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Volume 24 No. 156

Franchises

     With reports that Bucs Owner Malcolm Glazer's failed stock
sale may put his deal for the team "in danger," Orioles Owner and
Bucs suitor Peter Angelos said he has spoken with Bucs trust
member Steve Story about the deal.  Angelos "inquired" about
whether the Bucs sale was in jeopardy.  Angelos: "There are
rumblings and they may be unfounded.  But if not, we will renew
our efforts" (Baltimore SUN, 2/16).
     ADVICE FOR GLAZER: If Glazer commits $10M toward a new
stadium in Tampa as soon as his ownership is approved by the NFL,
"Tampa Bay would be his," according to Gary Shelton of the ST.
PETERSBURG TIMES.  Shelton writes, "We are not just talking money
here.  We are talking credibility."  Since the building of a new
stadium is viewed as a necessity, Glazer could "wait for it to
happen.  Or take a firm step and lead the way" (Gary Shetlon, ST.
PETERSBURG TIMES, 2/16).

     The Lions may leave the Silverdome and move to Detroitunless the city of Pontiac renegotiates its lease, according toreports this morning in the DETROIT NEWS.  Lions VP William ClayFord, Jr., said he has met with Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer aboutthe team returning to the city it left in 1975.  Ford: "He wouldlove to have us back."  The Lions receive no income from parking,stadium concessions, or luxury suites, pay more than $2M onticket surcharge, office spaces and game-day expenses.  Ford saidthe Lions are the only team in the NFL that doesn't receive suchstadium generated revenue.  Ford: "When we signed our lease, itwas a fine lease.  The problem is, the competitive landscape haschanged dramatically in the NFL" (DETROIT NEWS, 2/16).

     The CHL San Antonio Iguanas will compete "tooth and nail"
against an IHL team if one moves to the city.  The SAN ANTONIO
EXPRESS-NEWS reported Wednesday that Spurs officials are
"exploring the idea" of luring an IHL team for the Alamodome.  If
the IHL grants a team to the Alamodome, CHL officials "suggested
they will consider lowering ticket prices" for the coming season,
but will not move out of the city.  CHL Commissioner Monte Miron
admitted the IHL is "a step above us," but "it's still minor
league."  Miron on the viability of an IHL franchise in San
Antonio:  "I know if it was my money, I wouldn't invest it in the
IHL (in San Antonio).  I don't think they will make it" in San
Antonio.  The Iguanas are averaging 5,258 fans in the San Antonio
Coliseum (Jerry Briggs, SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS NEWS, 2/16).

     NFL owners will hear testimony in Dallas today from the Rams
and Commissioner Paul Tagliabue's "fact-finding team" regarding
the team's impending move to St. Louis.  Owners will not
officially vote on the move until their March meeting in Phoenix.
Two items that owners are "expected to address" are the
"preservation of the television contract" and the compensation
the Rams would pay the league for moving the team to St. Louis.
Regarding TV, NFL owners "are expected to seek assurances today
that the Raiders will continue to give the league" a presence in
L.A -- the nation's second largest TV market (Michele Himmelberg,
ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 2/16).  During ESPN's coverage of the
expansion draft, Chris Berman reported that the Rams' move is not
a done deal (Rudy Martzke, USA TODAY, 2/16).