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Volume 24 No. 156

Franchises

          Toronto businessman Lawrence Heisey confirmed that he
     is part of the consortium headed by Murray Frum that is
     bidding to acquire the Blue Jays (TORONTO STAR, 4/29)....NBA
     Commissioner David Stern said he "doesn't plan to pressure"
     the Clippers, who finished last in the league in attendance,
     to move to the Pond at Anaheim (L.A. TIMES, 4/29)....ESPN's
     "SportsCenter" examined the success of the Mariners.  Post-
     Intelligencer columnist Art Thiel: "Their campaign, 'You've
     got to love these guys,' has worked very, very well because
     you do."  Pitcher Norm Charlton: "We've got a bunch of
     players that are very likeable by the fans, kids can look up
     to them.  They're not getting into a fight twice a week, or
     they're not getting pulled over with a gun in their car or
     drugs in their car" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 4/28).

          Sales of Super Bowl merchandise, "most of it featuring"
     the Packers, hit a record-setting $130M, according to NFL
     Properties documents cited by Larry Weisman in USA TODAY. 
     The previous record was $100M for '96's Cowboys-Steelers
     Super Bowl XXX.  Among the sales breakdown: Logo Athletic's
     selling of 650,000 Packers' locker-room hats.  The previous
     high for such hats was 400,000 Bulls hats after they won the
     NBA title last year; NFL Films' Packers highlights video
     selling more than 65,000 copies in its first five days,
     making it the fastest-selling sports video ever.  Another
     64,000 sold the next week; and the NFL selling 950,000 Super
     Bowl programs, topping the record of 700,000 for the '86
     Bears-Patriots Super Bowl XX (USA TODAY, 4/29).
          TRUST FUND BABY: Packers President Bob Harlan said he
     hoped to start a trust fund this fall for a new stadium if
     the NFL approves a plan for the team to sell shares of
     stock, according to Cliff Christl of the MILWAUKEE JOURNAL
     SENTINEL.  Harlan "said he was not sounding any alarms," but
     "said he though it was imperative" that the team start
     planning for a new stadium (JOURNAL-SENTINEL, 4/29).

          Raleigh's "latest flirtation" with the NHL "is starting
     to look very serious," as Whalers Owner Peter Karmanos said
     Monday evening that his decision to relocate to Raleigh,
     N.C. or Columbus, OH, would "come in the next few days." 
     Raleigh's Centennial Authority overseeing the city's planned
     arena has hired Maryland Stadium Authority Chair John Moag,
     who was the lead negotiator in bringing the NFL back to
     Baltimore.  Moag "is expected to contact" Karmanos today
     (Raleigh NEWS & OBSERVER, 4/29).  The Durham Herald-Sun this
     morning quotes Raleigh Chamber of Commerce President Harvey
     Schmitt as saying, "Get ready to lace up your skates."  The
     HARTFORD COURANT's Greg Garber notes "in private
     conversations in recent days, Whalers executives have taken
     to speaking highly of Raleigh, while acknowledging problems
     in Columbus."  The Hockey News is also predicting the team
     will land in Raleigh as the league "does not want to
     alienate" Lamar Hunt, who is bidding for an NHL team in
     Columbus (HARTFORD COURANT, 4/29).

          Today, THE DAILY continues our MLB team profiles with a     look at the Cubs.  The Tribune Co. owns the team, WGN-AM,     WGN-TV and ChicagoLand TV.  On deck: The Blue Jays.
TEAM:
Chicago Cubs
'97 SLOGAN:
None
PLAYERS FEATURED:
Mark Grace, Brian McRae, Shawon Dunston, Ryne Sandberg, Sammy Sosa (print ads)
PAYROLL:
$39,829,333 (14 of 28)
SEASON-TICKET BASE:
approx. 15,000 (9,000 full; 6,000 partial)
SELECT KEY SPONSORS:
A-B, PepsiCo, Chrysler, Lincoln Mercury, Chicago Tribune, Southwest Airlines
OUTFIELD WALL ADS:
None
VIRTUAL ADVERTISING:
None
WEB SITE:
www.cubs.com
SITE DESIGNER:
Chicago-based Tribune Media Services
WEB SITE ADVERTISING:
Handled by team
BROADCAST TV:
WGN-TV
GAMES/YEAR IN DEAL/$:
140+/na/na
SALES RESPONSIBILITY:
Station
CABLE TV:
ChicagoLand TV
GAMES/YEAR IN DEAL/$:
11/na/na
SALES RESPONSIBILITY:
Station
RADIO:
WGN-AM
GAMES/YEAR/$:
162/na/na
SALES RESPONSIBILITY:
Station
NOTES: Team payroll comes from USA TODAY figures. Length of deal and rights fee for TV and radio packages come from Broadcasting & Cable, 3/31 issue.

          The White Sox have "backed down" from their policy
     requiring fans who want tickets to the series with the Cubs
     in June to buy seats for three other games, according to the
     CHICAGO SUN-TIMES.  Fans who did purchase "4-Pack" tickets
     will get first choice at buying the best remaining upper-
     deck seats for the Cubs series, with season-ticket holders
     and group customers following in priority (CHICAGO SUN
     TIMES, 4/29).  In Chicago, Steve Rosenbloom notes that until
     May 27, tickets to the Cubs games can only be bought inside
     Comiskey Park.  Rosenbloom notes White Sox Chair Jerry
     Reinsdorf "instituted the plan because he didn't want Cubs
     fans showing up.  Now, apparently, he'll settle for anyone
     showing up" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 4/29).