SBD/20/Franchises

SEATTLE BUSINESS LEADERS MEET IN SHOW OF SUPPORT FOR 'HAWKS

     Thirty of Seattle's top business leaders met yesterday to
"rally round the Seahawks" and convince the NFL that "locals
would support remodeling the Kingdome as part of a deal to bring
the football team home," according to Boren & Farnsworth of the
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER.  Former co-Owner John Nordstrom, who
called the meeting, said he did not ask anyone to commit to
anything, but "as we move through the next week to 10 days,
things are going to change."  NFL VP Communications Joe Browne
said the league is interested in seeing support for a $125M
remodeling of the Kingdome (SEATTLE P-I, 3/20).  USA TODAY's
Gordon Forbes writes the NFL's case to keep the Seahawks in
Seattle seems "hopeless."  The league's negotiating team
"concedes" if Seahawks Owner Ken Behring's claim of an unsafe
Kingdome stands in court, "the Seahawks are gone" (USA TODAY,
3/20).  ESPN's Chris Mortensen reports Behring is "clearly
daring" NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue to impose the maximum
$500,000 fine on him for continuing to practice in Southern CA.
Behring's attorney, Ron Olson, told NFL committees last week at
the owner's meetings that the team "intends to leave Seattle,"
even if the court holds them in contempt for breaking their
Kingdome lease ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 3/19).
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