By BOB BAUM 11 hours ago

PHOENIX (AP) The other three major professional sports leagues warned in a court document Friday that a ruling against the NHL in its attempt to block the sale and move of the Phoenix Coyotes would set a dangerous precedent.

The NFL, Major League Baseball and the NBA said in a joint brief that such a ruling "has the potential to undermine the business of professional hockey and other major league sports."

The three leagues joined in an "amici curiae" brief in U.S. Bankruptcy Court supporting the NHL's right to determine where a team is located and who owns it.

Judge Redfield Baum set a deadline of midnight Friday for filing briefs in the bitter court fight between the NHL and Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie, who wants to buy the bankrupt Coyotes for $212.5 million and move them to Hamilton, Ontario.

Baum has set a hearing next Tuesday for arguments on whether he should approve the sale and transfer of the franchise over the NHL's objections, an issue the judge called "the 10,000-pound elephant in the room."

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