SBD/13/Franchises

ITT AND CABLEVISION CLEARED FOR MSG DEAL

     Cablevision and ITT have been given approval to buy Madison
Square Garden from Viacom.  The U.S. Department of Justice has
approved the proposed $1.075B acquisition "without requiring any
modifications to the sale."  MSG is the parent company for the
Knicks and Rangers, and the deal still needs the backing of the
NHL and the NBA to be finalized.  Teri Washington, a spokesperson
for the NBA, said it was not clear whether a vote on the transfer
of the Knicks will be held at the next Board of Governors meeting
on February 13.  A team sale requires 3/4 approval from the NBA's
27 team representatives.  A spokesperson for the NHL said a vote
by that league could be "months away" (Elizabeth Sanger, N.Y.
NEWSDAY, 1/13).
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