SBD/13/Franchises

FRANCHISE NOTES

     NBA Deputy Commissioner Russ Granik said the league "isn't
overly concerned" if the Raptors play an extra season, or part of
one, in the SkyDome.   He added there are no penalties in the
expansion deal if the team does not move into its new arena by
the '98 season (TORONTO SUN, 2/10).... The TORONTO SUN's Mike
Zeisberger notes Blue Jays spring training ticket sales are down.
The top selling game is March 21 vs. Cleveland with 2,300 sold.
Capacity in Dunedin is 6,200.  Ken Carson, Jays Dir of FL
Operations, said all MLB teams are reporting slower spring sales
(TORONTO SUN, 2/13)....The Braves sold 30,000 individual regular-
season tickets on Saturday of over 1 million available (ATLANTA
CONSTITUTION, 2/11)....The Devil Rays' will unveil a 700-square
foot billboard in downtown St. Pete that will feature a giant
countdown clock until the first pitch of the team's first regular
season game.  The clock is based on Opening Day, April 6, 1998 at
2:35pm (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 2/10).  Devil Rays' Owner Vince Naimoli
said the team has surpassed 16,000 season-ticket sales (ST.
PETERSBURG TIMES, 2/11).
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