Hedge Fund Manager Takes Title To Hockey Team

Mar 4 2010 | 6:38am ET

Hedge fund manager Jeffrey Vinik now officially has his second job: owner of a professional hockey team.

The founder of Boston-based Vinik Asset Management took control of the Tampa Bay Lightning yesterday, after the National Hockey League’s board of governors approved the team’s transfer to Vinik’s Tampa Bay Sports and Entertainment.

“The Lightning is a great franchise in a terrific community,” Vinik said. “We thank Oren Koules and his partners for beginning the turnaround of the Lightning hockey club. Our goal now is to build a world-class organization on and off the ice.”

Vinik reportedly paid $110 million in cash for the team, which has faced financial trouble in recent years.

Vinik was personally recruited by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to take over the team, which needed an advance on both its television rights and revenue sharing money last season and this one to meet its payroll. The team’s former owner, OK Hockey, reportedly defaulted on some loans.

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