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THE LATEST ON THE RAMS' MOVE: LET'S MAKE A DEAL
Published March 15, 1995
Despite Commissioner Paul Tagliabue's recommendation that NFL owners vote against the Rams move, the "tone changed" in Phoenix yesterday as the Rams and owners tried to negotiate a settlement that would compensate the league for lost revenues. Save-the-Rams Leader Leigh Steinberg: "I'm frustrated. I feel our message is not getting through" (Steve Bisheff, ORANGE COUNTRY REGISTER, 3/15). The league has reportedly asked the Rams for $25M, while the Rams are "considering an offer" of $13M. Browns Owner Art Modell: "The Rams have not been given any figure (yet). Television remains a major factor" (Michele Himmelberg, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 3/15). The Rams would like to spread the payment over 40 years, while the league would like it in four years (Plaschke & Simers, L.A. TIMES, 3/15). ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported the Rams expect the league will want $20-30M to approve the move, and they are willing to negotiate because they also want to stay out of court ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 3/14). In Boston, Jack Craig reports that Fox will seek a rebate of $14M for '95 if the Rams move, $500,000 per team. But it "would not be much of a hit, considering that each team is scheduled to receive $42 million from Fox over the last three years of Fox' contract" (BOSTON GLOBE, 3/14). ALL THOSE IN FAVOR: 49ers President Carmen Policy and Chargers Owner Alex Spanos spoke in favor of the move during meetings that lasted over five hours (I.J. Rosenberg, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 3/15). Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones: "Right now my vote is up in the air. I'm very much for teams having the right to make their own decisions ... We need an NFC team in Los Angeles" ("Up Close," ESPN, 3/14). YOU PROMISE? Will Leigh Steinberg and Save the Rams "wangle a promise for an NFC expansion franchise in the next three years?," asks Steve Bisheff of the ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER. Bisheff predicts that owners will approve the Rams move in order to keep their leverage to build new stadiums, and adds if an L.A. expansion bid is approved, Save-the-Rams would want Disney's Michael Eisner to head up the team (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 3/15).