PHOENIX --- A bankruptcy judge has rejected both bids to buy the Phoenix Coyotes.
Judge Redfield T. Baum turned down the offers of Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie and the NHL in a 31-page ruling on Wednesday.
However, he left the door open for the NHL to buy the team if it amends its offer.
The ruling comes on the eve of the start of the NHL season after nearly five months of often bitter legal wrangling between Balsillie and the league.
Coyotes owner Jerry Moyes took the team into Chapter 11 on May 5 with a plan to sell to Balsillie, contingent on moving the franchise to Hamilton, Ontario, over the NHL's vehement objections.