SBD/23/Franchises

NFL OWNERS MAKE RAIDERS TOP PRIORITY AT MEETINGS

     A proposal that would bring L.A. a second pro football team
in '98 and two Super Bowls to a new stadium at Holloywood Park
"is expected to be formalized" by the NFL's finance committee
today, according to Bill Plaschke in today's L.A. TIMES.  If
accepted, the proposal would "pave the way" for the construction
of a $200M stadium "that would house the Raiders and an
undetermined existing franchise."  However, Plaschke writes that
"one final hurdle" exists:  a $20M loan requested by Hollywood
Park officials, who will build the stadium along with the
Raiders.  The league "steadfastly" refuses to make the loan, but
instead will offer Hollywood Park as much as $20M in relocation
fees from the stadium's second tenant -- money that would not
come until '98.  Oilers Owner Bud Adams:  "We realize the
importance of the Los Angeles market, and we're doing everything
we can to help."  Plaschke notes that by doing this, the owners
are apparently willing to "snub" Orange County and Anaheim
Stadium -- despite a reported "letter of interest" from Disney
CEO Michael Eisner to the NFL (L.A. TIMES, 5/23).  In Atlanta,
Len Pasquarelli writes, "The league now is proposing a
partnership some owners regard as tantamount to dancing with the
devil."  The league reportedly will offer various "financial
enticements" to Raiders Owner Al Davis and Hollywood Park CFO
R.D. Hubbard.  Among them are $25M in revenues from luxury suites
and/or permanent seat licenses, along with the promise of 10,000
tickets for Super Bowl games staged at the new facility (ATLANTA
CONSTITUTION, 5/23).  Davis is expected to keep the Raiders at
the L.A. Coliseum for the '96 and '97 seasons.
     ALSO ON THE AGENDA:  Chiefs Owner Lamar Hunt has proposed
awarding the conference championships to cities through bidding,
like the Super Bowl (N.Y. TIMES, 5/23).
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