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SBD/July 29, 2011/Franchises
Published July 29, 2011
GETTING HIS KICKS: F1 Team Lotus Owner Tony Fernandes is "plotting a [US$163M] move to buy" EPL club Queens Park Rangers. F1 Management Chair Bernie Ecclestone holds a 62% share of the soccer team, and although investor Flavio Briatore has an option to buy the shares, it is "believed the pair have given Fernandes the go-ahead for the move." QPR's other shareholder, Lakshmi Mittal, "has failed to secure Ecclestone's shares after refusing to meet the asking price" (London DAILY MAIL, 7/29).
SUNNY SIDE UP: In Phoenix, Paul Coro reported Suns employees "were assured via e-mail in June that they would not face layoffs or pay cuts for the rest of 2011." That e-mail stipulation is "consistent with what most team employees elsewhere in the league have been told." Meanwhile, as the NBA lockout continues, the team's website "now stars the Suns Dancers and the Gorilla," and players' names "only are mentioned on a roster link." Large images of Suns players in the US Airways Center pavilion "also were taken down prior to the start of the lockout on July 1" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 7/28).
PAY TO PLAY: In DC, Dan Steinberg noted Monumental Sports & Entertainment is selling $250 passes that offer "discounts to 'select sporting events,' and 'special pre-sale ticket access to all Capitals, Wizards and Mystics regular-season and playoff games." Steinberg: "I’m sure I’m missing something, but paying $250 for the right to buy tickets has a very odd feel to me" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 7/28).