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  • POHLAD TO HOLD ONTO TWINS?; WOLVES STICK WITH OGDEN

         Several baseball sources said they expect Twins Owner Carl
    Pohlad to remain as the team's owner for "at least a few more
    years," according to Jim Souhan in this morning's Minneapolis
    STAR TRIBUNE.  Speculation exist that Pohlad is looking to sell
    the team after the strike ends, but sources think he will hold
    onto the team because he "wants to play a key roll" in the
    building of a new baseball stadium in the area (Minneapolis STAR
    TRIBUNE, 3/17).
         T-WOLVES SIGN WITH OGDEN: The Timberwolves signed a 30-year
    arena-use agreement with Ogden Entertainment Services. Ogden has
    been managing the facility since it opened in '90, but new
    negotiations were required when the Target Center was officially
    sold last week (Steve Aschburner, Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE,
    3/17).
    

    Print | Tags: Franchises, Minnesota Timberwolves, Minnesota Twins
  • SHARKS HOPE TO GET CAUGHT IN THE WEB

         The Sharks will launch their own site on the Internet today
    which the team hopes will help them "communicate directly to its
    fans locally and around the world." The Sharks' home page is
    accessible through the World Wide Web at http://www.sj-sharks.com
    (SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, 3/17).
    

    Print | Tags: Franchises, San Jose Sharks
  • TAGLIABUE WANTS TEAMS IN ST. LOUIS AND L.A.; RAMS TO COURT?

         The NFL told Rams Owner Georgia Frontiere that for the Rams
    move to get league approval, she would have to sell the team,
    according to a report in today's L.A. TIMES.  Rams President John
    Shaw said yesterday that the league wanted Frontiere to sell her
    share to 30% shareholder Stan Kroenke.  They "also talked about
    prohibiting Frontiere from leaving the team to her heirs."  Shaw
    called it "outrageous" and said he told the committee he thought
    it was punitive and "would take them to the wall on that."  Shaw
    said by Wednesday the issue was off the table, as he felt the
    league had been advised by "counsel of their outrageous legal
    position."  NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue said the sale of the
    Rams was not discussed, but Browns Owner Art Model admitted it
    was "an option she should explore."  Modell: "I don't want to see
    her get hurt in this process."  Modell said that helping "phase
    in a new owner" would be a "step in the right direction" (T.J.
    Simers, L.A. TIMES, 3/17).
         LAWYERS, GUNS, AND MONEY:  Shaw said officials from St.
    Louis and the Rams will meet to discuss strategy.  Shaw: "We will
    be aggressive. We (have) no other alternative" (Rick Gosselin,
    DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/17).  There are no plans to seek an
    immediate injunction that would permit the team to move
    immediately (Len Pasquarelli, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 3/17).  The
    team will likely file suit by March 31 and Shaw believes they
    could win up to $2B in damages (Vito Stellino, Baltimore SUN,
    3/17).  Max Blecher, who represented the L.A. Coliseum Commission
    in the Raiders case, will direct the team's legal strategy.
    Blecher called the NFL "arrogant":  "It's great to bring them
    down."  One Rams official: "We're going for their throat" (L.A.
    TIMES, 3/17).
         FALLOUT:  Shaw confirmed the Rams offered the league $25M,
    but said owners were not made aware of the proposal by Tagliabue.
    Tagliabue called that "absolutely untrue":  "I said there would
    be a sharing of gross receipts. ... 34% of $74 million. You
    figure it out" (Leonard Shapiro, WASHINGTON POST, 3/17).  One
    owner: "The Rams were arrogant and greedy.  They never really
    wanted to try and work something out."  Patriots Owner Robert
    Kraft said he came to the meeting prepared to vote for the move,
    but later changed his mind.  Kraft:  "The Rams in St. Louis ...
    will be making $25 million while I'd be losing $10 million.  In
    1999 there is no salary cap and what kind of chance would I have
    trying to compete against that" (Will McDonough, BOSTON GLOBE,
    3/16).    MAKE EVERYBODY HAPPY:  Tagliabue said the goal of the
    league is to have teams in both L.A. and St. Louis in "a short
    amount" of time.  Whether that "meant some sort of compromise
    might lead to another vote, another round of expansion, or even
    that a different team might move to St. Louis in the near future
    wasn't clear" (SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, 3/17).  Tagliabue
    mentioned the possibility of the Bengals relocating to St. Louis
    (Jim Thomas, ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 3/17).  Gordon Forbes
    reports the Rams and the league will settle out of court, as the
    NFL isn't "about to allow a new $260 million dome to sit empty in
    St. Louis."  To "satisfy" Fox, Forbes believes the NFL will place
    another team in Orange County and will help renovate Anaheim
    Stadium or fund a new facility, "maybe in Long Beach."  There
    could be "hurry-up, two-team expansion" in the late '90's.  Or,
    "more likely," the move of a team with a "stadium problem," such
    as the Bengals or Browns (USA TODAY, 3/17).
    

    Print | Tags: Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Franchises, New England Patriots, News Corp./Fox, NFL, Oakland Raiders, St. Louis Rams
  • TWO PROSPECTIVE OWNERS COME FORWARD FOR SAN DIEGO'S IHL TEAM

         Two L.A.-based businessman have made a refundable deposit to
    the IHL for an expansion team that would play next year in San
    Diego.  Steve Perry and Howard Silber met with City Manager Jack
    McGrory "for the third time in as many weeks and came away
    cautiously optimistic." Silber said there "was a good chance the
    IHL will be in San Diego next season."  The one "sticking point"
    could be the city's unwillingness to guarantee an IHL franchise
    the chance to play in the proposed new arena downtown.  City
    Mayor Susan Golding claims the city needs an NHL or NBA franchise
    "as the anchor tenant" to make construction financially viable
    (Trotter & Bloom, SAN DIEGO UNION TRIBUNE, 3/16).
    

    Print | Tags: Franchises, NBA, NHL
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