SBD/15/Leagues Governing Bodies

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  • BASEBALL HELD HOSTAGE -- DAY 96: A CAP BY ANY OTHER NAME

         MLB owners, led by Red Sox CEO John Harrington, will propose
    a revenue or payroll tax system to the union when the talks
    resume in Washington on Thursday.  "The shift ... marks
    management's first change in strategy" since their salary cap
    proposal of June 14.  Harrington noted that "a tax concept can
    look like a salary cap" and is still intended to control labor
    costs.  Harrington:  "All payrolls would be taxed at a low
    percentage" (BOSTON HERALD, 11/15).  MLB General Counsel Gene
    Orza:  "It doesn't make me more pessimistic or optimistic.  I
    just want to see it."  Unlike the union's September 8 proposal
    suggesting a tax on the top 16 teams, Harrington said owners feel
    "some other rationale" should determine the level at which
    payrolls are taxed:  "We're going to try to marry the best parts
    of a luxury tax with a general payroll tax" (AP/CHICAGO TRIBUNE,
    11/15).
         FLICKERING HOPE:  According to this morning's WASHINGTON
    POST, teams would be taxed "substantially" on payroll money above
    a predetermined level, which in turn would be used to subsidize
    small market teams.  Sources close to the situation say
    "concerned" owners who called management leaders yesterday to ask
    why the salary cap had been removed, were "assured that the in-
    the-works proposal will have a mechanism for containing players'
    salaries."  It "remains unclear" whether this offer will move the
    groups "substantially" closer, but any "hope" for a settlement
    depends on whether special mediator Bill Usery can get the two
    sides to "begin negotiating on the particulars" of a taxation
    system (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 11/15).
    

    Print | Tags: Boston Red Sox, Leagues and Governing Bodies, MLB
  • HOCKEY HELD HOSTAGE -- DAY 46: UPDATE FROM TORONTO

         NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Exec Dir Bob
    Goodenow dined together last night in Toronto -- no word on what
    was discussed -- and the two will attend the Hall of Fame
    induction ceremonies today.  While there is no negotiating
    session scheduled for today, Bettman and NHL Senior VP & Dir of
    Hockey Ops Brian Burke will brief the league's 26 general
    managers on a reported new proposal.  According to the TORONTO
    STAR's Bob McKenzie, "The new owner proposal will reportedly
    center on entry-level restrictions and salary arbitration.
    Specifically, it will put some teeth -- big, sharp ones, no doubt
    -- into the players' entry-level proposals that were described by
    various management types as 'toothless'" (TORONTO STAR, 11/15).
         SOBERING THOUGHTS:  Bruins President & GM Harry Sinden:  "It
    really makes me sick because if through our stupidity, all of us,
    the season goes down the drain, I don't see how you're going to
    save next season" (AP/BOSTON HERALD, 11/15). ....In Washington,
    Dave Fay writes that "even the most optimistic observer" believes
    any deal will take two weeks of constant negotiation, moving the
    calendar to December 1.  A three-week exhibition season would
    leave a December 26 or January 1 start date, meaning that a 50-
    game season "could be squeezed in but just barely."  One union
    official:  "It's the owners who face a deadline, not us"
    (WASHINGTON TIMES, 11/15)....Whalers Player Rep Pat Verbeek is
    ready to leave for Europe.  He is awaiting offers from teams in
    Switzerland, Germany and France (HARTFORD COURANT, 11/15).
    According to the NHLPA, only the Bruins' Ted Donato is the only
    union rep to head to Eurpoe thus far.
         WESTERN ROUND-UP:  In this morning's WALL STREET JOURNAL,
    John Helyar examines the financial plight of Western Canada's
    franchises, focusing on the Flames.  Helyar reports, "Even if the
    owners win concessions, Canada's small-market teams may have lost
    their grip on the fans.  In Calgary, the Flames are now viewed
    less as icon and more as ice-biz" (WALL STREET JOURNAL,
    11/15)....According to the annual report from Northwest Sports,
    the parent company of the Canucks, the team made an after-tax
    profit of $921,341 on revenues of $50,378,819 in '93-94
    (VANCOUVER SUN, 11/15).
    

    Print | Tags: Boston Bruins, Calgary Flames, Leagues and Governing Bodies, NHL, Canucks Sports and Entertainment, Vancouver Canucks
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