HOWARD SMITH was named VP/Licensing at MLB Properties.
Smith comes from Reebok Int'l, where he served as Group Dir
of Sports Marketing. Also, Group Dir of Licensing for Adult
Wearable and Client Services MARLA MILLER was promoted to
VP/Events (MLBP)....JUD PERKINS, VP & GM of Leisure
Management Int'l in FL, will leave June 5 to oversee
construction of the new Dallas arena. Perkins had served as
the Manager of the Broward County Arena. Arena development
Co. President ALEX MUXO will assume Perkins' duties until a
successor is named (Fort Lauderdale SUN-SENTINEL, 5/22).
MARTINA HINGIS is the "towering female tennis player
of the present day, the only woman on the tour who really
matters," according to Alan Richman, who profiles Hingis in
a GQ cover story. Richman: "With Hingis time passes not
just painlessly but pleasurably. Considering her one-
dimensional past, it's hard to imagine how she turned out so
well" (GQ, 6/98 issue)....RICHARD WILLIAMS, the father of
VENUS and SERENA WILLIAMS, is profiled by Douglas Looney in
today's CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR. Looney, who calls
Richard's approach with his daughters "unconventional":
"[I]n a world in which there is near unanimous agreement
that 14 is way too young for a little girl to become a
touring professional, this most protective of all the
parents abruptly decided that would be the proper next step"
(CSM, 5/22)....NBA Coach of the Year LARRY BIRD "declined to
confirm" that he would return next year to coach the Pacers
again. Bird: "We'll see" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 5/22).
...Former Jets head coach RICH KOTITE will play a coach in a
film starring KELSEY GRAMMER. The film is "Jersey
Turnpikers" (N.Y. TIMES, 5/22)....A grand jury will not
indict either Wizards F JUWAN HOWARD or Kings F CHRIS WEBBER
for an alleged sexual assault (WASHINGTON POST, 5/22).
Zapata Corp., the former oil company controlled by Bucs
Owner MALCOLM GLAZER, offered yesterday to buy Internet
search directory Excite for nearly $1.7B, but the offer "was
immediately rejected by the company and ridiculed by some
analysts," according to the TAMPA TRIBUNE. Excite cited the
"complete lack of synergy" and gaping differences in market
value between the two companies (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 5/22). In
N.Y., Reed Abelson reports that Zapata CEO AVRAM GLAZER,
"cannot understand why he is not getting more respect," as
his company aims to become more involved in the Internet.
Glazer: "If you look at my family's history, we have a
history of going in on new things." Zapata's shares fell
87.5 cents, to close yesterday at $10.50. Excite's shares
rose 81.25 cents, to close at $61 (N.Y. TIMES, 5/22).
HICK'S LATEST PRIZE: Sources of DAILY VARIETY's Richard
Morgan say that HICKS, MUSE, TATE & FURST has won the
auction for Pulitzer Publishing Co.'s TV properties and
"plans to fold the nine network-affiliated stations into
Hicks Muse-controlled Chancellor Media Corp." The deal is
expected to be valued at $1.8B (DAILY VARIETY, 5/22).
Stars/Rangers Owner TOM HICKS is featured in a FORBES cover
story. Matthew Schifrin writes that Hicks "rules over more
than 400 radio stations in 100 markets across the U.S," has
combined radio revenues of $1.5B and is "by no means
finished building his media empire" (FORBES, 6/1 issue).