SBD/16/Leagues Governing Bodies

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         The Lions and Cowboys will continue to host their
    traditional Thanksgiving Day games.  A proposal by Chiefs Owner
    Lamar Hunt never came to a vote.  There is "no assurance" the
    game will stay in Detroit after next season, but the team
    believes "enough support was gained to keep the game in Detroit
    for the foreseeable future" (DETROIT NEWS, 3/16).... "They may go
    kicking and screaming," but the 49ers are expected to comply with
    the league's request that they play the Broncos in Tokyo on
    August 6.  The teams are already scheduled to play in the
    exhibition opener.  Most likely, they will have to play back-to-
    back, with the 49ers in Denver on July 29 (Ira Miller, S.F.
    CHRONICLE, 3/16).

    Print | Tags: Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Kansas City Chiefs, Leagues and Governing Bodies, San Francisco 49ers

         Several star players held a press conference in Orlando, FL,
    to "reaffirm their solidarity," express their support for their
    union leadership and discuss the proposed "barnstorming" tour
    which would start in April if the season opens with replacements.
    The MLBPA would not release specifics on the tour "but said it is
    working on such things as sponsors, securing dates and stadiums,
    and the legal issues of using players under contract" (Marc
    Topkin, ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 3/16).  MLBPA Licensing Dir Judy
    Heeter, on the tour:  "We never viewed it as something we would
    do to be inflammatory.  It's our way of putting baseball back on
    the field if we can't do it any other way" (Murray Chass, N.Y.
    TIMES, 3/16).  The players were told that Reebok had withdrawn as
    tour sponsor (Chuck Johnson, USA TODAY, 3/16).
         RIPKEN FACTOR:  MLBPA Exec Dir Don Fehr said that Cal
    Ripken's consecutive game streak should be preserved because
    replacement games should not count in the standings.  MLBPA
    General Counsel Gene Orza:  "You don't draw lines in the sand in
    collective bargaining, but that's a line in the sand.  You can
    take it to the bank that scab games will not count in the
    standings.  The players will not go back to work if they do."
    Ripken was at the press conference (Peter Schmuck, Baltimore SUN,
    3/16).  Management sources say the owners "certainly would not
    agree to eliminate replacement records," citing the potential of
    lawsuits from refund-seeking fans (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST,
         WEEKEND OUTLOOK:  No talks are scheduled, although Special
    Mediator William Usery is pushing for this weekend.  There "may
    even be a private meeting" between Fehr and Bud Selig (Mark
    Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 3/16).  MLBPA attorney Lauren Rich:  "I
    believe we are at a crossroads.  If we don't get a deal in the
    next 10 days, you are looking at a renewed era of endless
    litigation" (Baltimore SUN, 3/16).
         PROGRESS ON ANOTHER FRONT:  The locked-out umpires have
    withdrawn the unfair labor practices charges they had filed
    against the AL and NL ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 3/15).
         NOTHING TO SPIT ABOUT:  MLB announced it will continue to
    enforce a ban on all tobacco products throughout the minor
    leagues -- from Rookie League to AAA.  MLB Dir of Minor League
    Ops Jimmie Lee Solomon:  "We instituted the ban because we were
    concerned about the health of the people in our organizations, as
    well as the image they portray" (MLB).       NEWS & NOTES:  The
    Phillies took out a full-page ad in the St. Pete Times, the Tampa
    Tribune and USA Today addressed to the Harp Family of Largo,
    Florida.  The family is a fixture at spring training.  The ad
    reads in part:  "We are playing baseball. ... Make a day of it at
    the park, like you've always done" (PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS,
    3/15)....The Indians announced a modified policy giving any paid-
    in-full season plan holder the option to cancel their seats for
    the upcoming season and retain the opportunity to repurchase for
    '96 with a per seat deposit (Indians)....The Red Sox will
    discount ticket prices 50% for April home games, regardless of
    whether the strike is settled.  The team says 94% of its season-
    ticket holders have renewed (HARTFORD COURANT, 3/16). ....The
    Rangers have sold about 21,000 tickets for their opener against
    the Yankees.  At this time last year, the Ballpark (41,219
    capacity) was sold out (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 3/16)....Giants
    Owner Peter Magowan predicts that the season will start with
    replacements.  Magowan said, if anything, the owners have
    "hardened over the last few months," and that they know what to
    expect from replacement games -- "a third to a fourth of our
    regular attendance."  Glenn Dickey writes, what is "scary" is
    that Magowan is a "moderate in the baseball world" (S.F.
    CHRONICLE, 3/16).

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch, Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians, ESPN, Leagues and Governing Bodies, MLB, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Reebok, Walt Disney

         "While Canada is still hockey's soul, the country is being
    buried in a new era of American big money and big markets,"
    writes Michael Farber in the current issue of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED.
    Thus far, teams in American warm weather markets are doing well
    at the gate after the 103-day lockout, while Canadian teams are
    not.  Calgary, Vancouver, Winnipeg and Edmonton are playing to
    only 82% capacities, while the NHL sites in the U.S. Sun Belt and
    CA are filling 92% of their seats.  Quebec, with the league's
    best record, is only drawing 90%, after getting 98% while having
    the league's worst record five years ago.  NHL Commissioner Gary
    Bettman:  "We're the national sport of Canada, not the national
    sport of the U.S.  No matter how large we grow, we won't turn our
    back on our roots.  And our roots are up in Canada."  But with
    rumors of Nordiques and Jets' moves increasing, Bettman says the
    NHL will not stay in Winnipeg and Quebec if they don't get new
    arenas:  "I don't view this as blackmail.  My discussions with
    the mayors (of Quebec and Winnipeg) have pointed out that if they
    want to have a sports franchise in the 21st century, they must
    appropriately house them."  The Canadian government, involved in
    cultural protection of Canadian movies, TV and magazines along
    with business protection, has done little about protecting
    hockey.  Parliament member Dennis Mills says he will convene a
    hockey task force of government members by the end of April:
    "It's time we look at it as an industry.  If we thought General
    Motors was going to pull a van plant out of Oshawa (Ont.), we'd
    go crazy and make sure it didn't happen" (SI, 3/20 issue).  For
    more on NHL attendance, see the THE DAILY's Turnstile Tracker,
    featuring the NHL's Eastern Conference.

    Print | Tags: Leagues and Governing Bodies, New York Jets, NHL, Sports Illustrated

         NHLPA Exec Dir Bob Goodenow and NHL Commissioner Gary
    Bettman have "agreed in principle" to allow NHL players to
    participate in the '98 Winter Games in Nagano.  The two met with
    IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch and officials from the IIHF
    in Lussanne, Switzerland.  NHL VP of Public Relations Arthur
    Pincus:  "There is a series of issues that has to be worked out
    before a definite commitment can be made.  We're operating on a
    timetable of mid-July for a final decision."  The NHL would have
    to stop its season for 10-12 days to accommodate the Games.  The
    possibility of staging of a World Cup Tournament in '97 was also
    discussed (George Gross, TORONTO SUN, 3/16).

    Print | Tags: IOC, Leagues and Governing Bodies, NHL
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