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Volume 24 No. 160

Leagues Governing Bodies

     The "stalled" baseball negotiations are "expected to move
forward today for the first time" since the players went on
strike on August 12.  But, according to Peter Schmuck in this
morning's Baltimore SUN, "it remains unclear whether a new
proposal devised by owners will be attractive enough to the union
to end the stalemate."  Management's salary cap proposal is now
"off the table," but it will be replaced with a taxation plan
that is intended to have a similar effect on team payrolls
(Baltimore SUN, 11/17).  "There is at least a sliver of hope that
the negotiating between representatives of owners and striking
players over the next few days could lead to a settlement" (Mark
Maske, WASHINGTON POST, 11/17).  The players "remain leery" that
the owners' tax plan will be "nothing more than a salary cap with
a different name" (Joel Sherman, N.Y. POST, 11/17).  The owners'
6-member bargaining committee -- Red Sox CEO John Harrington,
Rockies Chair Jerry McMorris, Braves President Stan Kasten,
Phillies Exec VP David Montgomery, Brewers VP Wendy Selig-Preib,
former Cardinals President Stuart Meyer, and management
negotiator Richard Ravitch -- met in DC yesterday, "applying the
finishing touches to the owners' new proposal."  They were to
meet with Mediator Bill Usery last night (Mark Maske, WASHINGTON
POST, 11/17).
     HALF-FULL, HALF-EMPTY OR LEAKING?  Braves pitcher Tom
Glavine: "We're so far apart it's hard to believe something will
change so quickly, but a lot depends on the tone set early"
(ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 11/17).  Peter Schmuck: "If the owners
were willing to make a significant compromise, why would they
wait until after they lost two months of the regular season,
their first 3-tiered playoffs and hundreds of millions of dollars
in ticket and television revenue."  But Schmuck also notes that
the owners "have a growing sense of urgency.  They would like a
new economic system in place before" the December deadlines on
re-signing players or signing free agents (Baltimore SUN, 11/17).
     NEWS & NOTES:  According to Joel Sherman in the N.Y. POST,
Usery is being paid $120,000 a month to mediate the situation
(N.Y. POST, 11/17).  In L.A., Ross Newman notes that Usery "has
clearly had a persuasive impact, urging both sides to rethink
their positions" (L.A. TIMES, 11/17). ....Murray Chass examines
the GMs' Winter Meetings in Phoenix, under the headline: "With
Hands Tied by Talks, Traders Can't Shuffle Their Decks" (N.Y.
TIMES, 11/17).

     NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Exec Dir Bob
Goodenow meet again today, but based on the media breakfast held
yesterday by the league's 26 GMs, "there is little hope" the
talks will produce any movement.  The 26 GMs "collectively
accused Goodenow ... of negotiating in bad faith.  Or in the
words of a couple of general managers, of refusing to negotiate
at all" (David Shoalts, Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 11/17).  "What was
supposed to be a congenial meeting turned hostile when the
question of financial reporting procedures was raised" (CANADIAN
PRESS/Vancouver PROVINCE, 11/17).  Oilers President & GM Glen
Sather:  "I had our player rep to my house and I showed him the
information on our team and he said, 'Wow, is that real?'  I
said, 'Do you think I want to go to jail?  We've already got one
guy in this league going to jail and I don't want to be the
second one.'"  Sather was referring to former L.A. Kings owner
Bruce McNall (Mult., 11/17).  In New York, Joe LaPointe, who
calls the session an "extraordinary group rant," takes issue with
the GMs' claims that their figures are accurate as long as they
refuse to make full disclosure.  NHLPA attorney John McCambridge:
"They have given us compiled revenues, but no profit and losses
statements, no expenses and no idea of which teams are making or
losing money except for the Rangers" (N.Y. TIMES, 11/17).
     PANTS ON FIRE:  Sather:  "I don't understand how Goodenow
can say what we're saying isn't true.  He's calling us all
liars."  Goodenow:  "Oh, please.  I haven't called anyone a liar.
What I have said is that people structure their businesses
differently and we don't want to analyze the structure of 26
businesses. ... I have never raised this as a question of
honesty" (Larry Brooks, N.Y. POST, 11/17).   WHAT TO EXPECT
TODAY:  Following several reports yesterday, many observers
expect NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to offer a plan that cuts
the league's proposed payroll tax from 122% to 60%.  In Toronto,
Dave Fuller writes, "The longest work stoppage in NHL history
could be over today if the players accept the league's new
proposal on a luxury payroll tax."  One league source:
"Everything else would fall into place if they agree to the tax"
(TORONTO SUN, 11/17).  Maple Leafs GM Cliff Fletcher will join
the Devils' Lou Lamoriello, the Bruins' Harry Sinden and the
Flyers' Bobby Clarke on the league's side of the table today.
The NHLPA will not expand its negotiating team (Larry Brooks,
N.Y. POST, 11/17).  Sinden confirmed that today's talks will be
held in Boston (BOSTON GLOBE, 11/17).   ARBITRATION:  In Tampa,
Roy Cummings reports the league may be prepared to offer a new
system in which players become temporary free agents (30 days)
after winning an arbitration case, with the team retaining all
rights to match any offer.  If the player doesn't get a better
price, he would have to return at the team's original arbitration
offer (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 11/17).  Sinden on the union's offer to
allow two-way contracts and eliminate salary arbitration for
rookies:  "I described it as giving a canoe to an Arab.  In the
last 20 years, we've probably had 4,000 draftees.  Not one, to my
knowledge, even went to arbitration.  And I'd say 95 percent of
all the draft choices are on two-way contracts anyway" (Jeff
Jacobs, HARTFORD COURANT, 11/17).
     ROOKIE RESTRICTIONS:  In Toronto, Al Strachan writes that
some entry-level restrictions is the "spark that could ignite the
process."  He proposes either extending a team's rights to an
unsigned rookie from two years to three or bonding a draftee to a
team until he's 22.  The players might accept the first option in
return for more freedom for veteran players (TORONTO SUN, 11/17).
     D-DAY?  Bettman: "I'm frustrated, I'm sure the players are
frustrated.  I'm not going to throw up my hands and rush off
until I have no choice and we're not at that stage yet.
Although, I think we'd all agree we're getting periously close to
that point" ("Sports Tonight," CNN, 11/16).

     MLS Chair Alan Rothenberg made several announcements
yesterday concerning the development of the league -- including
new franchise cities and a list of investors.  The charter
investors -- VA billionaire John Kluge and Metromedia Exec VP
Stuart Subotnick, the Hunt family (owners of the Chiefs), API
Soccer, headed by Kevin Payne, and LA Soccer Partners, headed by
L.A. investor Marc Rapaport -- will form the financial and
operational base for the new league that will commence play in
April 1996.  MLS will have a minimum of 10, with possibly as many
as 12 teams.  Additionally, Patriots owner Robert Kraft said: "I
fully support MLS and look forward to their playing in Foxboro
Stadium.  In 1995, I will meet with MLS officials and examine the
opportunity to become one of the investors and team operators"
(MLS).  Two cities were added to the franchise list, Tampa and
Chicago.  Other cities already awarded franchises:  Washington,
L.A., San Jose, Columbus, Foxboro/Boston, Northern NJ and Long
Island.  The Long Island franchise will not begin until '97
(WASHINGTON POST, 11/17).  Other candidates for franchises
include:  Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Indianapolis, Kansas City,
Miami, San Diego, Tulsa and at least one Canadian city (Mult.,
11/17).   WHAT NEXT?  Rothenberg says that in the next 18 months,
MLS will be "busy promoting itself, taking cues from the
expansion teams in other American sports" (David Waldstein, N.Y.
POST, 11/17).  In Hartford, Jerry Trecker implies that MLS
merchandise may precede the actual playing of games (HARTFORD
COURANT, 11/17).  Exhibitions between national teams and pro
clubs will be staged in MLS-designated stadiums in '95 (Frank
Dell'Apa, BOSTON GLOBE, 11/17).  One big change from MLS's
original strategy is that the investors will in fact run their
own teams.  Originally, MLS planned on running the league on a
single-entity basis, but "when investors became reluctant to
accept such a venture," Rothenberg shifted (Alex Yannis, N.Y.
TIMES, 11/17).
     OTHER SOCCER NEWS:  The MLS is being challenged by the
American Professional Soccer League, which is moving to occupy
major markets and sign up top U.S. players before MLS gets
started.  A press conference today in Atlanta will introduce the
franchise's new name, logo and ad campaign (Doug Cress, ATLANTA
CONSTITUTION, 11/17).

     Former Patriots owner Victor Kiam filed a $450M lawsuit
yesterday against the NFL, "saying it forced him to sell his team
by denying his right to move it to Florida."  The suit, filed in
U.S. District Court in Manhattan, states the NFL and its teams
violated antitrust laws when they kept the Pats "hostage" in
Foxboro, MA.  Named as defendants in the were the NFL and all of
its teams except the Rams, Raiders, 49ers, Saints and Jaguars.
Kiam: "But for the antitrust violation, I would today own a
highly profitable professional football team with a current value
of more than $200 million, even with the current NFL restrictions
on ownership.  With the blocking of the moves, I was forced to
sell a financial ailing Foxboro situation for about $103 million,
an overall loss."  Kiam sold the team in '92 to James Orthwein,
who in turn sold the team to Robert Kraft this year.  The suit
was filed for Kiam by attorney Joseph Alioto, the former San
Francisco mayor who won a $51M award for another former Patriots
owner, Billy Sullivan, by convincing a jury that Sullivan would
not have had to sell the team to Kiam if the league had allowed
him to sell public stock.  That verdict was overturned in
September by a federal appeals court (Larry Neumeister, AP/BOSTON
HERALD, 11/17).  During his tenure as Pats owner, Kiam said he
had offers from groups in Memphis and Jacksonville for more than
$100M, but that his agreement with the NFL "prevented him from
doing so" (Will McDonough, BOSTON GLOBE, 11/17).  According to
the suit, the league rewarded the owners of the Jaguars a with
franchise "only after they agreed to stop negotiating with Kiam
about buying and moving the Patriots" (Colin Miner, N.Y. POST,
11/17).  The suit also alleges that Redskins owner Jack Kent
Cooke told several people, including MD's governor, that he and
the NFL would never permit a team in Baltimore to compete for
fans with the Redskins.  Baltimore is one of the cities listed as
interested in being home to the Pats (AP/HERALD, 11/17).

     WBC President Jose Sulaiman announced that the WBC will
institute a temporary boycott of all title fights in California
to protest the recent voter-approved Proposition 187, which bars
public aid to illegal immigrants in the state.  Sulaiman said
that the boycott win be in effect from November 22 through March
30, 1995.  In addition, Sulaiman said that any Mexican boxer who
fights in CA during that period will be barred from WBC matches
for two years: "The boycott is against the governor of
California, for promoting a racist and inhumane law" (L.A. TIMES,
11/16).