SBD/February 14, 2013/Franchises

Franchise Notes

In Orlando, Josh Robbins reports the NBA yesterday suspended F Hedo Turkoglu for 20 games for "testing positive for methenolone, an anabolic steroid.” The move is “yet another blow to the Orlando Magic during a largely dismal season for the franchise.” He became the “second Magic player since 2009 to be suspended by the NBA for violating the league’s anti-drug policy” (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 2/14). Also in Orlando, Mike Bianchi writes Turkoglu's positive test is “yet another blow to a floundering franchise doing everything in its power to move past the Dwightmare on Church Street that haunted the franchise for two years.” The Magic and its leadership have been “trying diligently to put a positive spin on a season that is circling the drain.” Bianchi: “And now, suddenly, the Magic are the Lance Armstrong of the NBA” (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 2/14).

THE PRICE IS RIGHT: In Detroit, Terry Foster notes some Tigers fans are “not happy with the recent increase in ticket prices at Comerica Park.” The $5 seats are “a thing of the past and that is sad to see,” but that price “doesn't make sense anymore for a team that has high-payroll players.” Tickets in Detroit are “middle-of-the-road, but the Tigers have a top-five payroll.” In addition, there is no team-owned RSN “to fuel the engine.” The Tigers are “no longer acting like a small-market team,” as the increased price for tickets “will be anywhere from $12 to $23.” Foster: “Those tickets are still lower than anything I found online in Chicago or Boston. I did see $8 seats in Kansas City, but do you want to change places with the Royals?” (DETROIT NEWS, 2/14).

NO NEED TO FEAR: In Cleveland, Bud Shaw writes the fact Browns Owner Jimmy Haslam III is returning to his role as Pilot Flying J CEO “now that he's hired people to run things … doesn't mean he's the next Randy Lerner either.” There are “a bunch of NFL owners who fall somewhere near the middle” of Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones and former Browns Owner Lerner on a scale “devised to measure commitment and involvement in their teams.” Haslam is “just another one of them.” Shaw: “Haslam wasn't all-in the way you might have thought, and now he isn't all-out as you might fear. He wasn't dictating decisions in the past five months” (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 2/14).
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