SBD/7/Franchises

RIGAS AND PIRATES CLOSE TO A DEAL

     The Pirates and Adelphia Communications Corp. Chair John
Rigas have "basically agreed on financial terms" for a deal, but
the sides have not agreed on who will pay the team's bills this
season.  Team owners are "generally agreeable" to Rigas' $85.15M
offer, but the team anticipates $13M-$15M in losses this season,
and owners want Rigas to pay for "debts incurred while they wait
for major-league owners to ratify the sale, a move that could
take 4-8 months."  Rigas has agreed to "assume" $60M of the
current owners' debt and $27M owed to the city's Urban
Redevelopment Authority, but he is "hesitant" to take on more of
the team's liability (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 2/7).
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Franchises, Pittsburgh Pirates

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