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Volume 24 No. 160
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     Following reports that the NHL will award expansion
franchises to Denver and Atlanta to begin play in the '96-97
season, Ted Turner has told the ATLANTA CONSTITUTION that "he
doesn't want a team before the 1997-98 season and hopes the
league won't announce anything this summer."  Turner says he
wants a new arena in place before a new team comes to Atlanta,
and does not want to market a new team during the '96 Games.
League sources told the TAMPA TRIBUNE that NHL Commissioner Gary
Bettman "could make concessions to convince Turner to join the
league in 1996-97."  In Tampa, Tom Jones writes that "with new-
found popularity, the NHL wants to capitalize on the momentum and
expand as quickly as possible.  Announcing two expansion teams --
 50 new jobs for players -- this summer would also help the
bargaining agreement.  And the board of governors will welcome
expansion money."  The TRIBUNE lists other scenarios for
expansion: If Quebec moves to Denver, the NHL would expand to
Atlanta and another city -- Portland, Phoenix or Seattle -- for
'97-98; or, the NHL could award expansion franchises to Denver
and another city for '96-97 and then expand to Atlanta "one or
two years after that" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 5/23).