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The NFL is conducting hearings with the Oilers and Astrodome USA officials regarding August 19th's canceled preseason game with the Chargers and the $2M in revenues lost due to the cancelation. John Williams reports in this morning's HOUSTON CHRONICLE that this is an unprecedented situation for the league. On Friday, the team asked U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes for permission to tack on the $2M lost from the game to their pending lawsuit against Houston, Harris County and Astrodome USA (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 8/29).
The Devil Rays are planning to hold a fanfest at the Thunderdome this fall and allow fans to make their initial ticket deposits. Bill Chastain reports in this morning's TAMPA TRIBUNE that the team is waiting on ThunderDome improvements to come up with a seating chart. The team reports that it has approximately 33,000 season ticket reservations. Those with suite reservations and potential suite holders have been invited to the stadium to look over options tonight. Rays Managing General Partner Vince Naimoli claims the team has reservations for 54 suites (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 8/29).
The Oakland Football Marketing Association said yesterday that it has sold 10,000 single-game tickets for Sunday's Raiders opener against the Chargers, with only 4,000 still available. Max Muhleman, President of Muhleman Sports Marketing which is handling marketing for the OFMA, added that 2,000 more seat licenses have been sold, bringing the total to 33,000 (OFMA). The remaining 4,000 seats must be sold by Thursday to avoid a TV blackout in the Bay Area (S.F. CHRONICLE, 8/29). Of those seats left in the 45,000-seat Coliseum, about half are being reserved for those delinquent on PSL payments. They will be released today if accounts remain unsettled (OAKLAND TRIBUNE, 8/29). INSIDE THE JOURNEY: In the current INSIDE SPORTS, Glenn Dickey examines the prodigal team's return to Oakland. Dickey reports that Owner Al Davis, who grew up in Brooklyn, used Walter O'Malley's move to L.A. as a blueprint. Dickey adds that even in the late '60s "Davis talked about New York and Los Angeles being the only two cities in the country that were really important. As soon as he got the chance, he jumped to Los Angeles." As far as Davis' refusal of a deal at Hollywood Park, Oakland negotiator Ed De Silva notes that Davis' age was a factor. De Silva: "He had said he wouldn't play in the L.A. Coliseum, so that left Dodger Stadium or Anaheim. I can tell you when you get to your 60s you don't think in terms of long term projects, and Davis was looking at the possibility of being 70 by the time he got into a new stadium" (INSIDE SPORTS, 10/95 issue).