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Quebec group taking shot at NBA expansion team for Montreal

Boston Bruins v Montreal Canadiens - Game Three

MONTREAL, QC - MAY 6: Daniel Paille #20 of the Boston Bruins ties his skate over the in ice Montreal Canadiens logo during warmup prior to Game Three of the Second Round of the 2014 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Bell Centre on May 6, 2014 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Francois Laplante/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images)

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MONTREAL (AP) -- A Quebec group wants to bring an NBA team to Montreal even though the league has no current plans to expand.

The business group is led by former federal cabinet minister and senator Michael Fortier. He said Wednesday he has spoken with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, adding that his group has “taken the decision to prepare for when expansion does take place.” The group has been meeting with potential Canadian and foreign investors.

Fortier estimated a franchise would cost $1.5 billion to $2 billion, but no public funding would be required. He says Montreal Canadiens owner Geoff Molson is open to an NBA team playing at the NHL club’s Bell Centre.

The favorite for an NBA expansion team is Seattle, which lost the SuperSonics to Oklahoma City in 2008.