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Jim Balsillie never told newspaper that the Montreal Canadiens were for sale

NHL.com @NHL

MONTREAL - Jim Balsillie denies telling a French-language newspaper that the Montreal Canadiens are for sale.

Balsillie's spokesman says the head of BlackBerry maker Research in Motion was in shock when he heard about the story that appeared in today's edition of Montreal La Presse.

Toronto lawyer Richard Rodier tells The Canadian Press that Balsillie was quick to send an apology to Montreal Canadiens owner George Gillett.

Gillett and NHL commissioner Gary Bettman both denied the club was for sale.

Rodier says Balsillie and Gillett have met on a number of occasions but there were no discussions about the sale of the hockey club.

Balsillie has been trying to buy an NHL franchise in recent years but has been unsuccessful in his pursuits.

Rodier says Balsillie still has designs on a franchise.

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