advertisement “I wasn’t going to own the team forever,” he said. “When a good buyer presented himself … I realized this guy was going to be a real asset to the team.“We’ve implemented all of my good ideas. It’s time for a new set of eyes.”Celebrating a huge day in the history of the Halifax Mooseheads. Join us in welcoming Sam Simon & family and a big thank you to Bobby Smith & family for the legacy built in Moose Country. #GoMooseGo pic.twitter.com/D6QY17nDpH— Halifax Mooseheads (@HFXMooseheads) February 21, 2023Brian Urquhart, president of the Halifax Mooseheads, said it was a “historic day” for the team.“It’s sad, to a certain extent, from staff that have been with (Smith) for a long time, but then it’s also a chance to welcome the Simon family to the ownership,” he said.“We’re really excited about what lies ahead.” &copy 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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