Ryan Reynolds Interested in Buying Ottawa Senators: Source

Ryan Reynolds is very interested in buying the Ottawa Senators should the NHL team ultimately be sold, a source tells PEOPLE.

Beyond the business opportunity, it is important to Reynolds the team stay in Ottawa, as a sale could result in relocation, the source close to the dead pool actor explains exclusively to PEOPLE.

A representative for Reynolds, 46, declined to comment when contacted by PEOPLE.

The NHL did not immediately respond when reached for a statement while the team could not be reached for comment.

Jeff Vinnick/NHLI/Getty

The news comes on the heels of rumblings that the team’s board of directors is reportedly lining up for a potential sale, which was first reported by Sportico.

According to the outlet, the team hired Galatioto Sports Partners (GSP), a sports banking firm, which could be interpreted as a sign of a sale. GSP President Sal Galatioto declined to comment to PEOPLE concerning a possible sale.

Reports of the potential sale surfaced months after the March 28 death of owner Eugene Melnyk, who left the team to his two daughters, Anna and Olivia. A board of directors currently runs the franchise on the daughters’ behalf.

Bruce Firestone, the team’s founder, recently told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation that it was likely time for a change in ownership.

“With the team on the upswing, there will likely be quite a bit of interest,” he said. “My hope is that a local group will take over, and I’ve spoken with a few who may participate.”

Firestone told PEOPLE via email on Wednesday that he is aware of “at least two local groups who are looking at the opportunity,” but he had not heard Reynolds’ name attached to either.

Reynolds, according to PEOPLE’s source, has kept his (team interest) cards close to his chest. That is, until Tuesday when a Twitter user mentioned to him that the team was up for sale and the Spirited star replied with the hand-on-the-chin interested emoji.

Reports of a sale come mere months after the Senators inked a deal with the National Capital Commission potentially bringing a new NHL arena to LeBreton Flats near downtown Ottawa, the CBC reported.

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Owning a professional sports team is not uncharted territory for Reynolds. In February 2021, Reynolds and fellow actor Rob McElhenney purchased the Welsh football club Wrexham AFC.

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