The Nanaimo Clippers in action at Frank Crane Arena in early 2020. (News Bulletin file photo)

The Nanaimo Clippers in action at Frank Crane Arena in early 2020. (News Bulletin file photo)

Nanaimo Clippers for sale, owner says hockey won’t be back to normal any time soon

Wes Mussio says he’s had numerous inquiries about the junior A club already

BCHL hockey is a long way from what it was a year ago, and the Nanaimo Clippers owner can’t wait any longer.

Wes Mussio announced Saturday that the Clippers junior A hockey club is now for sale, posting the news on Facebook and mentioning a lack of support from the provincial government for the BCHL and its franchises.

“It has nothing to do with criticizing Bonnie Henry or the provincial government for lack of funding, it has everything to do with putting out a rationale behind the reason [for selling],” said Mussio.

He hopes that spreading the news that the team is for sale will help lead to better offers, and said he’s had “close to a dozen” inquiries already, with people figuring it’s a fire sale and they can buy low.

Mussio said he promised his wife at the start of the pandemic that he would reassess the hockey club’s situation after a year, and said he doesn’t see a chance of hockey returning as normal, this year, next year, and maybe not even the year after that. He said without fans watching the games, “it’s over” for the Clippers.

“Seventy-five per cent of our business comes from gate receipts. We don’t have TV contracts, we have a limited amount of sponsorship business in a small city…” Mussio said. “So it comes down to the fans and if you don’t have fans in the building, you’re losing a lot of money.”

He said if things change and he gets “surprised pleasantly” and can see a pathway forward, he won’t sell the Clippers, but he has been living Florida of late and has started thinking about buying a hockey team in the U.S.

Mussio has now sold his condo in Nanaimo, but said he loves the city and the Clippers and won’t sell the club to an owner who isn’t worthy.

“I hope an owner or a group of owners can take over and they can withstand heavy losses, but with the lockdowns and all those sort of things that are happening, it’s just not an economically viable business to have…” Mussio said. “You just can’t run a business under these rules, end of story, full stop.”

READ ALSO: Petition calls for government to allow B.C. Hockey League to start playing



editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BCHL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson outlines the province’s three-year budget in Victoria, April 20, 2021. (B.C. government video)
B.C. deficit to grow by $19 billion for COVID-19 recovery spending

Pandemic-year deficit $5 billion lower than forecast

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Two new Maple Ridge schools have COVID-19 exposures

Alouette elementary and Maple Ridge secondary visited by virus

Ridge Meadows RCMP Const. Britteny George and Westview students turned old tires into pet beds. (Special to The News)
Maple Ridge students help turn old tires into pet beds

Westview art classes and RCMP constable take on project

Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Conservative MP Marc Dalton and former MP and Liberal candidate Dan Ruimy.
Dalton slams budget, Ruimy defends Liberal spending

Neither politician sees federal budget triggering an election

FILE – NDP Leader John Horgan, right, and local candidate Mike Farnworth greet one another with an elbow bump during a campaign stop in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday, September 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. won’t be using random individual road stops to enforce travel rules: Safety Minister

Minister Mike Farnworth says travel checks only being considered at major highway junctions, ferry ports

A man pauses at a coffin after carrying it during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. announces historic half-billion-dollar funding for overdose crisis, mental health

Of it, $152 million will be used to address the opioid crisis and see the creation of 195 new substance use treatment beds

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Children’s backpacks and shoes are seen at a CEFA (Core Education and Fine Arts) Early Learning daycare franchise, in Langley, B.C., on Tuesday May 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. budget to expand $10-a-day child care, but misses the mark on ‘truly universal’ system

$111 million will be used to fund 3,750 new $10-a-day spaces though 75 additional ChildCareBC universal prototype sites over the next three years.

John Wekking, Merritt Road Report - Facebook
 Coquihalla Road Report
Wildfire sparks off Coquihalla in Merritt

The wildfire is located near the Dollarama off of Highway 5

Mak Parhar speaks at an anti-mask rally outside the Vancouver Art Gallery on Sunday, Nov. 1, 2020. Parhar was arrested on Nov. 2 and charged with allegedly violating the Quarantine Act after returning from a Flat Earth conference held in Geenville, South Carolina on Oct. 24. (Flat Earth Focker/YouTube.com screenshot)
Judge tosses lawsuit of B.C. COVID-denier who broke quarantine after Flat Earth conference

Mak Parhar accused gov, police of trespass, malfeasance, extortion, terrorism, kidnapping and fraud

Ambulance paramedic in full protective gear works outside Lion’s Gate Hospital, March 23, 2020. Hospitals are seeing record numbers of COVID-19 patients more than a year into the pandemic. (The Canadian Press)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate declines, 849 cases Tuesday

Up to 456 people now in hospital, 148 in intensive care

Most Read