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SBD/Issue 238/Leagues & Governing BodiesPrint All
NHLPA's Exec Committee Could
Vote To Remove Paul Kelly
ANSWER IS BLOWIN' IN THE WIND: The GLOBE & MAIL's Tim Wharnsby reports NHLPA Exec Committee members "recently participated in what could be described as a leadership review," part of which was to "interview each member of the NHLPA staff." It is believed that "dissent surrounding Kelly's leadership began to pick up steam" at NHLPA meetings in Las Vegas in June, and "alarm bells certainly went off in February" after Ombudsman Eric Lindros suddenly resigned. Wharnsby notes "opinions are wide ranging as to whether members have been pleased with the job" Kelly has done in his 22-month stint, and some players "pledged to grill Kelly on a variety of internal matters," including Lindros' resignation (GLOBE & MAIL, 8/28). In Calgary, Steve MacFarlane notes NHL players Thursday "weren't willing or informed enough to comment" on the matter. Kings LW Ryan Smyth: "I don't know much about it, so I'm not really going to comment on it." Sharks D Dan Boyle said, "I heard a couple guys talking. I'm honestly not that informed about it and I don't know enough" (CALGARY SUN, 8/28).
Vikings Still Have Plenty Of Tickets To
Sell, Despite Acquisition Of Brett Favre
BUCKING A TREND: In St. Petersburg, Justin George reports the Buccaneers are "facing slow ticket sales for the first time since Raymond James Stadium opened in 1998." The team has "sold out regularly" in recent years, but tickets remain for the team's regular-season home opener on September 13 against the Cowboys. The Buccaneers in response have "taken the unprecedented steps of offering season ticket buyers monthly payment plans, seats that don't require deposits or long-term contracts and $32.50 upper level tickets for children." The team's Web site also is "advertising half-season packages that range" between $260-325 per seat (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 8/28).
Goodell's Proposed 18-Game
Season Greeted With Skepticism
PRESEASON ALSO HAS INJURY RISKS: SI.com's John Lopez noted after "just two full weeks of preseason games, 22 NFL teams already have at least one front-line player listed as out, doubtful or questionable for the start of the regular season." As a result, a "long-needed change to the preseason, shortening the schedule by at least one game and lengthening the regular season, clearly will be on the way the next time NFL owners address the issue." Lopez: "It's about time. Where once the preseason was vitally important for teams and a nice money-maker for owners, today it is unnecessary and a hazard." The value to owners of adding regular season games is "obvious, with more regular-season games leading to increased revenue via TV and radio contracts, and gate revenue and season-ticket income," but the "key component to making it happen would be making the schedule change equally as attractive and valuable" to the NFLPA. Lopez wrote adding one game to the regular season "conceivably gets both sides what they want -- money." The owners "get theirs via more streams of cash flowing in," and players "could get theirs by negotiating that with a longer season, rosters would expand by at least one or two players per team and rookie and veteran minimum-salary levels would increase as well" (SI.com, 8/27).
UFC Execs Have Met With Vancouver Officials,
Expect To Have Sport Sanctioned Soon
White Has Hinted Of Merger
Between UFC And WEC
GETTING OFF THE MAT: Maryland State Athletic Commission (MSAC) Exec Dir Patrick Pannella said that Maryland's "first sanctioned mixed martial arts card" is scheduled for October 24 at 1st Mariner Arena. Canton, Maryland, gym owner John Rallo, who "spearheaded the sanctioning effort," will "promote the first event." Rallo said that the promotion "would break even with a crowd of 3,000 and that he'd be happy with 5,000." Rallo indicated that he also is "negotiating with Comcast SportsNet to get the event broadcast on cable television," and "if the show does well, Rallo hopes to run three events a year at 1st Mariner." The MSAC will receive a 10% cut of gross revenues from the event, and Rallo said that the tax "could be an impediment to attracting UFC, which recently ran a sold-out show in Philadelphia" (Walker & Van Valkenburg, Baltimore SUN, 8/28).
Platini Has Become Increasingly Concerned
By Massive Spending On Transfer Fees, Wages
TAKING A STAND: In London, Patrick Barclay notes Platini named EPL club Chelsea Owner Roman Abramovich "among the leading instigators of his campaign for 'financial fair play' in European football." Platini identified Abramovich, Italy Prime Minister and Serie A club AC Milan Owner Silvio Berlusconi and Serie A club Inter Milan Owner Massimo Moratti as "examples of club proprietors who wanted UEFA to end the inflation in transfer fees and salaries held responsible for increasing debts" (LONDON TIMES, 8/28). Platini: "It's mainly the owners that asked us to do something: Roman Abramovich, Silvio Berlusconi, Massimo Moratti. They do not want to fork out any more. Manchester City can spend [US$491.0M] if they want to but if they are not breaking even in three years then they cannot play in European competition" (Manchester GUARDIAN, 8/28).