SBD/10/Leagues Governing Bodies

ALL EYES ON OPRYLAND FOR NEXT ABL PLAYGROUND

          ABL player contracts, along with league and coaching
     hires, have "delayed" the league's expansion announcement,
     according to Bruce Berlet of the HARTFORD COURANT.  But "it
     appears Nashville will be the ABL's 10th franchise," as ABL
     CEO Gary Cavalli visited the city twice "the past two
     weeks," and it "apparently" beat Tampa and St. Louis in the
     "expansion sweepstakes."  Cavalli: "We've done a lot of
     careful analysis and it looks like we're going to
     Nashville."  In other news, Cavalli said the league's third
     season "could begin" two weeks later (around November 1) to
     avoid the World Series and have "less time opposite" the
     NFL.  Talks are also "continuing" with national TV networks
     about coverage next season (HARTFORD COURANT, 3/10).
          LEAGUE FINALS: The Long Beach StingRays and Columbus
     Quest are currently playing in the league finals, and Game
     One of the best-of-five drew a sellout crowd of 4,005 in
     Long Beach (DISPATCH, 3/9).  After watching the game,
     columnist Bill Dwyre called the ABL "the best ticket bargain
     in pro sports at the moment" with pro athletes "actually
     playing hard all the time" (L.A. TIMES, 3/9).  In S.F.,
     Glenn Dickey wrote the ABL "is doing fine" in year two and
     said of the two leagues, the ABL is "the better alternative. 
     It's run in the best interests of women's basketball, while
     the WNBA has a condescending, paternalistic approach.  And
     the ABL has a better game" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 3/6).

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