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Volume 24 No. 116

Franchises

     Palm Beach millionaire George Lindemann said Monday he made
an undisclosed offer to the three-man trust in charge of selling
the Buccaneers, and was turned down.  This was the first official
offer for the franchise.  Lindemann would not reveal the amount
of the proposal, but "suggested it might be similar to the $137
million offer he made earlier this year for the Dolphins."  The
Bucs trust was unavailable for comment and Lindemann said he is
considering whether to make another bid for the team.  It is
believed that at least two other local buyers will make offers
within a week, including a group from Outback Steakhouse and
Orlando pencil magnate Gino Pala.  The new activity in the sale
is in response to Orioles Owner Peter Angelos' expected bid of
$200M to buy the team and move them to Baltimore.  Groups wishing
to keep the team in the Tampa area are unlikely to match Angelos'
offer, as it remains "uncertain what the Bucs might be worth in
Tampa as opposed to Baltimore" (Stebbins, Kaufman, Henderson,
TAMPA TRIBUNE, 12/20).  For news on improvements to Tampa
Stadium.
     MARYLAND GOVERNOR APPROVES MOVE:  MD Gov.-elect Parris
Glendening said he would urge Redskins Owner Jack Kent Cooke to
approve of the relocation of any NFL franchise to Baltimore.
Glendening: "I would do whatever possible to bring an NFL team to
Baltimore."  He also said the state should help finance a new
football stadium near Baltimore's Camden Yards, should they get a
team (Leonard Shapiro, WASHINGTON POST, 12/20).

     The Grizzlies and Raptors have scheduled news conferences
for today and tomorrow at which each are expected to announce
that they have reached the NBA's mandate of 12,500 season
tickets.  The Grizzlies will hold a press conference this
afternoon to announce the news.  The Raptors may have more good
news, as today's TORONTO SUN reports the team is close to
finalizing a deal for their arena site.  The team has made a
revised proposal for the Canada Post building, and details could
be approved by both parties by Christmas (Frank Zicarelli,
TORONTO SUN, 12/20).

     Red Sox CEO John Harrington denied a weekend N.Y. TIMES
report that the Celtics are looking into a possible purchasing of
the Red Sox.  Saying there "is no truth to the story," Harrington
said, "The shares of the Yawkey estate are not for sale.  When
they are, everyone will know about it at the same time."  The
newspaper reported that the Boston Celtics Limited Partnership,
with new-found assets and a desire to diversify, may be
interested in acquiring the Red Sox to gain a strong hold on the
Boston sports market.  Celtics Chair Paul Gaston would not
comment on the TIMES story (May & McDonough, BOSTON GLOBE,
12/19).

     A L.A.-based consortium headed by former Washington State
football player Philip Johnson and former San Diego State
assistant coach Ron Sims has put down a $100,000 deposit to buy
3.125M newly-issued common shares of the CFL Las Vegas Posse at
$.80 apiece.  That would give the group 54% ownership of the
team.  CFL Commissioner Larry Smith:  "They have filed a letter
of intent.  We hope to have it done by mid-January."  The group
wants the team play at the L.A. Coliseum (Rick Matsumoto, TORONTO
STAR, 12/20).

     A "marathon negotiating session" in St. Louis over the
weekend between the Rams and FANS, Inc., the civic group trying
to bring the team to St. Louis, resolved many issues.  FANS
spokesperson Tom Eagleton: "They were excellent meetings
involving a large number of people, representing different
elements of our proposal."  Eagleton called the lengthy sessions
the most "productive yet in the ongoing effort to lure the Rams
to St. Louis," adding that "a lot was accomplished."  Eagleton
would not comment on specifics in the negotiations, or when a
decision by the Rams was expected (Jim Thomas, ST. LOUIS POST-
DISPATCH, 12/20).  In a piece called "Identity Crisis," Dan
Bickley of the CHICAGO SUN-TIMES examines St. Louis' effort to
get the Rams after losing the Cardinals in '88.  The community is
"doing everything it can to regain a huge source of self-esteem"
(CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 12/18).