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ABL GRANTS LEAGUE VP RICKARD AN OPTION TO PURCHASE POWER
Published December 9, 1997
The ABL "has given the option to buy the operating rights" to the Portland Power to the league's Senior VP, Rodger Rickard, according to Jason Quick of the Portland OREGONIAN. Rickard has five years to exercise the option. Operating rights cost in the $3.5M range, but ABL CEO Gary Cavalli said that Rickard "would be offered a discount price because he invested several millions" into the league in September. Rickard, a former CA real estate entrepreneur, said that he might purchase the rights at the end of '98: "It all depends on how well the league is progressing along its path." Quick: "Rickard's actions will be interesting to watch. ... If he buys the operating rights to the Power, fans have to feel good about the league's future. But the longer he holds out, the more unsteady the league seems." If he exercises his option, Rickard would control the team's marketing, local broadcasts, ticket sales, sponsorships and staffing, while the ABL would still own the team and pay its players (Jason Quick, Portland OREGONIAN, 12/8).