SBD/5/Facilities Venues

SPURS JOIN THE LONG LIST OF TEAMS LOOKING FOR A NEW ARENA

     Spurs Board Chair Robert McDermott said yesterday the team
needs a new arena "to avoid economic pressures that might lead to
the NBA franchise's departure from San Antonio," writes Jerry
Briggs in this morning's SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS.  McDermott,
who said his statements should not be taken as "a threat":  "San
Antonio in the long run needs an up-to-date arena.  Otherwise the
team will probably go (to another city).  When investors bought
the team, they didn't want to be in an unsuitable arena (at the
Alamodome) forever."  The Spurs signed a ten-year lease with the
city to play at the then-new Alamodome in '93 after playing at
the Hemisfair Arena for 20 years.  McDermott, who said he is
"looking beyond" the team's current successes, said the club
cannot fund a new facility.  According to a Spurs official, the
team "made up to $4 million" after last season, "including $3
million" during their playoff run.  San Antonio Mayor Bill
Thornton said he doesn't think a new arena is necessary:  "I
really regret that during this time when I am asking the city to
pull together, that we are faced with an issue of what sounds
like, 'Build a new arena or we'll move'" (SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-
NEWS, 7/5).
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Facilities, NBA, San Antonio Spurs

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