SBD/21/Leagues Governing Bodies

CBA READY TO BEGIN SOUTH OF THE BORDER

     The Mexico Aztecas of the CBA will "begin play as the first
U.S. pro sports franchise based in Mexico."  The CBA envisions
itself as building a fan base and an organization for the NBA.
"The reality is that this market really can and should be
leveraged into the NBA's North America expansion plans," said
Douglas Logan, team president and director general of OCESA, the
Aztecas' parent comany.  "If the NBA comes here, we see ourselves
being involved, either as a partner or a minority owner.
Somehow."  Terry Lyons, head of the NBA's Int'l Public Relations,
said Commissioner David Stern is "on record as saying that Mexico
City is a definite potential expansion site ... after the year
2000."  The economic appeal of Mexico is "obvious," as the market
is one of the largest in the world, and the level of people with
disposible incomes has risen.  Logan called the CBA's venture a
"controlled experiment," and Doug Clouse, Events Dir for OCESA
said, "We'll test out different promotions, things that we've
been doing in the States for 15 years that people here have never
seen.  This is as much an experiment for us as it is for the
Mexicans."  Mexicans know the NBA game and its players through
cable TV, but the "NBA's appeal has yet to translate into CBA
ticket sales. ... Sales so far, have been dismal."  Goals of
8,000/game are "lofty," but Logan says they are in for the long
haul and can absorb early losses" (Colin McMahon, CHICAGO
TRIBUNE, 11/20).
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