‘I love Ottawa’: Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds confirms interest in buying Senators

Senators stock image

The rumours are true – Ryan Reynolds wants to buy the Ottawa Senators.

Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon asked Reynolds directly if the Canadian movie star was interested in purchasing the NHL club. Reynolds was firm in his response on Monday night.

“Yes, that is true,” said Reynolds, who is already co-owner of the Welsh soccer club Wrexham with fellow actor Rob McElhenney. “I am trying to do that. It’s very expensive.”

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Added Reynolds with a laugh: “I need a partner with really deep pockets.”

Forbes magazine valued the Senators at US$525 million in December 2021, about four months before former owner Eugene Melnyk died.

Within months of Melnyk’s death, the Senators were once again the preferred partner for a proposed arena project at LeBreton Flats, likely increasing the team’s value. The Senators previously looked at moving to LeBreton Flats, but the plan fell apart after Melnyk and his business partners, including John Ruddy of Trinity Development Group, sued each other.

The Melnyk estate has made it clear that the team will only be sold if the purchaser agrees to keep the team in Ottawa.

The star of the Deadpool series of films addressed both the expense of buying an NHL team and keeping the team in Canada’s capital in his interview with Fallon.

Reynolds said he would have to be the face of a consortium to buy the Senators, which he said is “a fancy way of saying I need a sugar mommy or a sugar daddy.” Although he is from Vancouver, Reynolds also spoke of his fondness for the National Capital Region.

“I love Ottawa. I grew up in Vancouver, which has my heart always, but I also grew up in Ottawa,” said Reynolds. “I spent a long time in Vanier, which is a little town right inside Ottawa.”

Melnyk purchased the Senators in 2003 for US$92 million at a time when the franchise faced bankruptcy and a tenuous future in the nation’s capital.

The team’s day-to-day operations have been handled by the board of directors since Melnyk’s death.

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