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Acting MLB Commissioner Bud Selig said a vote on revenue- sharing is possible when MLB owners meet this week in Phoenix, and added that -- if approved -- a plan could take effect this season (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 3/19). OLD-TIMERS SUE: A group of retired players sued MLB, "saying they are being cheated out of royalties from sales of baseball cards, films and other memorabilia." Two suits filed in Oakland by 82-year-old Pete Coscarat represent more than 800 retirees and heirs (USA TODAY, 3/19).
The NBA's lawsuit against the NBPA and six top agents "is a direct response to the unsettled state of the union," according to David Moore of the DALLAS MORNING NEWS. When Simon Gourdine was ousted as Exec Dir in January, Jeffrey Kessler, one of the leaders of last summer's decertification fight, was retained to represent the union in final CBA negotiations. NBA Deputy Commissioner Russ Granik says, when Kessler was brought on, "98 to 99 percent of the contract's wording had been completed." But, according to Granik, in their first meeting with Kessler he said "they wanted to start over." Granik: "Just because we changed negotiators, we felt that gave them no right to back out on portions of the deal." The players have decided to hire a head-hunting firm to find a new Exec Dir, but they "haven't been able to agree on what firm should be hired." Until the players make a hire, "it's difficult to imagine the league and union reaching an accord" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/19).
The NFL announced yesterday Super Bowl XXXIII, originally scheduled to be held in San Francisco, will be held elsewhere, according to the S.F. CHRONICLE. The city will still host a Super Bowl, but when that will happen "is still up in the air." After a weekend meeting with Mayor Willie Brown, 49ers President Carmen Policy and S.F. Convention and Visitors Bureau President John Marks, NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue agreed to let San Francisco host the Super Bowl a year after a new stadium is built. The NFL says, ideally, the game would be played in 2001 or 2002. Brown and the 49ers are negotiating how to finance a new stadium. Some sources say an announcement could come this week, others say longer (S.F. CHRONICLE, 3/19). The NFL is expected to address the 2001 and 2002 Super Bowls at its annual meeting in October. Finalists for '99 and 2000: Atlanta, Arizona, L.A., South FL and Tampa (Clark Judge, SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 3/19). Vikings President Roger Headrick says there is a good chance the Metrodome could be the site of the 2002 Super Bowl if the Twins get a new baseball-only stadium (Minneapolis STAR-TRIBUNE, 3/17).