SBD/15/Franchises

LIGHTNING CREDITOR MAY RENEGOTIATE TV DEAL FOR DAVIDSON

          Media reports out of Tampa varied as to the status of
     Pistons Owner William Davidson's bid for the Lightning.  In
     St. Pete, Tim Buckley reports that the Lightning has
     received "a formal, written offer" from Davidson, but the
     Lightning's ownership "has yet to decide if it will accept
     or reject the bid" (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 5/15).  In Tampa,
     Ira Kaufman reports that Davidson "did not tender a
     conditional offer" yesterday.  But he adds that Sunshine
     Network GM Jim Liberatore has recently discussed the team's
     contract with a Davidson rep, "assuring the executive of the
     viability of Tampa Bay's NHL market."  The Lightning owes
     the net an estimated $5M for its TV deal, but Liberatore
     said that Sunshine is open to renegotiating terms of the
     deal "in exchange for adding years" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 5/15). 

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