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         NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue said the NFL is not looking
    at legal action keep the Rams in the L.A. area.  Tagliabue:
    "We're not angling for litigation, we're not trying to stoke any
    litigation."  These comments come in response to Rams President
    John Shaw's comments that the Rams might sign a short-term lease
    in Anaheim "if the league tries to block a move to St. Louis."
    If a franchise moves, Tagliabue said he would "make an in-depth
    review, make a report to the ownership, and then see what their
    opinions are based upon whatever report I make."  If the Rams
    make a request to move, Tagliabue said, "We will be looking very
    carefully at the fan support, the booster support, and all
    aspects of that as we approach any application the Rams make.  If
    they make one."  He did say that recent legal decisions on
    franchise relocation "clarified the approach the league could
    take on such matters" (Jim Thomas, ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH,
    12/16).  Tagliabue was asked about an NFL-backed, football-only
    stadium in L.A. and why the league wouldn't help other teams such
    as the Bucs: "The conditions in Los Angeles are unique and those
    are the conditions that led us to set forth the concept for
    league involvement of a Super Bowl-related stadium in L.A.  At
    this juncture, I don't think those conditions exist in any other
    coummunity" (Vito Stellino, Baltimore SUN, 12/16).

    Print | Tags: Franchises, NFL, LA Rams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

         NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue held a national conference
    call yesterday in which he said the league is optimistic the
    Buccaneers will stay in Tampa. Tagliabue responded to statements
    by Orioles Owner Peter Angelos, who Wednesday called the Bucs
    "eminently moveable."  Tagliabue: "We're more optimistic in terms
    of the Tampa community keeping the team than Peter Angelos seems
    to be. ... (Angelos) seems to feel the team in Tampa Bay hasn't
    been supported. ... Our attitude has been quite different from
    that.  We feel the Super Bowl games played in Tampa were
    extremely well-supported."  Tagliabue did say the league would
    not become involved in financing a new stadium in Tampa or
    helping with renovations (Stroud & Testerman, ST. PETERSBURG
    TIMES, 12/16).
         CROSS-OWNERSHIP:  NFL policy prohibits cross-ownership of
    other major pro sports franchises, and Yankees Owner George
    Steinbrenner and Angelos would "need a major change in league
    rules if they want to buy the Bucs."  The league has ruled that
    Wayne Huizenga (who also owns the Panthers and Marlins) can run
    the Dolphins for two years, although technically the team is
    owned by a trust until June 1, '96.  Tagliabue will review the
    Dolphins ownership at that time and could force the trust to buy
    Huizenga's stake.  Browns Owner Art Modell:  "The rules against
    cross-ownership are pretty strict.  There's a lot of sentiment
    not to change our rules."  Tagliabue said "it would not be
    possible for an owner in another sports to purchase" an NFL team,
    "unless there was some type of interim adjustment made," but he
    added, "We are continuing to reasses it."  Steinbrenner would not
    comment on cross ownership, but Angelos "hinted" he would sell
    the Orioles if necessary:  "I think we'd be willing to accept the
    conditions given to Huizenga, where they'd tell him he might have
    to divest himself" (Joe Henderson, TAMPA TRIBUNE, 12/16).
         KING GEORGE SPEAKS:  Steinbrenner on his interest in the
    team: "(We) are deadly serious about this, if we can make it have
    economic sense. ... We have the finances and the desire, but I
    cannot recommend a bad deal to my investors" (Tom McEwen, TAMPA
    TRIBUNE, 12/16).

    Print | Tags: Baltimore Orioles, Cleveland Browns, Miami Marlins, Franchises, Miami Dolphins, New York Yankees, NFL, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

         Season-tickets sales are not the only requirement that the
    Raptors and Grizzlies must meet to keep the NBA happy.
    Apparently "firm arena plans and broadcasting deals" also have to
    be finalized by the end of the year.  One well-informed league-
    level source told Neil Campbell of the Toronto GLOBE & MAIL that,
    "technically, the league could still revoke if all the terms
    aren't met.  There's a lot of impatience with the people in
    Toronto and their arena situation.  They don't have a TV deal
    done yet in Vancouver but that is not as serious as the Toronto
    situation."  The Raptors want to have their arena at a downtown
    site, but there is no guarantee that the problem would be solved
    by December 31.  In Vancouver, local TV rights have not been
    sold, but owner Arthur Griffiths' family has "extensive broadcast
    holdings throughout B.C. and Alberta," and the team is
    "apparently headed" for a radio deal with an FM station owned by
    the Griffiths.  One broadcast source reports that the Grizzlies
    are asking a C$1 million for the radio rights (Toronto GLOBE &
    MAIL, 12/16).

    Print | Tags: Franchises, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, NBA, Toronto Raptors
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