SBD/29/Franchises

DEVILS LEASE MADE PUBLIC; ANTI-NASHVILLE DOMINATES PARADE

     The NJSEA made public its lease with the Devils yesterday
"as part of its legal fight" to keep the team from moving to
Nashville, according to Richard Sandomir in this morning's N.Y.
TIMES.  The lease, which the authority had refused to disclose
previously, was the subject of a lawsuit by three area newspapers
who claimed they had a right to have access to the document.
     KEY CLAUSES:  The NJSEA raised the Devils' portion of luxury
suite, parking and concession revenues from the 25% agreed upon
in the original '82 lease to 34.2% in '91; the team must pay the
NJSEA $25,000 per game and 12% of gross receipts over $250,000 --
 a number that has increased every year since '91; the team keeps
100% of dasherboard ads and must restrict ads that compete with
permanent signage in the arena; the Devils pay the NJSEA 5% of
their radio and TV rights fees (the team paid 10% from '82-'86);
if the team is sold for more than $50M, ownership must pay the
authority "a sliding percentage of the take" -- which started at
20% from '91-'93 and ends at 5% from '99 on (N.Y. TIMES, 6/29).
     COURT CLAIMS:  Besides the lease, the NJSEA filed documents
in NJ Superior Court in Hackensack that outline "11 acts by the
authority designed to help the Devils and boost the value of the
franchise," write Hirsch & Fitzgerald in this morning's Bergen
RECORD.  The NJSEA is seeking an injunction to block a move by
the team.  NJSEA President Robert Mulcahy outlined several acts -
- including amending the team's lease three times since '82,
allowing the team to defer repayment of "an undisclosed
outstanding debt" to the NJSEA, cutting the authority's share of
media revenues and giving the team a luxury box -- in an
attempted to demonstrate the relationship.  The NJSEA also
indicates in "the hundreds of pages of documents filed Wednesday"
that the team has been in debt to the authority "almost from the
day the team moved to the meadowlands."  Mulcahy also notes that
the authority "purchased up to 1,000 season tickets to boost the
gross receipts for the Devils' benefit," spent $4.5M on a
restaurant for season ticket holders, and spent a total of $10.3M
on screens and scoreboards and other expenses for the team
(Bergen RECORD, 6/29).
     RUMOR MONGERS:  Reports by Mike Francesa on NYC's WFAN-radio
that Devils Owner John McMullen had already accepted a check for
$20M from Nashville officials and that Devils players had been
told they were moving were denied by all sides yesterday.
Gaylord Entertainment Chief Dick Evans, Nashville's "official
agent" in attempting to secure a team, told this morning's
TENNESSEAN that "no money has changed hands."  Devils players
also denied they knew of a move (Coleman & Ippolito, Nashville
TENNESSEAN, 6/29).
     WHAT THEY'RE SAYING:  In this morning's NEWSDAY, Joe Gergen
writes that the team and NJSEA have turned the Cup into "a
political football": "For all the involved parties to agree on
terms that would stabilize the franchise in New Jersey may
require an accord on the order of the U.S.-Japan trade treaty"
(N.Y. NEWSDAY, 6/29).  In today's N.Y. POST, both Jay Greenberg
and Larry Brooks report that control of Byrne Arena is what the
team desires.  Greenberg: "But we still don't know if [McMullen
will] accept less to keep the Devils in North Jersey" (N.Y. POST,
6/29).
     WHAT'S ON TAP:  The two sides meet today, both in court and
at the bargaining table (Larry Brooks, N.Y. POST, 6/29).
     MERCHANDISING HIT:  At last night's Cup celebration,
attended by an estimated 30,000, "Nashville Sucks" hats and
shirts were big hits (Jeff Legwold, TENNESSEAN, 6/29).
Return to top
Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug