NHL reinstates Ducks' owner Henry Samueli [updated]
The NHL today announced it has reinstated Henry Samueli as owner of the Ducks, ending the indefinite suspension it levied against him on June 24, 2008, after he pleaded guilty to lying to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Samueli, co-founder of the chipmaker Broadcom, had been the subject of a federal investigation into illegal stock option backdating at Broadcom. His wife, Susan, voluntarily stepped aside when her husband was suspended. She too, has been reinstated to active status as co-owner.
The move had not been expected to happen for a few months, until other issues related to the case had been resolved.
“We welcome Henry and Susan Samueli back as fully reinstated owners and members of the NHL community,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement.
Michael Schulman, the Ducks' chief executive officer and a longtime friend of the Samuelis, had been running the club in their absence.
[Updated at 1:05 p.m.: Henry Samueli will return to his role of club governor, with co-owner Susan Samueli and Schulman acting as alternate governors. Schulman, Executive Vice President-General Manager Bob Murray and Executive Vice President-Chief Operating Officer Tim Ryan will continue to run the day-to-day operations of the club, with Murray and Ryan reporting to Schulman.
“Susan and I are very happy to be returning to work with the Ducks,” Henry Samueli said in a statement released by the Ducks.
“We are thankful to have had great leadership in place that successfully operated the team during this time and look forward to reestablishing contact with the organization. Our goal remains the same -– to be a championship-caliber organization both on and off the ice. We are also pleased to be able to return to a more active role in the many philanthropic efforts that the Ducks have undertaken throughout the Southern California community.”
Henry and Susan Samueli purchased the club on June 20, 2005. The Ducks in 2007 became the first California-based club to win the Stanley Cup and have qualified for the playoffs the last four seasons. The club has won more playoff games since 2005-06 (34) than any other team in the NHL except the Detroit Red Wings, who have 43 playoff wins, and has played to Honda Center crowds at 95.2% of capacity during that time.
However, the Ducks have been struggling this season and are ranked 14th of 15 teams in the West after their loss at New Jersey on Wednesday.]
-- Helene Elliott
More later at www.latimes.com/sports
Photo: Henry Samueli with his wife, Susan, in June. Credit: Benjamin Reed / Los Angeles Times.