SBD/26/Leagues Governing Bodies

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  • MOSS READY TO LAUNCH NEW BASEBALL LEAGUE ON OCTOBER 19

         Agent Dick Moss plans to announce the formation of a new
    baseball league on October 19 that he says will be operational
    this April.  A similar project by Moss and NYC attorney David
    LeFevre fell apart in '89-90.  But in the wake of the strike,
    Moss now says:  "It's a very real thing.  We have some very
    substantial people involved."  Moss said the league would be
    comprised of 10-12 teams and play in cities "spurned" by MLB,
    including Buffalo, Mexico City, Tampa and Vancouver, as well as
    some smaller stadiums in MLB cities (Joel Sherman, N.Y. POST,
    9/24).
         WILL MLBPA'S TRUST IN CONGRESS PAY OFF?  Red Sox CEO John
    Harrington, who originally set November 1 as a deadline for
    settlement, now sees December as "realistic" given the recent
    House hearings on MLB's antitrust exemption.  Harrington:  "It's
    a major distraction and I hope the players aren't thinking they'd
    like to wait until January where they might think a ruling would
    be favorable for them" (Nick Cafardo, BOSTON GLOBE, 9/25).  After
    seeing a copy of the bill to do away with the exemption, Braves
    President Stan Kasten said the players are "trying to become a
    special class of citizen.  They are not asking for a level
    playing field.  This is an outrage."  Kasten stressed that, in
    the absence of an exemption, a court could not force the game
    back on the field (I.J. Rosenberg, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 9/24).
    In Richmond, Paul Woody writes on the players' promise to return
    to work and fight the issue out in court should the exemption be
    lifted:  "That's a bluff worth calling" (RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH,
    9/25).  Another paper's editorial board joins the players' cause.
    From Sunday's CINCINNATI ENQUIRER:  "[The exemption] is as
    unsporting as a corked bat.  It should be given the thumb"
    (ENQUIRER, 9/25).  In Tampa, Neil Cote sees an upside for the
    owners in losing the exemption:  "It would allow teams even
    greater latitude to shake down their cities.  How?  By adding
    teeth to their threats to move" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 9/26).
         BIG CITY, SMALL MEETING:  Cal Ripken, Dave Winfield and
    Eddie Murray were among 22 players from 14 teams that attended
    the third of seven informational meetings planned by the MLBPA.
    Ripken, asked about the possibility of games played by
    replacement players ending his streak:  "If replacement players
    play, it is not major-league baseball and I won't be playing"
    (Joel Sherman, N.Y. POST, 9/24).  MLBPA Exec Dir Don Fehr "said
    he was not surprised at the low turnout, since most of the
    players live in other parts of the country."  Fehr's "caravan"
    visits four other cities this week (Larry Whiteside, BOSTON
    GLOBE, 9/24).
         STRIKING THOUGHTS:  The Cardinal's "fan appreciation day"
    open house at Busch Stadium drew 50,000 fans Sunday (ST. LOUIS
    POST-DISPATCH, 9/26)....Former Commissioner Bowie Kuhn suggests
    the trio that negotiated the Haitian settlement (Carter, Powell,
    Nunn) as baseball mediators (N.Y. TIMES, 9/25)....Agent Tony
    Attanasio says Japan is a "very real" option for many players
    should the strike continue into '95 (Jayson Stark, PHILADELPHIA
    INQUIRER, 9/25)....Orioles Owner Peter Angelos and Fehr had lunch
    Saturday afternoon.  Restaurant proprietor Naz Velleggia:  "They
    were very quiet and congenial and never raised their voices" (Tom
    Keegan, Baltimore SUN, 9/25)....Bill Madden suggest that former
    MSG President Bob Gutkowski would be a better choice for
    Commissioner than retiring George Mitchell.  "He knows the TV
    business inside and out with the MSG Network at the top of his
    resume.  Shrewd, dynamic, personable ... but most important of
    all, Gutkowski made the Garden a fan-friendly place" (N.Y. DAILY
    NEWS, 9/25).
    

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  • NFL OWNERS TO DISCUSS EXPANSION DRAFT AND REALIGNMENT

         NFL owners meet in Dallas tomorrow for two days of
    discussions on stocking expansion teams and realignment.  The
    league office is expected to offer a stocking plan in which each
    of the 28 clubs leaves seven players unprotected.  The league
    plan allows for a maximum of three players to be taken from a
    team.  Jacksonville proposed that each team leave at least one
    quarterback exposed, but the league office dismissed that
    proposal (Will McDonough, BOSTON GLOBE, 9/25).  The owners are
    also expected to approve a plan in which Carolina and
    Jacksonville get only one first-round pick at next year's draft,
    and two picks in the later rounds (Vito Stellino, Baltimore SUN,
    9/25).
         MORE CAP NEWS:  In Boston, Will McDonugh comments on figures
    released by the NFLPA showing 18 teams over the $34.6M cap:  "I
    submit that anyone who sees the results in basketball and
    football and thinks salary caps are bad for the players be given
    a dunce cap" (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/24).
         OWNERS TO PROBE DEION DEAL:  ESPN's Chris Mortensen reports
    that some owners have "demanded" a meeting with NFL Commissioner
    Paul Tagliabue this Friday regarding a possible third party --
    "i.e., a corporate sponsor" -- involved in Deion Sanders'
    contract with the 49ers,  In addition, they want to discuss the
    49ers' tact of asking a free agent to take a pay cut and then re-
    sign in the spring.  Mortensen: "There might be a penalty for
    that" ("NFL Game Day," 9/25).
    

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  • NOT TO BE LEFT OUT: LOCKOUT TALK IN THE NBA, TOO

         ESPN's Linda Cohn followed up on speculation from last week
    that the NBA is considering a Thanksgiving lockout of players if
    a new collective bargaining agreement is not signed.  NBA Deputy
    Commissioner Russ Granik denied that would occur: "It is much too
    early to make any decisions about anything like that.  We still
    have six weeks before the season starts" ("SportsCenter," ESPN,
    9/24).  The possibility of a lockout is expected to be discussed
    at Wednesday's NBA Board of Governors meeting at which
    representatives from all 27 teams will convene.  Before
    negotiating with the owners, the players reportedly want to hear
    the decision by a federal court panel on the validity of the
    NBA's salary cap, free-agency system and draft.  A decision is
    expected in 4-6 weeks.  NBPA Exec Dir Charles Grantham contends
    that the players "will stand firm" against any calls for a hard
    cap.  Grantham added: "I want to make this clear: they [players]
    are not going to stand for the status quo" (Lawrence & Bunn, N.Y.
    DAILY NEWS, 9/25).
    

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  • ONE WEEK REMAINING: CRUCIAL ROUND OF TALKS FOR NHL

         "The art of compromise takes on a sense of urgency" today
    when NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Exec Dir Bob
    Goodenow resume talks in Toronto on a new Collective Bargaining
    Agreement (Alan Adams, CANADIAN PRESS/Toronto GLOBE & MAIL,
    9/26).  Bettman's negotiating team will be in Toronto through
    Wednesday.  NHL Public Relations VP Arthur Pincus said the league
    has "no plans" to formally cancel games as of yet: "We'll be
    evaluating things day to day, but at some point a decision will
    have to be made about Saturday's games" (Lance Hornby, TORONTO
    SUN, 9/26).
         JUST IN CASE:  NHL teams have booked their arenas for dates
    at least through the end of June in order to allow for a full
    regular-season schedule, followed by a full playoff. NHL teams
    reportedly plan to play the entire 84-game schedule by
    rescheduling postponed games at the end of the season (Larry
    Brooks, N.Y. POST, 9/24).
         WHERE WERE THEY IN JUNE?  In New Jersey, Devils captain
    Scott Stevens "expressed disappointment" that there had been no
    negotiations between March and August: "We should have started
    long ago.  There are so many time restrictions and now we face
    this time restriction.  Both sides have to take the blame for
    that."  But Bettman said his requests to meet with Goodenow over
    the summer were "rebuffed repeatedly": "I don't want to dwell on
    it because we are talking now, but there were numerous occasions
    we asked to meet and were turned down" (Larry Brooks, N.Y. POST,
    9/24).
         NHL PROPOSAL JUST ISN'T GOOD 'ENUFF:  In St. Louis, NHLPA
    Exec Dir Bob Goodenow met with Blues players on Saturday and
    updated them on the negotiations.  Goodenow: "There's a lot of
    work left on both sides of the table.  We'll try to reach an
    amicable solution in the appropriate time frame" (ST. LOUIS POST-
    DISPATCH, 9/25).
         VANCOUVER SUPPORTS OWNERS:  Last week, the Vancouver
    PROVINCE conducted an unscientific poll in which 261 respondents
    were asked: "Do you support the players in their salary fight
    with NHL team owners?"  The response was "resounding":  90% No.
    Kent Gilchrist advises the poll "not be dismissed out of hand" by
    the players (PROVINCE, 9/26).
         ARE PLAYERS READY TO DIG IN?  In Washington, Capitals Player
    Rep Don Beaupre: "Right now we're prepared for a three-, four-,
    five-month lockout"  (Mark Asher, WASHINGTON POST, 9/24).  But in
    Tampa Bay, Lightning Player Rep Danton Cole said he "wasn't sure"
    how strong the union is: "We're strong like a family, but I don't
    think anyone can say for sure how long either side could hold
    out" (Tom Jones, TAMPA TRIBUNE, 9/24).  Mighty Ducks Player Rep
    Bob Corkum called Bettman a "hired gun":  "He definitely came
    here to get a salary cap and he's not going to fold up easily"
    (CP/VANCOUVER SUN, 9/26).
         COLUMNISTS VOICE OFF:  In Toronto, Jim Hunt writes that
    Bettman "has done his damndest to provoke the players," and if a
    lockout occurs, "it's Bettman who will have blood on his hands"
    (TORONTO SUN, 9/26).  In Boston, Kevin Dupont writes, "Try to
    remember what the players have forgotten: It's Bettman's side
    that owns the show. ... Hockey players have no choice now but to
    accept what's before them" (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/25).  In
    Philadelphia, Bill Lyons writes, "There is a decidedly mean edge
    to the way the league has operated recently.  It seems to be
    bristling for a fight" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 9/24).  In
    Washington, Dave Fay writes, "The players don't trust Bettman
    because he is an outsider and not a hockey man.  Put Wayne
    Gretzky on one side of the table and Boston GM Harry Sinden on
    the other and this thing might be settled in 15 minutes.  Half an
    hour, tops" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 9/25).  In Tampa Bay, Roy Cummings
    advises hockey fans to "aim your angst" at Goodenow.  While a
    possible lockout is one week away, "Goodenow sits, like Nero amid
    Rome's burning embers.  He may negotiate, he may not, but
    apparently only when it's convenient for him" (TAMPA TRIBUNE,
    9/25).
         COMEDIANS AGAINST THE CAP:  At the end of the season premier
    of "Saturday Night Live," Mike Myers was front-and-center showing
    off his "NHLPA" sweatshirt (NBC, 9/24).
    

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