The Senators Have Sold for a Record Breaking Price!

It was announced on Tuesday that the group led by Michael Andlauer purchased the Ottawa Senators for a $950 million.[1] The record setting price tag eclipsed the previous highmark of $900 million, set when the Pittsburgh Penguins sold in 2021.[2]

The team was put up for sale by the Melnyk family after the death of Eugene Melnyk in November 2022. Andlauer was one of the first potential candidates to be named in the purchase of the team.[3] Snoop Dogg, Ryan Reynolds, and The Weeknd were among other notable names interested in purchasing the team.[4] Andlauer ultimately won the bid, gaining operational control and ownership over 90 percent of the club.[5] The agreement provides that a 10 percent stake in the club remains with the Melnyk family’s estate.[6]

Some have speculated that the NHL was especially comfortable with Andlauer’s purchase, as he has been a minority owner of the Montreal Canadiens since 2009.[7] Since Andlauer has a history of doing business with the NHL, the league finds more comfort in continuing to do business with him, rather than engaging in business with an unknown investor. Andlauer will have to sell his stake in the Canadiens franchise to assume his role as owner of the Senators.[8]

Andlauer’s passion for hockey extends beyond his minority stake in the Canadiens. He owned the Hamilton Bulldogs (now the Laval Rocket) from 2003 to 2015, before he sold them to the Canadiens.[9] However, that same year, Andlauer purchased the Belleville Bulls of the OHL and moved them to Hamilton, Ontario, renaming them the Bulldogs.[10] The club is relocating for the year due to arena renovations and will play in Brantford, Ontario as the Brantford Bulldogs.[11] There is no conflict with Andlauer’s ownership of the Senators and the Bulldogs, so he will be at the top of both organizations.

As late as May, reports speculated if Andlauer would succeed in purchasing the Senators, as it was believed he only thought the team was worth $800 to $850 million.[12] No one was sure how far above these estimates Andlauer would go, but the $950 million bid did not scare him off.[13]

The sale is still pending approval from the NHL Board of Governors, but pending this approval and the sale of Andlauer’s shares of the Montreal Canadiens, he will take over the helm for the 2023-2024 NHL season. Since the Board of Governors has had a positive relationship with Andlauer in the past, it is likely his bid to own the Senators will be approved.


[2] Id.

[3] Id.


[5] Supra n.1.

[6] Id.

[7] Id.

[8] Id.

[9] Id.

[10] Id.



[13] Id.

[Photo] Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

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