Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Eric Lapointe Says His Group Could Return to Alouettes' Ownership Picture

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Eric Lapointe Says His Group Could Return to Alouettes' Ownership Picture

Article excerpt

Lapointe group could return to hunt for Als

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Eric Lapointe's group remains out of the Montreal Alouettes ownership picture, but could re-emerge with a simple telephone call.

The former Hec Crighton Trophy winner announced April 6 his potential investors had decided against purchasing the Alouettes. Just three weeks earlier, Lapointe said he was simply a phone call away from quickly assembling a potential ownership group to buy the troubled franchise but that call never came.

There were reports Monday that Lapointe's group was back in the Als' ownership picture, a claim Lapointe denied. However, the 44-year-old native of Brossard, Que., reiterated he could quickly re-assemble his investors if called upon.

"There's no being back in the picture because I don't have anything," Lapointe said in a telephone interview. "I could be in . . . I don't see why I'd say no (if either CFL or Als came calling).

"I'll never say no to anything. Why say never when it could be something that could be done for the community? I went out for the reason that I needed to do it but so far there's been no offer, no confirmation from the team and from the league that the league actually bought it."

The CFL has steadfastly maintained that American businessman Robert Wetenhall continues to own and operate the Alouettes. However, there are persistent reports the league has assumed control of the franchise and will broker any potential purchase agreement for the team.

So far, Montreal businessman Clifford Starke has been the only individual to publicly state his interest in purchasing the Alouettes, doing so formally in a statement Thursday. However, there are reports another two additional potential groups also exist.

Starke, 35, grew up attending Alouettes games when they were among the CFL's best teams. On Saturday, Starke told The Canadian Press communication with the CFL has already begun and that he and his partners could assume ownership of the franchise as early as this season. …

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