SBD/1/Franchises

PISTONS OWNER DAVIDSON HAS REPORTED INTEREST IN LIGHTNING

          Pistons Owner William Davidson "is in preliminary
     talks" with attorneys representing ownership of the
     Lightning about purchasing the team, according to Kupelian &
     O'Hara of the DETROIT NEWS.  Pistons President Tom Wilson:
     "We are looking at it. ... We saw this as it might be an
     opportunity to go into a one-winter-sport town.  It's kind
     of an underperforming team right now.  You might be able to
     pick it up at a decent price."  Wilson added that "there are
     two or three other parties that are serious.  I wouldn't say
     it's a strong possibility it's going to happen."  Pistons
     management has reviewed the Lightning's books, "indicating
     talks are serious."  Wilson said that the price range for
     the Lightning, based on recent sales of other teams and the
     cost of expansion franchises, is $90-130M.  He added that
     Davidson "has no intention" of moving the Lightning to The
     Palace outside of Detroit (DETROIT NEWS, 5/1).

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