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ABC Exec VP/Production BRIAN MCANDREWS "is moving to the East Coast to become the executive in charge of ABC Sports," according to Stephen Battaglio of the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. McAndrews will become Exec VP/GM of ABC Sports and report to ESPN CEO/ABC Sports President STEVE BORNSTEIN starting on March 17. Battaglio: "The appointment comes at a time when the future of ABC Sports as a separate entity has been in question. ABC recently moved its top ABC Sports programming executive DAVID DOWNS to another position within the television network, and the position is not going to be filled." ABC President ROBERT IGER is also reportedly "looking at ways to merge the operations" of the ABC Sports division with ESPN. Sports Dir of Media Relations MARK MANDEL said McAndrews will "oversee the day-to-day operation" of the sports division and that his move has "nothing to do with accelerating any kind of action" between ABC Sports and ESPN (HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, 3/9).
ACC Properties named LISA CONNELLY Dir of Marketing (GOULD MEDIA, 3/6)....FL-based golf management and marketing company Executive Sports Int'l has formed ESI Canada with a new office in Toronto. The operation will be led by Managing Dir PERI LUEL, while STEVE MARSHMAN and MARC JULIEN will be Account Managers. CHRIS BELL was named Account Exec and SUE LAVIOLETTE will be the Office Manager. A Dir of Corporate Sales & Marketing will be named later (Executive Sports).
DON KING, interviewed by Showtime's JIM GRAY, on the lawsuit filed against him by MIKE TYSON. King, asked whether he betrayed Tyson's trust: "Absolutely not. I might say this is a totally meritless lawsuit. ... I'm terribly hurt and disappointed that he would allow himself to be used in such a manner to make an assault on me" (Showtime)....Yankees SS DEREK JETER continues to be linked romantically to MARIAH CAREY. When asked about it, Jeter: "Baseball is baseball, man, and I'm here to answer baseball questions" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 3/7)....In Portland, Paul Buker reported that Raptors F DOUG CHRISTIE, who "demanded a trade, then backed off," has "fired" his agent, BRAD MARSHALL (Portland OREGONIAN, 3/8).