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Locals to sign for Preds tomorrow?

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The Tennessean is reporting this afternoon that the local group of businessmen seeking to purchase the Nashville Predators plan on signing a Letter of Intent on Wednesday, giving them a window of exclusive negotiating opportunity with current owner Craig Leipold, and is a preliminary step towards them putting hard cash on the table around the middle of August.

This would basically be the same step that Jim Balsillie took with Leipold back in May when this whole drama got rolling, but since the local group plans to make every effort to make this team successful in Nashville, there wouldn't seem to be any extraordinary obstacles to overcome in closing this deal, outside of the usual due diligence that takes place in any such transaction.

Combine this with encouraging reports from the Nashville Post regarding the season-ticket push (over 8,400 and counting two months before the start of the season), and the fact that the "Our Team Nashville" coalition is only just mobilizing their efforts in the corporate community, and it looks like this summer of worry and fear for Nashville hockey fans might have a more hopeful conclusion. The best case scenario would have ownership change hands around the start of the season, so GM David Poile can have a clear salary mandate and scan the trading landscape right away. Since the team is already positioned right around the salary cap minimum, any infusion of operating capital would mean the opportunity to add a difference-making player to an already-competitive lineup.