SBD/12/Leagues Governing Bodies

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  • BASEBALL STILL HELD HOSTAGE -- DAY 154: A CAPITOL AFFAIR

         In a meeting with WASHINGTON POST reporters, acting MLB
    Commissioner Bud Selig said that he expects each of the 28 clubs
    to field a replacement team for the '95 season -- that includes
    both the Orioles and Blue Jays.  MLB General Counsel Chuck
    O'Connor:  "We have a problem in Toronto that is not just legal -
    - the question of Labatt's being comfortable with using a so-
    called loophole ... [that] might be viewed as an affront by the
    Canadian people."  Selig and several owners were in Washington
    this week to meet with members of Congress as well as Labor
    Secretary Robert Reich.  Over the past two days, owners have met
    with 35 members of Congress, including House Speaker Newt
    Gingrich, Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole and Senate Judiciary
    Chair Orrin Hatch (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 1/12).
         NHL EFFECTS:  MLBPA General Counsel Gene Orza: "The biggest
    benefit of the hockey settlement is I no longer have to hear
    [Rockies Owner] Jerry McMorris and Bud Selig give me the ultimate
    non sequitur of these negotiations:  'We want a salary cap and
    you'll notice the only sports playing have salary caps.'"  MLBPA
    Exec Dir Don Fehr noted that the NHL did not implement its own
    system: "I think clearly because they're covered by the antitrust
    laws and they didn't think they could get away with it."  But
    MLB's O'Connor countered: "I believe it's incorrect to hold that
    the clubs could not implement the salary cap proposal if the
    antitrust laws applied to baseball" (Murray Chass, N.Y. TIMES,
    1/12).
         THE SEARCH FOR PLAYERS:  Red Sox CEO John Harrington said
    the clubs' operations committee has compiled a list of 800
    players who were active in the major or minor leagues within the
    past 18 months, but are not with any organization now (Mark
    Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 1/12).  Because the union had its strike
    certified, the Immigration and Naturalization Service will not
    grant a visa required of any foreign player signed to a major
    league contract -- even if he will not be used as a replacement
    (Rod Beaton, USA TODAY, 1/12).
         A WORD OF WARNING:  Red Sox Danny Darwin said that he is
    "among a growing number of players who will be closely watching
    for signs of loyalty" from coaches, managers and trainers, "all
    of whom pay union dues and collect licensing money" (Nick
    Cafardo, BOSTON GLOBE, 1/11).
    

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch, Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, Colorado Rockies, Labatt Brewing, Leagues and Governing Bodies, MLB, NHL, Toronto Blue Jays
  • COULD LPGA NAME ITS FIRST WOMAN COMMISSIONER?

         Retiring LPGA Commissioner Charlie Mechem, at the eve of the
    LPGA's first '95 event: "I don't think there is any question that
    someday there will be a woman commissioner.  But I don't get any
    sense that this time it must be a woman."  An 11 person search
    committee, including eight players, has been formed to find a new
    commissioner (Steve Hershey, USA TODAY, 1/12).  According to the
    LPGA, the '95 season will be "its most successful season ever."
    The schedule includes 38 events totaling over $24M in prize
    money.  In addition, 26 tournaments will enjoy TV coverage   --
    that's the most televised events ever for the LPGA in one season.
    The added TV coverage includes a few events that will appear on
    The Golf Channel (LPGA).
    

    Print | Tags: Leagues and Governing Bodies, LPGA
  • GOODWILL GAMES WILL NOT RETURN TO RUSSIA IN 2002

         Goodwill Games President Jack Kelly announced that the Games
    will remain a 16-day single-city event, but said that they do not
    intend to return to Russia in 2002.  Kelly said former and future
    Olympic city hopefuls like Beijing, China, Osaka, Japan and Cape
    Town, South Africa, have expressed a "great deal of interest" in
    hosting the games in 2002.  The prospects for those cities as
    hosts were discussed at a meeting among Kelly, Turner Sports
    President Harvey Schiller and TBS Chair Ted Turner.  Kelly:
    "There's a sentiment that for the Games and Turner Sports'
    growth, we might be better off going to a new region."  No
    changes were made to the format of the Games, although Kelly left
    open the possibility that organizers might "tinker with the
    number of days or sports at a later date."  New York will host
    the '98 Games.  Kelly said the prospect of winter Goodwill Games,
    which is "gaining momentum under the Turner tent, was not
    discussed" (Joe Drape, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 1/12).
    

    Print | Tags: Leagues and Governing Bodies, TBS/TNT, Time Warner
  • HOCKEY RELEASED! DEAL ALMOST DONE; RATIFICATION AWAITS

         The NHLPA recommended that its members accept the owners'
    latest contract offer.  The union will now conduct a ratification
    vote, and players "are expected to confirm" the six-year CBA by
    noon tomorrow.  NHLPA Exec Dir Bob Goodenow:  "We have come to a
    conclusion that both sides can live with and now we can grow
    together."  NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman:  "I'm thrilled, happy,
    relieved, take any emotion you want on the spectrum. ... It's
    important that the league and players come together" (Toronto
    GLOBE & MAIL, 1/12).  ESPN's Bob Ley: "Like Jason who, yes, wore
    a goalie mask, the season could not be killed" ("SportsCenter,"
    1/11).
         NOT A DONE DEAL?  Many players were reluctant to predict
    easy passage for the agreement among the union membership.
    Ranger Mike Hudson:  "I wouldn't be surprised if the 'No' vote
    was as high as 30 percent" (Mark Everson, N.Y. POST, 1/12).
    Among the most "contentious" issue remaining is back pay (Dave
    Luecking, ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 1/12).  Other questions the
    players are asking:  "How will their salaries be computed?  Will
    they be prorated against their base pay for an 84-game season or
    be based on the number of days in the coming partial season. ...
    Will current players' statuses be grandfathered?" (Jim Smith,
    NEWSDAY, 1/12).  Blackhawk Jeremy Roenick:  "There's a lot of
    things unanswered.  It's going to come down to one or two votes,
    it's going to be very tight" (ESPN, 1/11).
         WHAT NEXT?  For the owners, revenue sharing looms as the
    next major challenge.  The issue "is certain to rekindle
    animosities."  Oilers Owner Peter Pocklington:  "I have NHL
    Commissioner Gary Bettman's word this will be addressed at the
    next board meeting.  And that's good enough for me" (Shoalts &
    Milner, Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 1/12).  James Christie writes that
    during the lockout, the "gap between the NHL's small-market and
    major-market teams went from being a cleft to a rift to a chasm"
    (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 1/12).  Canucks President Pat Quinn:
    "It's an owners' problem, not a players' problem" (VANCOUVER SUN,
    1/12).
    

    Print | Tags: Edmonton Oilers, ESPN, Leagues and Governing Bodies, NHL, Canucks Sports and Entertainment, Vancouver Canucks, Walt Disney
  • HOCKEY RELEASED! WINNERS, LOSERS AND OTHER FALLOUT

         Reactions on the deal from several NHL cities:
         IN NEW YORK, MIKE LUPICA credits Bettman with saving the
    season:  "It does not make Bettman some kind of hero.  He never
    lost a paycheck here.  He had to work for his votes every step of
    the way.  But if he did not rough up Goodenow, if he did not
    rough up his owners sometimes, especially the owners who were
    perfectly willing to shut down this season for good, then hockey
    is gone" (N.Y. NEWSDAY, 1/12). THE N.Y. POST scores it "Owners By
    Knockout," but LARRY BROOKS scores it "E.G.  Error, Goodenow"
    (N.Y. POST, 1/12).  RANGERS GOALIE GLENN HEALY:  "We got killed,
    but we had to do this in order to play hockey this year" (Mult.,
    1/12).
         IN TAMPA, LIGHTNING GOVERNOR DAVID LEFEVRE:  "We didn't get
    everything we wanted, but it is a good deal for us.  We've got a
    system that will slow down the escalation of salaries.  The only
    gain they made was in unrestricted free agency.  And most players
    retire by the time they are 32" (Cammy Clark, ST. PETERSBURG
    TIMES, 1/12).
         IN DETROIT, CYNTHIA LAMBERT & LYNN HENNING:  "The players
    gave up a ton, but they can still be considered the victors.
    Why?  NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman promised the owners a salary
    cap."  RED WINGS OWNER MIKE ILITCH:  "I'll go along with this.
    You have to respect what the whole group wants, but this isn't
    going to work, not in the long run" (DETROIT NEWS, 1/12).
         IN CHICAGO, BLACKHAWKS GM BOB PULFORD:  "I think the reason
    we went to the lockout was because we needed a deterrent on
    salaries and we didn't get that" (Robert Markus, CHICAGO TRIBUNE,
    1/12).
         IN SAN JOSE, SHARKS DIR OF HOCKEY OPS DEAN LOMBARDI:  "We're
    back at the starting gate and our wheels aren't spinning yet.
    But I don't think it's irreparable harm; it just means our jobs
    are harder" (S.J. MERCURY NEWS, 1/12).
         IN DALLAS, TERRY EGAN writes, "In a sense, there is a new
    beginning for hockey in Dallas."  STARS OWNER JIM LITES:  "I hope
    it's a mending time" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 1/12).
         IN TORONTO, MAPLE LEAFS PRESIDENT & GM CLIFF FLETCHER:  "I
    think I can say without going off the deep end, it probably will
    be the best collective bargaining agreement of all the four major
    professional sports.  It'll be the only one that doesn't include
    a tax or a cap and does include some arbitration and some free
    agency for veteran players."  DAVID SHOALTS & BRIAN MILNER write
    that the consensus is that Bettman "has emerged as a big winner,"
    but that opinion on Goodenow "is much more divided."  The players
    may be the "biggest losers" (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 1/12).  AL
    STRACHAN writes that, by the time the deal expires, the NHL "will
    no longer be the dominant hockey league in the world. ... As long
    as the players have nowhere else to play, then they have to put
    up with the salary limitation imposed by the new CBA.  But there
    is every indication that the players may soon have other
    options."  Strachan notes the IHL and a possible European league
    (TORONTO SUN, 1/12).
         IN BOSTON, BRUINS PRESIDENT & GM HARRY SINDEN:  "I think
    [the fans] lost.  I don't think the sport was well-served by a
    103-day shutdown."  BRUIN CAM NEELY:  "It's pretty evident the
    owners basically want to control you from the time you're 18
    until the time you're 32."  HERALD headline:  "NHLPA bails out
    owners" (BOSTON HERALD, 1/12).  Kevin Paul Dupont writes the
    players "got what they wished for and now will have to live with
    it. ... They held off a cap and slipped on a straitjacket"
    (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/12).
         IN WASHINGTON, TONY KORNHEISER writes, "The owners lost.
    The players lost.  The fans lost.  The NBA won." CAPITALS
    PRESIDENT DICK PATRICK:  "I'd say the players won. ... We didn't
    accomplish what we were after" (WASHINGTON POST, 1/12).  CAPS
    OWNER ABE POLLIN:  "I believe we could have gotten a deal that
    would have been fairer, not better but fairer, for the owners as
    well as the players" (Dave Fay, WASHINGTON TIMES, 1/12).
         IN ST. LOUIS, BLUES' BRENDAN SHANAHAN:  "They bent a little.
    We bent more" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 1/12).
         NHLPA VP MARTY MCSORLEY:  "The players will have to be
    tougher next time, better educated on the issues and more wary of
    the opposition" (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 1/12).
         IN L.A., HELENE ELLIOTT writes, "It wasn't worth it.  Nobody
    won" (L.A. TIMES, 1/12).  WAYNE GRETZKY:  "There's still a free
    market, that was most important and I think it was vital for Mr.
    Goodenow to take that back to the players union. ... [The owners]
    didn't get a salary cap which they wanted in the beginning, but I
    think that they really got a drag on salaries" ("SportsCenter,
    ESPN, 1/11).
         IN OTTAWA, ROY MACGREGOR calls Goodenow a "big-time winner.
    ... Goodenow took on, and beat, the salary cap.  The owners were
    able to take away some, but not nearly what they had counted on."
    Bettman had "three months of victory, two days of being kicked in
    the stomach.  He took charge, the owners took it back" (OTTAWA
    CITIZEN, 1/12).
         OILERS OWNER PETER POCKLINGTON, who voted against the deal:
    "Gary [Bettman] did a hell of a deal.  He's the greatest breath
    of fresh air this league has ever seen" (Richard Sandomir, N.Y.
    TIMES, 1/12).
         IN VANCOUVER, TONY GALLAGHER writes, "The owners won this
    thing so cleanly it's obscene.  But have they won too much?  Will
    the restrictive rookie salary cap spawn a competitive league
    which so many agents feel is soon to be a reality? ... The IHL
    only has to lift its salary cap and say, 'let's go'" (Vancouver
    PROVINCE, 1/12).    ESPN'S AL MORGANTI:  "This was a matter of
    how much would be taken away from [the players].  They got
    hammered pretty well in arbitration, they got hammered in other
    areas, they got a rookie cap.  On the other hand, the banner they
    chose to fight under was no tax, no cap.  They can have their
    victory dance over that" ("SportsCenter," 1/11).
         HARVARD LAW PROFESSOR PAUL WEILER said the rookie cap will
    have a positive effect on the salary structure for the owners:
    "The salary patterns that are set by those rookies filter all
    through the rest of the salary structure for the veteran players"
    ("World News Tonight," ABC, 1/11).
    

    Print | Tags: ABC, Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, ESPN, Leagues and Governing Bodies, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, NBA, NHL, Palace Sports & Entertainment, San Jose Sharks, Southwest Sports Group, St. Louis Blues, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Walt Disney, Washington Capitals
  • PHOENIX GROUP EXPECTS INVITE INTO MLB WITHIN SIX WEEKS

         According to Suns Owner Jerry Colangelo, who is leading
    Phoenix's effort to land a MLB franchise, "a strong likelihood"
    exists that a franchise will be awarded in the next six weeks.
    Although expansion teams are not expected to play until the '97
    or '98 season, Phoenix must have an answer by April 1, when
    sales-tax legislation that would fund a $253M retractable roof
    stadium expires if a franchise is not awarded.  Colangelo made
    his comments after a meeting with MLBPA Exec Dir Don Fehr, who
    was in Phoenix for a players meeting and gave Colangelo's efforts
    a vote of confidence.  Colangelo, who says he talks with the MLB
    expansion committee almost daily, said he was glad to have Fehr's
    support: "I felt all along that we have an awful lot to offer
    baseball" (Paola Boivin, ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 1/12).
    

    Print | Tags: Leagues and Governing Bodies, MLB, Phoenix Suns
  • WORLD GOLF TOUR -- GOOD IDEA, BAD EXECUTION?

         In the January 16 issue of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Jamie Diaz
    writes that the proposed World Golf tour "may be dead, but the
    idea is alive and well."  Diaz chronicles the promises made by
    World Tour organizers, concluding: "The World Golf Tour was a
    classic case of big hat, no cattle.  While the commitment from
    Fox was real, there were no specific sites, and no signed
    contracts with players were produced."  Diaz is critical of Greg
    Norman for being "oblivious to the prevalent view among players
    that, while the concept of an elite series of events sounded
    good, they would not participate unless the new tour was
    conducted with the cooperation of the PGA Tour."  Diaz notes Seve
    Ballesteros and Nick Faldo criticized it as "slipshod."  Diaz
    says there is hope for the future:  "It's important to realize
    that while the World Golf Tour might be dead, the idea of a world
    golf tour has emerged from the rubble more viable than ever"
    (SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, 1/16 issue),
    

    Print | Tags: Leagues and Governing Bodies, News Corp./Fox, PGA Tour, Sports Illustrated, Time Warner
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