The importance of contracts is evident even with a cursory review of the long discussion over termination of coaching contracts and the Compliant filed against the Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena ("JSBIA"), the NAHL, and the Motor City Metal Jackets.
The Complaint reads like a lesson in what not to do when it comes to contracts. Albeit, contract law 101 was some time ago, the first thing that comes to mind is the notion that breaching contracts is common business practice in certain industries. Breaching a contract and paying the compensatory and incidental damages may be more efficient and economical than following through on the performance of the contract.
It seems like the NAHL, arguably through the acts of Commissioner Frankenfeld, is no stranger to breaching contracts and eating the costs. The next question is whether the NAHL could eat the costs of inducing the breach of the lease agreement between the JSBIA and the Jamestown Jets. Is the Complaint a non-starter? Will the suit settle like most cases nowadays?
If the alleged damages are not an economic deterrent for the NAHL, the most important claim for relief in the Complaint is the claim for specific performance. Specific performance would require the breaching party to honor their promise made in the contract.
The key question is whether specific performance is likely to be granted. If specific performance is granted in favor of the Jamestown Jets, where will the Ironmen go? Will they return to the arena from which they came? Or will they have to find a new arena seeing how they seemingly burned the bridges back to their old arena. If specific performance is denied and only monetary damages are awarded, will the Jamestown Jets be bought out of exist? How likely is a grant of specific performance?
It will be interesting to see what the defendants file as an Answer to the Complaint.