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Volume 24 No. 158
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Franchise Notes

In Pittsburgh, Ed Bouchette notes the Steelers are “left without a place to stay Saturday night because their hotel in Jersey City, N.J., has no power.” The team will “fly to New York Sunday morning for their 4:25 p.m. game that day against the Giants.” The Steelers “checked area hotel rooms and were unable to find one close enough with enough vacant rooms.” An NFL rule “mandates that visiting teams arrive in the host city a day before a scheduled game, but that rule obviously had to be bypassed in this case as it has on other similar occasions” (PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 11/2).

ROUND 'EM UP: SI’s Michael Rosenberg cites a Harris Poll as showing that the Cowboys were the NFL’s “most popular team in each of the last five years, and this cuts across demographics.” They are “ranked No. 1 among women and No. 1 among Hispanics.” This would “all make perfect sense if the Cowboys were, you know, winning.” They have 3-4 record so far this season, yet the team remains “an enormous television draw and a persistent topic of national conversation.” Rosenberg: “Even if you can’t stand them, you can’t ignore them” (SI, 11/5 issue).

GREEN WITH ENVY: In Boston, Dan Shaughnessy writes, “Hard as it sometimes is to admit, the Celtics ownership group is doing a pretty good job.” This current Celtics group “has given us little to challenge,” as Managing Partners Wyc Grousbeck and Steve Pagliuca “are fans, but they aren’t calling plays from the bench.” They deliver “a pretty good product,” and they “haven’t insulted or pandered to their fans.” Shaughnessy: “We were skeptical about them in the early days, but as owners go, they have ranked surprisingly low on the buffoonery scale” (BOSTON GLOBE, 11/2).

FULL HOUSE: In N.Y., Marc Berman wrote, “No matter what happens, the Garden is expected to overflow with fans this season.” A Knicks spokesperson said that season tickets have “sold out for the second straight season, despite an average ticket price hike of 4.9 percent.” Last season was the “first time they sold out of season tickets" since '01-02. The Knicks credit "new amenities from the second phase of the MSG transformation with a new upper deck” for the season-ticket sellout (, 11/1).