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  • CANADIANS SEE A TOUGHER INITIATION FOR NBA EXPANSION TEAMS

         In Vancouver, Mike Beamish compares the last round of NHL
    expansion (Anaheim & Florida) with the latest round of NBA
    expansion (Toronto and Vancouver), and concludes when the NHL
    decided to expand, "Rather than just the dregs, which is what any
    previous expansion team had been offered, the Panthers and Mighty
    Ducks were allowed to be respectable in their first season in the
    interests of establishing a hockey footprint in the American
    Sunbelt."  By the same process, the NBA, "a league accustomed to
    innovation and less rigid infrastructure, chose the traditional
    style when it made its move into Canada.  The theme of the latest
    NBA shakedown:  Let's hose the hosers."  The new NBA teams had to
    pay an entry fee of $125M, but will only get the 6th or 7th pick
    in the '95 draft, and the current teams will get to protect eight
    players on their 12 man rosters for the expansion draft.  Other
    restraints:  the new teams have agreed to a $10.6M salary cap in
    their first year versus the approximately $16M for other teams
    (VANCOUVER SUN, 10/4).  The cap rises to 75% of the league's cap
    in the 2nd season, and then equal in the 3r.  The expansion draft
    is tentatively scheduled for June 21 in Toronto -- a week before
    the regular NBA draft (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 10/4).
         VANCOUVER WATCH:  The Grizzlies have "deposits on hand" for
    just over 7,000 season tickets and 1,244 suite seats at "now
    under-construction" General Motors Place.  The NBA requires that
    50% of the dollar value of a minimum 15,000 season tickets be in
    place by December 31.  With that deadline "hanging around their
    necks like an albatross," the Grizzlies announced three new
    ticket-buying plans -- aimed at "casual fans, youngsters who
    attend elementary or high school, and employees who may want to
    purchase season tickets through payroll deductions if their
    companies participate."  Grizzlies VP/GM Stu Jackson admitted
    it's difficult for the Grizzlies to create a "sense of urgency
    for ticket buying."  But he adds: "In-house, there's a real sense
    of urgency" (Dan Stinson, VANCOUVER SUN, 10/4).
         WORK STOPPAGE GOOD FOR VANCOUVER:  "The only possible silver
    lining of a shutdown" for Vancouver is that the '94-95 season
    might be delayed -- and with it the "onerous stipulation that the
    Grizzlies must come up with 15,000 season ticket buyers" by
    December 15.  But then any work stoppage "might bring out the
    fans' frankly-I-don't-give-a-damn resentment" (Mike Beamish,
    VANCOUVER SUN, 10/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Franchises, General Motors, NBA, NHL
  • FRANCHISE NOTES

         There is speculation that the CFL's Las Vegas Posse, which
    drew only 7,438 for Doug Flutie's Calgary Stampeders, may play
    their last two games of the season in a test market.  CFL
    Commissioner Larry Smith and others met via conference call over
    the weekend to discuss the Las Vegas problem.  Posse coach Ron
    Meyer said that every indication is that they will finish the
    season in Vegas (Baltimore SUN, 10/4)....The Norwich, CT,
    Navigators received official word yesterday that they will be the
    Yankees' AA-affiliate for at least the next two seasons (HARTFORD
    COURANT, 10/4).... Unless Pawtucket officials can replace
    "undersized" McCoy Stadium, the Red Sox' AAA team may move, with
    Providence and Worcester as possible sites (BOSTON HERALD, 10/3).
    

    Print | Tags: Boston Red Sox, CFL, Franchises, New York Yankees, YankeeNets
  • NBA TO DELAY VOTE TO APPROVE HEAT SALE BY 2-3 WEEKS

         Whit Hudson learned Monday that NBA owners will not vote
    until mid- to late-October on whether to approve his purchase of
    a 40% share of the Heat.  Hudson, who plans to buy the shares of
    Heat part-owners Lewis Schaffel and Billy Cunningham, hoped to
    have the sale approved tomorrow at the NBA owners meeting in New
    York.  But the league said the purchase will be discussed but not
    voted upon.  That means Hudson must wait even longer to hire a
    GM, leaving Schaffel and Cunningham in charge of team operations.
    Hudson said the delay "is nothing out of the ordinary."  NBA
    attorney Joel Litvin said the vote is being delayed because
    paperwork surrounding the sale was not complete.  Hudson meets
    with the NBA's finance committee today and Wednesday to address
    any financial questions (Alex Marvez, MIAMI HERALD, 10/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Franchises, Miami Heat, NBA
  • PETER ANGELOS UNPLUGGED: LIVING UP TO "LOOSE CANNON" LABEL

         Orioles owner Peter Angelos responds to his "outsider"
    status among MLB owners in this morning's Baltimore SUN.
    Angelos: "When is the appropriate time to speak one's mind? ...
    You mean when I bought this ballclub for the purpose of having
    Maryland ownership that I signed onto some organization in which
    what I have to say is to be heard one year from now?"  Angelos
    recalls one of his first owners meetings at which he took issue
    with negotiator Richard Ravitch's contention that "rational
    persuasion will have no place" in negotiations with the MLBPA:
    "He was passing himself off as a negotiator, but if he believes
    that he's (an) idiot."  Angelos continues, "Am I sorry for taking
    on (Mr. Ravitch)?  I'm sorry I didn't totally demolish him."  On
    Acting Commissioner Bud Selig:  "He is a very successful
    autmobile dealer.  What makes him think he has the abilities to
    do what he is attempting to do here is beyond my comprehension"
    (Mark Hyman, Baltimore SUN, 10/4).
          HE'LL GET HIS:  Phillies President Bill Giles responds that
    Angelos comments during the strike have not been "helpful" and
    notes:  "We've had these problems before with different
    people.... You don't put them on (influential) committees."
    Angelos agrees that the committees are "stacked," but he claims
    that he "will play a role" in the labor talks "eventually, and
    maybe sooner than one might think" (Mark Hyman, Baltimore SUN,
    10/4).
         TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT?  Ken Rosenthal responds to Angelos
    comments, writing that Selig might be making a "little list" of
    such statements which could "come in handy" when considering a
    team for Northern VA.  Rosenthal writes that Angelos "probably
    couldn't block" such a move and even though the potential for a
    VA franchise is questionable, "the owners know how to keep score"
    (Baltimore SUN, 10/4).
    

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch, Baltimore Orioles, Franchises, MLB, Philadelphia Phillies
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