SBD/31/Leagues Governing Bodies

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  • BASEBALL HELD HOSTAGE -- DAY 81: MOSS TO LAUNCH LEAGUE

         Longtime agent Dick Moss will announce formation of his new
    United League at a news conference in New York on Tuesday.  Moss:
    "A lot of people are involved.  And, of course, they have a lot
    of money.  We need money.  And players and stadiums and clout --
    that's the American way."  The CHICAGO TRIBUNE gives details of a
    40-page prospectus sent to potential investors which states "the
    league will open with 10-12 teams and include clubs in the US,
    Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Venezuela, Japan, Taiwan, and South
    Korea," and also expand to 16 teams in three years. It projects
    team payrolls of $13M in the first season, increasing to $20M in
    the 5th or 6th.  But MLB owners do not view the new league as a
    threat.  One AL "mogul":  "Moss has as much chance of putting
    that across as I have going to the moon in nine minutes" (Jerome
    Holtzman, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 10/30).  Moss hinted the league, which
    could start as early as spring '95, "may include a franchise in
    DC."  Former U.S. Rep. Bob Mrazek (D-NY) and economist/author
    Andrew Zimbalist are reportedly involved in the organization of
    the league (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 10/29).
         MLB NEWS & NOTES:  Will McDonough writes the Red Sox "are
    looking at the possibility of playing a weekend series in
    Ireland, most likely against the Mets in 1996."  The Sox are
    hoping to play the Mets on the 10th anniversary of their '86
    World Series on St. Patrick's weekend in Dublin's Croake Park
    (BOSTON GLOBE, 10/30)....BUSINESS WEEK profiles mediator William
    Usery.  "His method: wear down both sides with talk" (Aaron
    Bernstein, BUSINESS WEEK, 11/7 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: Boston Red Sox, Leagues and Governing Bodies, MLB, New York Mets
  • HOCKEY HELD HOSTAGE -- DAY 31: ACCOUNTING FOR DIFFERENCES

         NHL Senior VP & General Counsel Jeffrey Pash said that the
    league's "revised accounting practices" should satisfy the
    union's concerns that the owners will hide revenues in any
    financial reports the NHL provides (CANADIAN PRESS/ VANCOUVER
    SUN, 10/31).  Last week, the league and union traded faxes on a
    proposal to begin play under the owners' system while the union
    audits the league's finances.  NHLPA Exec Dir Bob Goodenow's
    response:  "To be candid, we are skeptical of the quality of
    information you might provide" (Len Hochberg, WASHINGTON POST,
    10/29).  "The catch, as far as the union was concerned, was that,
    if the audit supported the NHL's claim that it lost $32 million
    in 1992-93 and that 13 teams were operating in the red, the
    players would have to abide by the terms of that last proposal.
    That would be admitting that the league was right all along"
    (Gary Miles, PHILA. INQUIRER, 10/30).  The NHL proposed if the
    audit did not support their claim of growing losses, their
    taxation plan would be removed (Larry Brooks, N.Y. POST, 10/29).
         THE EVER-SHORTENING SCHEDULE:  The league is set to pare its
    schedule again today, and NHL Dir of Hockey Ops Brian Burke said,
    "If it is up to me, the number will be in double digits"
    (CANADIAN PRESS/Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 10/29).
         IS A ROOKIE CAP THE KEY?  "There is growing support for the
    theory that by giving in on the rookie salary cap issue, the
    NHLPA could bring a quick end to the work stoppage," writes Roy
    Cummings in the TAMPA TRIBUNE.  One league source said the NHL
    was prepared to resume play if the union accepted its proposal
    for a rookie cap.  But, when presented with the idea, Goodenow
    reportedly responded, "If that's what you came to talk about then
    we're wasting our time here."  One NHL player:  "I'd say 90
    percent of the players would agree to it" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 10/30).
    In Boston, Kevin Paul Dupont sees "indications" both sides "might
    be able to come to terms" on a rookie cap/floor (BOSTON GLOBE,
    10/30).   ALMOST A HEALTH CARE CRISIS:  "The NHL has decided to
    stop paying health insurance costs for locked-out players and
    their families, saying it is following U.S. federal law by giving
    players 60-day notice that they can keep their coverage only if
    they pay the entire cost themselves."  The union charges the
    league with "slow notification" claiming it found out only after
    Anaheim's Tom Kurvers and his 7 1/2-month pregnant wife were
    involved in an auto accident.  Kurvers:  "I found out at the
    hospital. ... I was a little bit surprised."  But NHL VP of
    Public Relations Arthur Pincus said "no player has been left
    without coverage."  Goodenow:  "They sent notices by regular mail
    and they didn't call us" (Norwood & Dillman, L.A. TIMES, 10/29).
    The union started picking up insurance costs as soon as it found
    out about the lapse (Dave Fay, WASHINGTON TIMES, 10/31).
         PLAYERS' LEAGUES:  In New York, Mark Everson sees the
    union's ability to stage exhibition games as a positive sign for
    a players' league:  "The owners may have started the sequence
    that puts themselves out of business" (N.Y. POST, 10/31).  "The
    bet is" that IMG will sponsor Wayne Gretzky's tour of Europe
    (Kevin Paul Dupont, BOSTON GLOBE, 10/30).
         SOLIDARITY WATCH:  In St. Louis, Dave Luecking reports that
    Blues President Jack Quinn met with some of the Blues' stars and
    other team officials met with some of their players to "work on
    them."  But, "the owners' effort has had no impact" (ST. LOUIS
    POST-DISPATCH, 10/29).  ESPN's Linda Cohn: "On the subject of
    possible cracks in the union, Wayne Gretzky said he can guarantee
    25 of the top guys would not cross and would stay unified"
    ("SportsCenter," 10/28).
         SEEING STARS:  The Stars fired 13 of their 55 full-time
    employees yesterday, mostly from the sales and community
    relations departments.  Stars President Jim Lites said some might
    be rehired, but they would be evaluated on a "case-by-case
    basis."  Stars VP of Advertising & Promotions Jeff Cogen:  "I can
    tell you this, there are very quality people out there in the
    marketplace looking for jobs today" (Mike Heika, FORT WORTH STAR-
    TELEGRAM, 10/29).
    

    Print | Tags: Dallas Stars, ESPN, IMG, Leagues and Governing Bodies, NHL, Southwest Sports Group, St. Louis Blues, Walt Disney
  • NBA ACTION -- IT'S FANTASTICO!

         "The talk of NBA expansion to Tampa has quieted down, even
    by those pursuing the matter, and for good reason.  The NBA
    brought exhibition basketball to Mexico City Friday and Saturday
    night and did huge business."  In Tampa, Bill Fay notes NBA
    Commissioner David Stern "has said several times he thinks the
    domestic market is saturated, but likes the potential in Canada
    and south of the border."  NBA Expansion Committee Chair/Suns
    owner Jerry Colangelo: "Mexico City makes sense for a lot of
    reasons, but mainly because it's an untapped market in one of the
    world's largest cities.  It's not a done deal, but we are down
    here exploring, and the response to our game has been phenomenal"
    (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 10/30).  In Houston, Fran Blinebury previewing
    the Mexico City exhibitions: "So the world becomes smaller and
    the NBA continues to make inroads in every corner that has the
    inclination to hang up rims and begin selling sneakers and
    replica jerseys" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 10/28).
    

    Print | Tags: Leagues and Governing Bodies, NBA, Phoenix Suns
  • NBA NO-STRIKE/NO-LOCKOUT: POST- ANNOUNCEMENT SPIN AND SLAMS

         Several NBA columnists commented over the weekend on the
    NBA-NBPA no-strike/no-lockout agreement for '94-95.
         YEA: In New York, Harvey Araton: "The union knew that too
    many of its young, immature millionaires couldn't deal with a
    lockout.  They need time to grow up, to understand what they're
    selling and to whom" (N.Y. TIMES, 10/30).  In Washington,
    Johnette Howard:  "The NBA, more than any other league,
    recognizes that its players are its product and that you do your
    league no good by running down your players as greedy or selfish
    or money hungry -- even on those occasions when it is true"
    (WASHINGTON POST, 10/30).  In Boston, Will McDonough feels NBA
    players "caved in because they saw their peers in baseball and
    hockey lose big money and didn't want to go down the same road"
    (BOSTON GLOBE, 10/29).
         BOO:  NBPA Exec VP/Knicks forward Charles Smith: "I feel
    good about it from the standpoint that we, as players, felt we
    didn't want to get into the same mayhem as hockey and baseball.
    The downside is that we're back to square one at the end of the
    season" (N.Y. TIMES, 10/29).  Marc Fleisher, the son of former
    NBPA Exec Dir Larry Fleisher, on current NBPA Exec Dir Charlie
    Grantham: "Charlie could have gotten this a month from now.  I'd
    have called the bluff and put David in a p.r. nightmare of
    locking out the players.  You can't run scared from a lockout
    even if you're not sure you can call a strike" (N.Y. TIMES,
    10/29).  Mike Lupica: "It's worth pointing out, though, that the
    NBA is where the NHL was one year ago.  I'm not sure the NBA
    isn't headed for the same kind of trouble, even though Stern is
    portrayed as being smarter than a MENSA meeting. ...  All David
    Stern bought the other day, with ample help from Grantham, is
    time" ("SportsReporters," ESPN, 10/30).
         ROOKIE CAP TALK:  Dave D'Alessandro proposes some form of a
    rookie cap coupled with a 2-year opt-out clause.  "If there is no
    cap, make it fair to the owners by basing these free-agent
    salaries on merit" (Bergen RECORD, 10/30).  76ers coach John
    Lucas on escalating rookie salaries:  "We're going to have to
    reach a happy median where everybody is in a win-win situation.
    Or else we'll see the league drop in attendance because people
    aren't going to care anymore" (Baltimore SUN, 10/31).
    

    Print | Tags: Cablevision, Comcast-Spectacor, ESPN, Leagues and Governing Bodies, NBA, New York Knicks, NHL, Philadelphia 76ers, Walt Disney
  • NFL NEWS & NOTES: REALIGNMENT TALK IS JUST THAT, TALK

         Unless NFL owners "are struck by inspiration" Tuesday, their
    final realignment proposal "appears doomed to the pile of ideas
    too good to come true."  Steelers Owner Dan Rooney is the
    principal supporter of the final realignment plan before the
    owners this week (Don Pierson, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 10/30).  ESPN's
    Chris Mortensen: "Since it makes sense, it probably won't happen"
    ("GameDay," ESPN, 10/30).  The following is reportedly Rooney's
    alignment plan.  Teams that would join new divisions are in CAPS:
    
    
    AFC EAST
    AFC CENT
    AFC WEST NFC EAST NFC CENT NFC WEST
    BUCS PANTHERS OILERS FALCONS JAGUARS CARDINALS
    Dolphins COLTS Broncos Cowboys Packers SEAHAWKS
    Bills Steelers Raiders Redskins Vikings 49ers
    Jets Browns Chargers Giants Lions Rams
    Patriots Bengals Chiefs Eagles Bears Saints
    STUMBLING BLOCK: Cardinals owner Bill Bidwell is "adamantly opposed to separating from Dallas and thinks the plan is dead. ... If anyone should be in favor of new rivalries, it's Bidwell. And just think if the Los Angeles Rams move to St. Louis. Wouldn't a Cards-Rams NFC West matchup sell?" (Don Pierson, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 10/30). Rooney claims he knows of only four opponents to his plan, "but a quick nose-count" by the ATLANTA CONSTITUTION shows "wholesale objections in the NFC East, NFC West and AFC West." Falcons owner Rankin Smith "has said if the team can't be in a so-called Southeast Division, he would stay in the West" (Len Pasquarelli, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 10/30). YES VOTES: Broncos owner Pat Bowlen said he will vote for the plan: "I have no problems with it. ... We are relatively unaffected by the plans" (ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 10/28). Packers President Bob Harlan: "We'd vote for this in a minute" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 10/30). Assuming the Rooney plan is voted down, the Jaguars will be placed in the AFC Central and the Panthers in the NFC West (Will McDonough, BOSTON GLOBE, 10/30). Dave Anderson: "Just hope that kids don't follow the NFL to learn geography" (N.Y. TIMES, 10/30). Adding an expansion team to the NFC Central "would mean more lucrative paydays for visiting teams, so teams that don't necessarily draw well on the road, such as the Packers and Lions, would appreciate adding one of the expansion teams" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 10/31). OTHER NEWS: The Patriots have asked the NFL to plan an American Bowl in Israel in the near future. Patriots owner Bob Kraft: "I've talked with Dan Rooney about it. I told him we could go one year to Israel and the next to Ireland. I'm very interested in Israel and he has strong ties to Ireland" (Will McDonough, BOSTON GLOBE, 10/29).

    Print | Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Buffalo Bills, Chicago Bears, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Edmonton Oilers, ESPN, Green Bay Packers, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, Leagues and Governing Bodies, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets, NFL, Oakland Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Diego Chargers, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Vulcan Ventures, Walt Disney, Washington Redskins
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