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Volume 24 No. 115
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Franchise Notes

BLOOMBERG NEWS' Fedorinova & Panja report Arsenal investor Alisher Usmanov "won't sell his stake" in the EPL club after Stan Kroenke "triggered a mandatory buyout offer by boosting his holding to about" 63%. Usmanov, who owns 27% of the club, said, "I’m not going to sell. I love Arsenal, that’s why I’m a shareholder." Though Kroenke "can pay himself a dividend, he won't be allowed to withdraw management fees from Arsenal." He has said that the takeover "won't be debt-financed" (, 4/13). The GUARDIAN's Matt Scott reports Red & White Holdings, the investment group owned by Usmanov, "will seek greater clarity" about Kroenke's intended takeover. Similarly, the Arsenal Supporters' Trust, a minority shareholders group, "will this week send a letter to Kroenke outlining its position ahead of the distribution of his formal offer document" (GUARDIAN, 4/13).

NO SHARING : City of San Antonio Dir of Convention, Sports & Entertainment Facilities Michael Sawaya yesterday said that the Cowboys are "planning to hold their training camp entirely in San Antonio this summer." Sawaya: "If there is a season and there is a camp, they are going to be here for the whole camp." In San Antonio, Tom Orsborn notes the Cowboys "trained for two weeks in San Antonio last summer before practicing for another two weeks in Oxnard, Calif." Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones "has said repeatedly that he wanted to split camp again this year," but Sawaya said that Cowboys Dir of Marketing John Hickman "told him last week Oxnard is out of the picture at least for this summer." Sawaya said that the Alamodome is "holding dates open for a camp that would begin in late July and run through mid-August." The Cowboys "trained for a month last season because they played five preseason games rather than the usual four" (SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS, 4/13).

GIVE THE DEVILS THEIR DUE: In New Jersey, John Brennan reported a Devils official said that the team already has "added more than 1,000 new full-season ticketholders for next season," despite recording its first sub-.500 season and only second non-playoff season since '88-89. In addition, the Devils official indicated that early season-ticket renewals are "up more than 20 percent compared to this time last year." Devils fans said that the "intensity level" for games at Prudential Center later in the season "was remarkable -- even unprecedented -- for regular-season contests." Brennan: "What that did was demonstrate to casual fans who haven’t experienced NHL playoff hockey, due to prices or a misperception that all the games are long sold out, how dramatic an NHL building can get when the pressure is on" (, 4/11).

FIT FOR THE KINGS: In L.A., Hoornstra & Berka reported Kings President of Business Operations Luc Robitaille "jumped at the chance to return" to Europe to start the '11-12 NHL season when he was approached by the league. The AEG-owned Kings will play regular-season games in Sweden and Germany, and Robitaille said, "The buildings that we're playing in are part of the AEG family." He noted that the Kings "will play three road games against East Coast-based teams after returning from Europe" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 4/12).