Thursday, December 08, 2011

All The Dodgers News That's Fit To Print

The NYT had two articles on the the Dodgers yesterday, first on Magic Johnson becoming the new face of potential ownership:

“Is it possible to care about winning more than Magic?” Kaplan asked. “This is brilliant casting. I can’t think of somebody who people can invest hope for the future in more than Magic.” He added: “He doesn’t need the prestige ownership would give him. He’s already got that. He’s not marrying up to do this.”

Johnson and his team would not be the only suitor capable of rescuing the Dodgers. Peter O’Malley, the former owner, brings the prestige of his family’s 47-year stewardship of the franchise. Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, offers energy and intensity. Dennis Gilbert, the former player agent who now works for the Chicago White Sox, is close to Commissioner Bud Selig and was an early and acceptable bidder for the Rangers. Hershiser and Garvey bring a pairing from the team’s not-so-distant glory days.

“Dodger fans are clamoring for stability,” said David Carter, the director of the sports business institute at the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, “and they can’t wait to have an owner who they feel has a vested interest in what they believe is their team. He has extraordinary good will, his media relations are fantastic and he’s well-connected throughout the region, including City Hall.”

But does a Johnson-led group have any advantage?

It is too early to tell. The Dodgers’ investment banker, Blackstone Advisory Partners, has not sent out the offering book on the team that will start the bidding, which will be overseen by a federal bankruptcy court judge. McCourt placed the team in bankruptcy last June.

Not all the potential bidders have spoken publicly and none of them have been as open as Johnson. Upon announcing his bid last week, he publicly positioned himself as a McCourt alternative whom McCourt should like. Indeed, Johnson offered the beleaguered McCourt the type of praise that, of late, he probably could not find outside his own court filings.

“Frank McCourt did some things right and I wanted to recognize those things,” Johnson told The Los Angeles Times. “He put money into the ballpark, he put money into the community, he signed Matt Kemp, the cupboard is not bare, and I wanted him to know that I respected and appreciated all of that.”

Johnson went on to say, "Now don't let the door hit you on the ass on the way out, Frankie!" Actually, he didn't--and it's remarkable that Johnson is so poised even with a target who is ripe for the flogging. Who knows, maybe Frank McCourt will be so moved by Magic's gesture that he'll just sign over the parking lots, too. Right?

Speaking of parking lots, the second article was a blogpost about all the complications of this pending sale:

According to the motion [filed by the Dodgers], which will be heard on Dec. 27:

McCourt does not have to sell the parking lots and surrounding land at Dodger Stadium. He is only required to rent their use to the new buyer. But potential buyers can bid for the assets, which are owned by a McCourt subsidiary.

M.L.B. must stay neutral in the dispute between the Dodgers and Fox Sports, whose Prime Ticket channel has a contract to carry the team’s games through 2013. Baseball must also withdraw any previous pleadings that backed Fox’s position against the Dodgers accelerating the process of selling the TV rights after 2013.

Baseball cannot interfere in the team’s control of the sale. In strong language, the Dodgers said in the filing that the agreement “provides for the sale to be conducted in a manner that will be under the direction of the debtors” — the team — “and its financial advisor” entirely to “maximize value and not for any other purpose.”

Now remember, this is only one side's proposal. Let's hope this process is smooth and this deal is unencumbered and move on!

19 comments:

Franklin Stubbs said...

Yeah, the parking lot issues squick ever-so-slightly. I'm crossing my fingers that Frank gets an offer he can't refuse and totally disentangles himself from the team by unloading the land as well.

Fred's Brim said...

There's no way the break can be clean, but it has to be complete, one way or another. I would personally add in an extra million to any offer just to see Frank literally run out of town on a rail, a la the "Real" Seymour Skinner.

Dusty Baker said...

And here's some news that's not, perhaps, fit to print. At least in terms of not wanting to break our collective fragile psyche:

Albert Pujols is an Angel

Dusty Baker said...

^ As in the kind who hails from Los An...I mean Anaheim.

Dusty Baker said...

ps- WTF is the story that VSIMH is reporting re JLo being arrested in November???

http://www.vinscullyismyhomeboy.com/2011/12/james-loney-was-arrested-last-month.html

Fernie V said...

http://www.vinscullyismyhomeboy.com/2011/12/james-loney-was-arrested-last-month.html?m=1

Bring back the Free James Loney sign.

Fernie V said...

Oh shit DB I am like 10 minutes behind you. WTF, and we make no offer for Pujos. I would of been pissed at a 10 year offer, but at least make an attempt.

Mr. LA Sports Czar said...

Does that mean Kendry(s) is available?

Franklin Stubbs said...

(cries)

Franklin Stubbs said...

Shades of Vladimir Guerrero, anyone?

Fernie V said...

And CJ Wilson, how do we sign these crappy guys and the other guys have these big balls.

Mr. LA Sports Czar said...

Buck up, guys, we just traded Dana Eveland for Jarret Martin and a PTBNL!

Fernie V said...

DB, a friend of mine just text me about Loney, He passed a drug test, then he is just crazy.

Fernie V said...

WTF! Mr needs a shorter name!

Dusty Baker's Toothpick said...

Did the Halos just sign Wilson too?

Fred's Brim said...

Sounds like Loney got a bad batch of Fairy Blow

Spank said...

Bring back Greg Brock!

Fernie V said...

DB T, you are correct sir.

Dusty Baker said...

@FV both crazy and with no power