MASN To Put $99.2M In Escrow Until Orioles, Nats Resolve Dispute
Orioles-controlled MASN will soon place about $99.2M into a private escrow account "pending its appeal of a decision that ran counter to the network in its broadcast rights fee dispute" with the Nationals, according to Jeff Barker of the BALTIMORE SUN. The move will "follow an Aug. 22 decision by New York Supreme Court Justice Joel M. Cohen awarding the Nationals the sum as additional rights fees from MASN" for '12-16. The money "would be on top" of the $197.6M that the Nationals "already received from the network during the period." MASN is "appealing Cohen’s ruling" to the Appellate Division. The Nationals "had argued" that the $99.2M "should be held in escrow by the court rather than 'a third party.'" N.Y.-based attorney Jonathan Schiller, who represents the Orioles and MASN, said that the court agreed yesterday to "permit a private escrow account to be used once MASN and the Nationals finalize the terms." The clubs are also "disputing how large an award the Nationals should reap from Cohen’s ruling, if it is sustained." While Cohen "gave the Nationals a victory" on TV broadcast rights fees, he "didn’t rule specifically on how to divide MASN profits for the five years in question" (BALTIMORE SUN, 11/26).