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Volume 24 No. 135
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Franchise Notes

In Raleigh, Luke DeCock writes the Hurricanes are "back where they were before the lockout -- watching good players leave, with no chance of replacing them with free agents." Their "bottom-line losses may not be as high as they used to be, thanks to revenue sharing from the NHL, but the competitive imbalance is almost as large." The Hurricanes are "going to end up spending more than $10 million less than wealthier teams." The current salary-cap system was "supposed to fix all this, but a number of factors -- including a stronger Canadian dollar and bigger television contracts -- have grown leaguewide revenues much faster than teams like the Hurricanes have been able to grow within their markets" (Raleigh NEWS & OBSERVER, 6/21).

STATING THEIR CASE: In N.Y., Teri Thompson reports Mets owners Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz "cited false allegations and overwrought claims in a 68-page memorandum of law they filed Monday night in support of their motion to dismiss the $1 billion lawsuit filed against them by" Bernie Madoff trustee Irving Picard. The memorandum indicated that Picard's "allegations that he has an 'ample array' of proof that Wilpon and Katz were 'willfully blind' to Madoff's Ponzi scheme are unsupported and contradicted by the depositions Picard has gathered" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 6/21).

CRAB CAKES AND HOCKEY: The Capitals yesterday officially announced that they will play the Predators in a Sept. 20 preseason game at Baltimore's 1st Mariner Arena. The game, dubbed the "Baltimore Hockey Classic," will mark the "first Caps game in Maryland since moving downtown from Landover in 1997." Capitals Vice Chair, President & COO Dick Patrick: "We always have receive strong support from Baltimoreans. This preseason game is an opportunity for us to take Caps hockey to them" (, 6/20).

In New Jersey, Al Iannazzone reported Newark "has some major players and is looking for more in its quest for an NBA team to call Prudential Center home after the Nets leave for Brooklyn." The "most prominent booster is Newark Mayor Cory Booker." Booker said, "We're definitely engaging in conversations with folks who have put out feelers about the potential for our arena to host an NBA team. There are definitely a number of teams struggling in their current arenas. That gives me signs of hope. I think it's an uphill battle, but I think it's a winnable battle" (Bergen RECORD, 6/20).