SBD/Issue 89/Franchises

Franchise Notes

Tickets went on sale yesterday for the three Hornets games to be played in the New Orleans Arena in March, but the lines “did not approach anything like the previous three seasons when the Hornets put single-game tickets on sale.” Fans could also buy tickets at Ticketmaster outlets and through the team’s Web site (TIMES-PICAYUNE, 1/26). Meanwhile, Hornets coach Byron Scott said of playing home games in Oklahoma City again next season, "I think our guys are at home here. I think the fans have been unbelievable. ... I would prefer to stay here next year” (AP, 1/26).

ANGELS: In L.A., Bill Shaikin reports sports economist Andrew Zimbalist “will not be allowed to testify” for the city of Anaheim in its trial against the Angels. Zimbalist said that the city “had foregone $138.5[M] by signing a long-term lease with the team rather than demolishing [Angels Stadium], selling the land and reaping taxes from property development.” Orange County Superior Court Judge Peter Polos said that the analysis “does not offer ‘the proper measure of damages’ in a breach-of-contract case,” as the damages of the Angels breaking their lease with the city due to their name change “should reflect the value of the actual benefits lost by the city” (L.A. TIMES, 1/26).

SEAHAWKS: The Seahawks have decided not to hold a public viewing of the Super Bowl at Qwest Field “because it would hurt businesses who are depending on fans flocking to bars and restaurants.” Seahawks CEO Tod Leiweke: “We felt it would not be treating other businesses all over the area fairly. They pay taxes that were used to help build the stadium; they did their fair share. They deserve this day, too” (SEATTLE TIMES, 1/26). Notably, NFL rules prohibit their teams and other establishments from holding Super Bowl viewing parties. Business such as sports bars that show sporting events as part of their normal operations are not prohibited, however, from showing the game (THE DAILY).

JAZZ: The Jazz announced that all fans at Saturday’s game against the Cavaliers would win a free ticket to another game after referee Ron Olesiak hit a target in the stands with a football. However, the team intended for the free ticket to be available only if a second ticket was purchased. After fans “pointed out that what was delivered was different than what was promised,” the team honored the guarantee with upper-bowl tickets to certain future games (SALT LAKE TRIBUNE, 1/26).

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