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Volume 24 No. 156

Leagues Governing Bodies

          A "confidential" report obtained by Al Strachan of the
     TORONTO SUN shows that while NHL ticket prices "were up an
     average of 6.6% throughout the league this season, after-tax
     gate receipts increased by only 3.3%."  One of the "main
     reasons" was the relocation of the Whalers to NC, "where the
     average after-tax gate was only $198,705."  But "even if the
     Carolina figures had matched those from Hartford, league-
     wide gate receipts would not have increased at the same rate
     as ticket prices."  All figures are in U.S. dollars.  Other
     numbers showed that the Canadiens "were the only Canadian
     team" in the upper half of the league's receipts, with the
     fifth-highest total at $31.17M.  That represented a drop of
     2.1% from last season, despite a 1.8% increase in the team's
     average ticket prices.  Vancouver and Toronto rank 15th and
     16th in the league and have "similar totals," a little more
     than $21M.  Strachan writes that the Flames rank 24th in
     receipts and are "in danger of having the league's lowest
     gate receipts within two years."  Among the Stanley Cup
     participants, the Red Wings had the third-highest gate
     receipt in the league, while the Capitals are second-to-
     last, ahead of only Carolina (TORONTO SUN, 6/16). 
          BONUS BABIES: With final figures yet to be determined,
     the total amount of monetary awards provided by the NHL for
     playoff and regular season bonuses will be $11M, an increase
     of $1M from last season.  Of the $10M awarded last year,
     nearly $7M went to playoff bonuses (WASHINGTON POST, 6/16).

          MLB: In Denver, local ticket agents say that the
     "marked-up resales" of All-Star Game tickets are "flat." 
     Rock & Jock Tickets Owner Bruce Brown: "It is looking like
     tickets will be readily available" (DENVER POST, 6/15).     
     ...In Philadelphia, Jayson Stark wrote the "latest buzz" is
     that agent Scott Boras "may take some of his high-profile
     clients," such as J.D. Drew, and seek citizenship in some
     draft-exempt country such as Costa Rica.  Then they could
     become free agents "and could start up a hot bidding war,"
     similar to Cuban players (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 6/14). 
          TURNER/NBC FOOTBALL: In Boston, Will McDonough reported
     on the NBC/Turner football league and said that Ted Turner
     and "his aids in Atlanta are carrying the ball and doing all
     the research and development, with NBC waiting to see the
     final product" (BOSTON GLOBE, 6/13).  BLOOMBERG'S Rick
     Westhead wrote under the header, "Players In Europe Pinning
     Hopes On Proposed NBC/Turner League" (SAN DIEGO UNION-
     TRIBUNE, 6/14).  Brian Ransom, agent for Rams CB Ryan McNeil
     is "threatening" to take his client to the new league in
     '99.  Ransom: "I'd like to find out how soon their plans are
     finalized" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 6/14).
          OTHER NOTES: On Friday, 73 people watched the USBL Long
     Island Surf-Atlanta Trojans game at Stony Brook Indoor sport
     complex.  Surf CEO Steve Shillet: "I don't understand why
     Long Island doesn't support a Long Island team" (NEWSDAY,
     6/15)....The Nuveen Tour's BTI Championships in Raleigh, NC,
     "easily cleared their total attendance goal of 20,000" for
     the week.  BTI Tournament Director Karen Happer said that
     attendance could hit 22,000-23,000 (NEWS & OBSERVER, 6/15).