The beer battle over who’s the official beer sponsor of the NHL may finally be coming to an end. The Toronto Star reports that the latest ruling will make it very difficult for Labatt to make any more appeals. From the article -
Ontario Superior Court Geoffrey Morawetz released his written reasons late Monday for ruling against Labatt’s claim the NHL shouldn’t have been allowed to sign a $375-million North American sponsorship deal with Molson-Coors. Labatt had claimed it already had a three-year deal for Canadian rights.
Instead, Morawetz wrote that Labatt didn’t have a deal, and that the NHL hadn’t extended Labatt’s exclusive negotiating window beyond Oct. 22.
“In part, Labatt fell victim to its own reluctance to unequivocally commit itself to an enforceable contractual arrangement,” Morawetz wrote. His decision was originally announced Oct. 6, but he only released his written reasons Monday.
“The NHL twice extended the exclusive negotiating period. … Both extensions were provided in writing. … It is also clear that no further requests for extension to the exclusive negotiating period were made by Labatt, and none were offered by the NHL,” Morawetz wrote. “The mere fact that the parties continued to negotiate beyond Oct. 22, 2010, does not, in my view, reflect an ongoing legal obligation to do so.”