SBD/April 13, 2012/Franchises

Sale Of Dodgers To Johnson-Guggenheim Group Set To Be Approved In Court Friday

The record $2.15B sale of the Dodgers to Guggenheim Baseball Management is set to be approved at a bankruptcy court hearing scheduled to begin Friday morning in Wilmington, Del. The Dodgers late Thursday responded to some of the limited, outstanding concerns to the pending sale and reorganization, saying they will have Guggenheim assert on record that Time Warner Cable is not involved in the sale or is "otherwise indirectly funding it." Fox Sports Net had been concerned one of its key rivals may have been involved in the sale as a means to secure the club's TV rights beginning in '14, and has said that if Time Warner does obtain the rights, the viability of Prime Ticket will be severely threatened. The club will additionally assert under oath there is no formal or informal agreement with Time Warner for the future cable rights. The Dodgers also said that Guggenheim, and not the club, should be responsible for roughly $8M in legal fees stemming from the case MLB wants to recover, if the court deems that money is in fact owed (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal). In L.A., Bill Shaikin notes MLB wants former Dodgers Owner Frank McCourt to "pay, since almost all of that money covers the league's legal fees for the bankruptcy case." Under the MLB constitution, teams are "forbidden from suing the league and, if they do sue, they must cover the league's legal bills." McCourt's attorneys said that any bills "should be assumed by the new owners" (L.A. TIMES, 4/13).
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Los Angeles Dodgers, Franchises

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