Group Created with Sketch.
Volume 24 No. 156

Franchises

     In L.A., Mark Heisler floats the idea that recently departed
Knicks coach Pat Riley could head to the Clippers, perhaps for
25% of owner Donald Sterling's franchise.  Heisler:  "Riley is a
star. Sterling loves stars.  If Riley needed 10% ownership to
become General Manager, that would be $7.5 million worth."
Heisler writes that Riley would give the team credibility and "a
smooth running NBA franchise in Los Angeles should be worth $150
million, which would make Sterling's 75% worth $112.5 mil or darn
slight more than his 100% is today" (L.A. TIMES, 6/18).
NEWSDAY's Mike Lupica, echoes that idea, with a twist:  "I think
at some point in the next year, you will see Disney buy the L.A.
Clippers from Donald Sterling and I think Pat Riley will go back
and they'll give him some sort of vested interest" ("Sports
Reporters," ESPN, 6/18)....The "latest" is that NFL Cardinals
Owner Bill Bidwell "would not mind being the NFC team in L.A"
(S.A. Paolantonio, PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 6/18)....In New York,
Gary Myers writes that additional luxury boxes and club seating
being discussed at Giants Stadium could "eventually mean an extra
$5 million in annual revenue for the Giants and Jets."  Plans
call for an extra 80 boxes and 700-800 club seats.  Construction
could be done by '97 (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 6/18).....Entrepreneur
Skip Korb makes his presentation this week to the Regional
Stadium Task Force in Cincinnati for a domed stadium for the
Bengals.  The $250M facility would be paid for by pension funds
of retired construction workers, instead of through taxes.
Bengals GM Mike Brown does not favor the plan (USA TODAY,
6/19)....The NHL team in Denver has received deposits for 7,000
season tickets (ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 6/17). ...The Class A
Portland Rockies opened their Northwest League season Thursday
before 19,658 (Portland OREGONIAN, 6/16).

     In L.A., Mark Heisler floats the idea that recently departed
Knicks coach Pat Riley could head to the Clippers, perhaps for
25% of owner Donald Sterling's franchise.  Heisler:  "Riley is a
star. Sterling loves stars.  If Riley needed 10% ownership to
become General Manager, that would be $7.5 million worth."
Heisler writes that Riley would give the team credibility and "a
smooth running NBA franchise in Los Angeles should be worth $150
million, which would make Sterling's 75% worth $112.5 mil or darn
slight more than his 100% is today" (L.A. TIMES, 6/18).
NEWSDAY's Mike Lupica, echoes that idea, with a twist:  "I think
at some point in the next year, you will see Disney buy the L.A.
Clippers from Donald Sterling and I think Pat Riley will go back
and they'll give him some sort of vested interest" ("Sports
Reporters," ESPN, 6/18)....The "latest" is that NFL Cardinals
Owner Bill Bidwell "would not mind being the NFC team in L.A"
(S.A. Paolantonio, PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 6/18)....In New York,
Gary Myers writes that additional luxury boxes and club seating
being discussed at Giants Stadium could "eventually mean an extra
$5 million in annual revenue for the Giants and Jets."  Plans
call for an extra 80 boxes and 700-800 club seats.  Construction
could be done by '97 (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 6/18).....Entrepreneur
Skip Korb makes his presentation this week to the Regional
Stadium Task Force in Cincinnati for a domed stadium for the
Bengals.  The $250M facility would be paid for by pension funds
of retired construction workers, instead of through taxes.
Bengals GM Mike Brown does not favor the plan (USA TODAY,
6/19)....The NHL team in Denver has received deposits for 7,000
season tickets (ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 6/17). ...The Class A
Portland Rockies opened their Northwest League season Thursday
before 19,658 (Portland OREGONIAN, 6/16).

     FL-based developer Norton Herrick, who led Orlando's failed
MLB expansion bid, confirmed Friday that he is interested in
buying the Blue Jays and is willing to enter "immediate
negotiations" with Intrebrew SA, the Belgian brewer that will
assume the team along with Labatt's other entertainment holdings.
Herrick, who previously had expressed interest only in the CFL
Argonauts, told the TORONTO SUN:  "We would be interested in
purchasing both.  The Argonauts, there's no real value in them to
be honest, but it doesn't matter."  Intrebew is believed to be
asking C$190M for both teams (Gary Picknell, TORONTO SUN, 6/17).

     FL-based developer Norton Herrick, who led Orlando's failed
MLB expansion bid, confirmed Friday that he is interested in
buying the Blue Jays and is willing to enter "immediate
negotiations" with Intrebrew SA, the Belgian brewer that will
assume the team along with Labatt's other entertainment holdings.
Herrick, who previously had expressed interest only in the CFL
Argonauts, told the TORONTO SUN:  "We would be interested in
purchasing both.  The Argonauts, there's no real value in them to
be honest, but it doesn't matter."  Intrebew is believed to be
asking C$190M for both teams (Gary Picknell, TORONTO SUN, 6/17).

     Questions remain in the aftermath of Mike Shanahan's
"ouster" as Blues Chair, according to Dave Luecking of the ST.
LOUIS POST-DISPATCH.  Blues President and CEO Jack Quinn was
promoted to take Shanahan's place as the Blues' rep on the NHL
Board of Governors, and Quinn said team owners have told him
"nothing with the team will change," including Mike Keenan
staying on as GM and coach.  Officially Kiel Center Partners say
they are "streamlining operations," but sources in the "Shanahan
camp" say that Emerson Electric Chair & CEO Chuck Knight and
Anheuser-Busch Chair & President August Busch III were behind
Shanahan's exit.  Luecking quotes one source who said that Knight
"resented Mike being presented as a good guy," and that Busch was
tired of hearing that St. Louis had become a "hockey town" while
the brewery "sat on its money" with the MLB Cardinals.  Luecking
writes that one source even suggested that Cardinals Manager Joe
Torre was fired last week "to get Shanahan off the front page"
(ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 6/17).

     Questions remain in the aftermath of Mike Shanahan's
"ouster" as Blues Chair, according to Dave Luecking of the ST.
LOUIS POST-DISPATCH.  Blues President and CEO Jack Quinn was
promoted to take Shanahan's place as the Blues' rep on the NHL
Board of Governors, and Quinn said team owners have told him
"nothing with the team will change," including Mike Keenan
staying on as GM and coach.  Officially Kiel Center Partners say
they are "streamlining operations," but sources in the "Shanahan
camp" say that Emerson Electric Chair & CEO Chuck Knight and
Anheuser-Busch Chair & President August Busch III were behind
Shanahan's exit.  Luecking quotes one source who said that Knight
"resented Mike being presented as a good guy," and that Busch was
tired of hearing that St. Louis had become a "hockey town" while
the brewery "sat on its money" with the MLB Cardinals.  Luecking
writes that one source even suggested that Cardinals Manager Joe
Torre was fired last week "to get Shanahan off the front page"
(ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 6/17).

     Ross Perot Jr. has "ceased efforts" to buy a share in the
Stars, team President Jim Lites said Friday.  Lites said that a
group led by Perot had been negotiating to purchase 50% of the
club from current owner Norman Green, but decided "that a sports
franchise is not the proper fit," writes Mike Heika in the FORT
WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM.  Lites:  "Their decision was strategic and
not economic.  They decided it was simply something that did not
fit into their plans at this time."  Lites said the team is
currently in negotiations with two other groups interested in
buying part of the team (FORT WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 6/17).

     Ross Perot Jr. has "ceased efforts" to buy a share in the
Stars, team President Jim Lites said Friday.  Lites said that a
group led by Perot had been negotiating to purchase 50% of the
club from current owner Norman Green, but decided "that a sports
franchise is not the proper fit," writes Mike Heika in the FORT
WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM.  Lites:  "Their decision was strategic and
not economic.  They decided it was simply something that did not
fit into their plans at this time."  Lites said the team is
currently in negotiations with two other groups interested in
buying part of the team (FORT WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 6/17).

     After putting down a C$10M initial payment for the Jets --
53 minutes before Friday's deadline -- the Spirit of Manitoba has
two months to structure its deal to conform with Revenue Canada
rulings and meet NHL approval.  The group must pay the C$22M
balance by August 15 to complete the deal (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS,
6/17).  After Spirit member   Charles Spiring expressed the
group's desire to have their "own man" in place running the team,
"it might have been smart for [Jets GM] John Paddock to resign
immediately," writes Kelly Taylor in Sunday's FREE PRESS.  Jets
President Barry Shenkarow and Paddock are expected to stay on
until the deal goes through, and most likely through free agent
dealings and the July 8 draft (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, 6/18).
     DEVIL-MAY-CARE ATTITUDE IN NASHVILLE:  This morning's
DETROIT NEWS reports that the Nashville TENNESSEAN has only one
reporter covering the Stanley Cup Finals. TENNESSEAN Sports
Editor Neil Scarborough: "People may want the team, but they
don't necessarily want the sport" (DETROIT NEWS, 6/19).  ESPN's
Nick Bakay satirically compared Nashville and New Jersey.  A
sampling:  "Definition of icing:  Nashville, the gooey stuff on
top of a moon pie; New Jersey -- a hit by the Gambino crime
family" ("Sunday SportsDay," 6/18).  Mike Lupica: "It sure sounds
like [Devils Owner] John McMullen is ready to go to Nashville.
It's an unbelievable sweetheart deal" ("Sports Reporters," ESPN,
6/18).  In today's N.Y. POST, Larry Brooks writes that it is time
for NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to tell McMullen "that the
league will not support a franchise relocation if it takes
breaking a lease to get the deed done" (N.Y. POST, 6/19).

     After putting down a C$10M initial payment for the Jets --
53 minutes before Friday's deadline -- the Spirit of Manitoba has
two months to structure its deal to conform with Revenue Canada
rulings and meet NHL approval.  The group must pay the C$22M
balance by August 15 to complete the deal (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS,
6/17).  After Spirit member   Charles Spiring expressed the
group's desire to have their "own man" in place running the team,
"it might have been smart for [Jets GM] John Paddock to resign
immediately," writes Kelly Taylor in Sunday's FREE PRESS.  Jets
President Barry Shenkarow and Paddock are expected to stay on
until the deal goes through, and most likely through free agent
dealings and the July 8 draft (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, 6/18).
     DEVIL-MAY-CARE ATTITUDE IN NASHVILLE:  This morning's
DETROIT NEWS reports that the Nashville TENNESSEAN has only one
reporter covering the Stanley Cup Finals. TENNESSEAN Sports
Editor Neil Scarborough: "People may want the team, but they
don't necessarily want the sport" (DETROIT NEWS, 6/19).  ESPN's
Nick Bakay satirically compared Nashville and New Jersey.  A
sampling:  "Definition of icing:  Nashville, the gooey stuff on
top of a moon pie; New Jersey -- a hit by the Gambino crime
family" ("Sunday SportsDay," 6/18).  Mike Lupica: "It sure sounds
like [Devils Owner] John McMullen is ready to go to Nashville.
It's an unbelievable sweetheart deal" ("Sports Reporters," ESPN,
6/18).  In today's N.Y. POST, Larry Brooks writes that it is time
for NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to tell McMullen "that the
league will not support a franchise relocation if it takes
breaking a lease to get the deed done" (N.Y. POST, 6/19).

     ESPN's Keith Olbermann reported Sunday night that the Kings'
financial situation "was so precarious during the season that the
NHL itself loaned several million dollars to the franchise to
keep it afloat."  Olbermann reported that sources "close to the
Kings' business operation," said that "deferred salary payments
to Wayne Gretzky have become such a hinderance to finding a new
owner that the league has discussed assuming those payments
itself or even dealing Gretzky off to a franchise willing to do
so -- possibly Toronto" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 6/18).
     LEGAL UNEASE:  One contention of the lawsuit filed by the
bankruptcy trustee controlling Bruce McNall's assets is "to have
last year's sale of the Kings voided" because new co-owners
Jeffrey Sudikoff and Joseph Cohen "failed to live up to an
earlier agreement to put $20 million into the franchise" (Lisa
Dillman, L.A. TIMES, 6/17).

     ESPN's Keith Olbermann reported Sunday night that the Kings'
financial situation "was so precarious during the season that the
NHL itself loaned several million dollars to the franchise to
keep it afloat."  Olbermann reported that sources "close to the
Kings' business operation," said that "deferred salary payments
to Wayne Gretzky have become such a hinderance to finding a new
owner that the league has discussed assuming those payments
itself or even dealing Gretzky off to a franchise willing to do
so -- possibly Toronto" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 6/18).
     LEGAL UNEASE:  One contention of the lawsuit filed by the
bankruptcy trustee controlling Bruce McNall's assets is "to have
last year's sale of the Kings voided" because new co-owners
Jeffrey Sudikoff and Joseph Cohen "failed to live up to an
earlier agreement to put $20 million into the franchise" (Lisa
Dillman, L.A. TIMES, 6/17).