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Volume 24 No. 113

Franchises

     Although "he won't admit it publicly," Seahawks Owner Ken
Behring "appears ready to listen to sales pitches" from potential
buyers willing to keep the team in Seattle, according to John
Clayton of the Tacoma NEWS-TRIBUNE.  Clayton lists Microsoft Co-
Founder Paul Allen, who is "in position to write a check without
thinking;" the Nordstrom family; Nike's Phil Knight; and the
McCaw Family, owners of Vancouver's Orca Bay Entertainment.
Clayton reports that Behring sent for the team's financial
records at their WA office "to present to Allen or other
potential investors," and predicts that "Allen and Behring
probably will sit across the table and discuss numbers."  Clayton
also notes Behring has talked with former Seahawks partner Ken
Hoffman about buying into Hoffman's 50% share of the A's, "so
he'll be able to stay in sports" (Tacoma NEWS-TRIBUNE, 2/20).

     A poll in the Nashville TENNESSEAN shows that the deal to
finance the Oilers' move has support among Davidson County
voters.  In Houston, John Williams reports that 53% of Nashville-
area residents approve of a plan to raise the city's share of
$140M for a new Oilers stadium through water and sewer fees,
while 34% oppose.  However, 58% said they would want a
referendum.  Meanwhile, the TN House Finance Committee approved a
bill Tuesday to pay for the state's $80M portion.  The Nashville
Metro Council will likely vote February 27 on whether to finance
the city's obligation through water and sewer fees (HOUSTON
CHRONICLE, 2/21).

     Osceola County, a largely rural area just south of Orlando,
offered Hillsborough County "an olive branch" Tuesday after Tampa
area officials threatened a $500M lawsuit over attempts to lure
the Bucs from Tampa.  Osceola County Chair Jim Norman said his
government is not trying to "pirate" the team, but "stopped short
of suspending talks with Bucs officials."  The team's lease with
Hillsborough County has them in Tampa Stadium through 2000, but
they have a buyout option.  Hillsborough officials say they will
file a suit against any body involved in trying to lure their
team away -- be it another state or a FL county (Charean Williams
ORLANDO SENTINEL, 2/21).  Meanwhile, in Tampa, Joe Henderson
notes Hillsborough officials say the Bucs may have a response to
local proposals to keep the team moving "by this weekend."  The
Bucs have had only one official meeting with Tampa officials
since January 10 (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 2/21).

     ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported that at least one NFL team
has filed a complaint with the league that Jaguars VP of Football
Operations Michael Huyghue "has bent the free agent rules," such
as when he attended the Pro Bowl and stayed at the players' hotel
("SportsCenter," 2/20).... Indianapolis will have a team in the
CISL for the '96 season.  The yet-to-be-named team will play at
Market Square Arena.  Ownership details will be announced
Thursday (CISL). ....Representatives from the Rams will tour the
facilities at Univ. of WI-Stephens Point and Univ. of WI-Eau
Claire on Thursday.  The team is considering moving its training
camp to WI (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 2/21)....The AHL Cape
Breton Oilers may be forced move due to local economic problems.
Possible sites:  Lexington, KY; Lowell, MA; or Scranton/Wilkes-
Barre, PA (EDMONTON JOURNAL, 2/21).

     The Royals will launch a new marketing campaign with the
tagline "Get in the Game," featuring legend George Brett and
"wunderkind" Johnny Damon in a TV spot they hope mixes "the
Royals' winning tradition with a bright-looking future."  The
K.C. STAR's Dick Kaegel writes that Brett "more than anyone, says
'Royals' to the public."  In the spot, Brett and Damon are shown
watching TV and "battling over the remote control," as Brett
continually flips back to clips showing highlights of his career,
while Damon opts for clips featuring himself.  The Royals are
also addressing several other areas in an attempt to boost
"sagging" ticket sales from last season.  The Royals recently
became the final MLB team to have a computerized ticketing
system, as it inked a deal with Ticketmaster.  Royals GM Herk
Robinson said the team will offer tickets with only a $1 service
fee -- the lowest in MLB -- covering any additional costs.  The
team is also offering family nights, they staged an offseason
caravan tour, and will premiere a mascot during its April 5 home
opener against Boston (K.C. STAR, 2/21).