Fans in Hamiton rally to support Balsillie

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Hundreds of fans rallied Friday to show support for billionaire Jim Balsillie's efforts to bring an NHL franchise to the city.

The rally was part of his so-called "Make It Seven Day," which was organized to provide a voice to Canadian hockey fans and raise money for minor hockey teams across the country.

Balsillie wasn't at the event, but his spokesman, Bill Walker, said giving Canada another NHL team would only make the league stronger. Walker read a letter from Balsillie, who thanked the community for its support and reiterated his commitment to bring a team to the city.

Balsillie's bid for the Phoenix Coyotes was rejected by an Arizona bankruptcy judge. The Coyotes have asked the judge to set a Sept. 15 deadline for the sale of the financially troubled team.

The Coyotes said in court filings on Thursday that Balsillie's company would be willing to extend its bid.