SBD/10/Leagues Governing Bodies

BETTMAN ADDRESSES NHL FRANCHISE MOVEMENT, TV, MARKETING

     In an interview on this morning's "Bloomberg Business News,"
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman was asked if the relocation of the
Jets, and the possible moves of other franchises, would give the
league a "gypsy image."  Bettman: "I hope not -- short-term it
might.  But what we're in the process of doing is dealing with
some of the harsh realities of small markets in Winnipeg and
Quebec, markets that don't have new buildings and that need them
when there is no prospect of getting them.  And hopefully, in the
long-term, if the franchises move, it will the league and those
teams stronger."  Asked about the effect of the lockout, Bettman
noted the improved ratings on Fox and the 3.5% increase in
attendance.  Bettman:  "We had a problem, and we dealt with it
and we got it behind us and our fans have reacted very favorably
to that."  Posed with the notion that the league has never been
successful packaging its stars, Bettman said, "Well, in fact, I
am not sure if that was deliberate.  But our goal is to let
people know who our great athletes are because that will help
sell the game.  But it is the chicken and the egg -- not enough
people know our players, not enough people know our game, and we
have to teach them about both and that is what we are working on"
(PBS, 5/10).
     EDMONTON FEELS A DRAFT:  A local Edmonton TV station
reported that the NHL entry draft will be held in that city.  The
draft was scheduled to be in Winnipeg, but those plans changed
with the Jets move (CP/Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 5/10).
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