SBD/10/Franchises

ELWAY LOVES L.A.! HE TALKS TO BROAD; NFL TALKS TO EISNER

          John Elway will meet with Eli Broad on Thursday in L.A.
     to "discuss joining Broad's venture" to bring an NFL
     expansion team to L.A., according to T.J. Simers of the L.A.
     TIMES.  While in town, Elway has "no plans to meet" with
     Michael Ovitz, but the NFL "has let it be known that it
     would like Elway to listen to Ovitz's overture before
     reaching any conclusion."  NFL execs feel that Elway could
     be "an asset in the process."  One official: "Elway sounds
     very passionate about the prospects of becoming involved in
     this.  And that's something the Los Angeles process needs." 
     Broncos Owner Pat Bowlen has extended an offer to Elway to
     own a small piece of his team, but he "advised Broad and
     Ovitz that he will most likely be unable to satisfy Elway's
     desire to also work in a significant management position
     with the team, freeing him to pursue" the L.A. opportunity. 
     Elway's agent Marvin Demoff: "It's clear John's interests
     are to be involved in the day-to-day operation of a football
     team, whether it's in Denver, Los Angeles or someplace else
     in the future."  Meanwhile, NFL execs met with Disney Chair
     Michael Eisner this past week "and left encouraged with
     future discussions expected."  Broad also met with Steven
     Spielberg in an effort to broaden his ownership group.  But
     one NFL exec noted the slow pace of progress: "We're just
     not seeing all that much happening so far.  We're moving
     closer and closer to Sept. 15, and we're nowhere near to
     getting something resolved" (L.A. TIMES, 5/9).  The
     SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL's Liz Mullen writes that "speculation
     is rampant" that former Dodgers Owner Peter O'Malley "could
     either form his own group or join an existing group" bidding
     for an NFL expansion team in L.A. (SBJ, 5/10 issue).
          NEW BUSINESS PARTNER? Michael Ovitz was profiled in the
     N.Y. TIMES MAGAZINE.  Ovitz, on his controversial image in
     Hollywood: "I've left bodies in my path, believe me, because
     I'm aggressive and sometimes I'm insensitive.  But it's a
     whole new world out there" (N.Y. TIMES MAGAZINE, 5/9).  
          WHAT ABOUT US! An editorial in the HOUSTON CHRONICLE
     runs under the header, "NFL Is Running Out The Clock On
     Houston, McNair," and asks, "How many deadline extensions
     will the NFL be willing to grant Los Angeles while Houston's
     bid ripens on the vine?" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 5/8).

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