Group Created with Sketch.
Volume 24 No. 117

Leagues Governing Bodies

     Toronto will host the American Bowl game between the Cowboys
and the Bills at SkyDome Saturday. Since the "day the [Sky] Dome
opened, there has been little doubt that this is a stadium -- and
a city -- in waiting for the NFL," writes Ken McKee in the
TORONTO STAR.  SkyDome VP/Corporate Affairs David Garrick: "We
are trying to make an impression on the NFL ... this will be
bigger than the Grey Cup (in attendance, merchandise sales,
etc.)."  Garrick says attendance for the game will hit 55,000,
with tickets at C$35 (TORONTO STAR, 8/10).

     "Insurgent agents greeted the latest agreement between the
NBA and the players' union they tried to take over as if it had
arrived on their doorsteps ticking," writes Mark Heisler in
today's LOS ANGELES TIMES.  "They didn't endorse the deal, but
after a summer of sticking pins into the union and league
leaders, they simply might not have felt like it.  However, there
were no ringing denunciations, either, suggesting a grudging
approval."  Agent Fred Slaughter:  "Maybe we have a good deal
here, but I said that in July, and it didn't turn out that way,
so we'll see."  Leonard Armato, Shaquille O'Neal's agent: "I was
not in support of the old deal, but the new deal I am supportive
of.  I think it's a fair compromise of the forces out there and I
feel my guys are protected."  Agent Keith Glass:  "I think it
puts everybody on hold, at least.  Everybody has accused
everybody of having different agendas.  My agenda is very clear
from the first day.  I need a deal that isn't going to kill my
players" (Mark Heisler, L.A. TIMES, 8/10).
     MORE AGENT REAX:  Arn Tellem:  "If it turns out to be a deal
that the players feel positive about, my sense is decertification
will go away.  On the other hand, if it's a deal players are
still not happy with and don't think is fair, the players will
continue to fight."  Marc Fleisher:  "We will be asking the
league and the union to provide us with as much information as
possible for our clients so they can educate themselves" (Murray
Chass, N.Y. TIMES, 8/10). Henry Thomas:  "It's a move in the
right direction.  Whether it's something a majority of the
players will be in favor of remains to be seen" (CHICAGO SUN
TIMES, 8/10).  Jimmy Sexton:  "Look, we're never going to win a
lot of popularity contests anyway.  Our job right now is to see
what's in the new agreement so we can advise our players."  Mark
Bartelstein:  "Now the players are in a difficult position where
they have to be the bad guys if they turn it down" (CHICAGO
TRIBUNE, 8/10).  Frank Catipano:  "I'm telling my players the
deal still stinks.  I'll tell them, 'Here's what you get.  What
do you think of it?'" (Phil Sheridan, PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER,
8/10).  Bill Strickland:  "The good thing is that there's time to
look at this deal and digest it.  The players didn't even have 24
hours to consider the last one.  They'll look at it and decide
for themselves" (WASHINGTON POST, 8/10).
     FROM KESSLER:  Antitrust lawyer Jeffrey Kessler:  "If this
turned out to be a great deal for the players, we would be happy.
In fact we would be proud that we had gotten a better deal for
the players, but that's not the case right now.  This deal is
nothing but re-arranging the terms of the other deal" (ORLANDO
SENTINEL, 8/10).  More Kessler:  "The players who supported
decertification are skeptical but open minded.  We want to
understand all the details before making judgements" (Roger

     The NBA and NBPA are waiting until after the results of the
NLRB decertification election are announced on September 12 to
ask owners and union members to ratify the new deal, but that is
not holding back reactions this morning.
     UNION LEADERSHIP:  Union President Buck Williams:  "All the
hard work lies ahead of us.  We have to put a lot of time and
effort into explaining this agreement to make sure the players
are informed."  Williams, on the decertification effort:  "There
is no chance in the world this movement will go away.  These
insurgents are committed to the decertification effort.  There is
no way they will retreat after taking such a hard-line position.
They will counter with some sort of attack. ... If this deal is
not ratified, it's beyond me" (David Moore, DALLAS MORNING NEWS,
8/10).  NBPA VP Charles Smith: "I think this is a great deal for
us.  I think we will be able to get this ratified."  NBPA Exec
Dir Simon Gourdine:  "None of the dissidents were involved in
this agreement. But as we convey the message, we will remind the
players and those that are close to them that we are still one
union and it's important we operate as one strong unit.  I'm very
optimistic that as the word gets out, language from dissident
players will be less vitriolic" (George Diaz, ORLANDO SENTINEL,
     PLAYER REPS:  ORLANDO -- Magic player rep Donald Royal:  "I
can't believe that this deal won't go through"(ORLANDO SENTINEL,
8/10). CLEVELAND -- Cavaliers player rep Danny Ferry:  "The
decertification side should take some credit in this deal getting
better.  And they should take credit in getting more people
involved and concerned with what was going on.  Initially, I
think both sides were dealing with a pretty apathetic group.  But
this has been a positive thing" (Mark Asher/Richard Justice,
WASHINGTON POST, 8/10).  CHICAGO -- Bulls player rep Steve Kerr:
"Obviously, getting rid of the luxury tax was key, and maybe
that'll make the deal more attractive to guys like Michael, who's
looking to sign that big deal. ... It's not a perfect deal, but
if it was a perfect deal then the owners wouldn't be in favor of
it"  (John Jackson, CHICAGO SUN TIMES, 8/10). ATLANTA -- Hawks
player rep Andrew Lang:  "It's time to come on board. ... We have
the opportunity to come out of this with revenue that is
respectable and fair and one that makes sense from the owners and
the players standpoint." (Jeffrey Denberg, ATLANTA JOURNAL
CONSTITUTION, 8/10).  SALT LAKE CITY --  Jazz Player Rep John
Stockton:  "Everybody talks about how we have to sell it to all
the players.  But to me, it's not as much about selling as it is
informing.  Once everybody knows what this deal is all about it's
no contest....On one hand, we have come up with a very good deal
-- a very good deal.  On the other hand, we go to court and roll
the dice.  What would you do?" (Steve Luhm, SALT LAKE TRIBUNE,
8/10).  PHOENIX -- Suns player rep Joe Kleine:  "The agents are
probably going to crucify this deal.  But I'm pleased with it"
(Bob Young, ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 8/10).

     United Baseball League officials are seeking permission to
build a $12M ballpark in Suffolk County, NY and are asking local
officials to contribute $7M-$10M in road, parking and sewer
improvements. The UBL wants to build a 20,000-seat ballpark on
the Brentwood campus of Suffolk Community College for a Long
Island team (NEWSDAY, 8/9).