Jewish World Review Feb. 19, 2003 / 17 Adar I, 5763

Evan Weiner

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The bills have come due


http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | There are presently 121 "major league teams" playing in the NBA, NHL, NFL and Major League Baseball. But The Wall Street Journal claims that as many as 29 of them are available for the right price.

The economic world of the early 21st century is far different than it was in the late 20th century. Stocks were at all time high, and a lot of people couldn't wait to bid on sport teams that came on the market or became available when leagues started to expand. League expansion went hand in hand with municipal spending on stadiums and arenas. Apparently that has all changed.

A brand name such as the Los Angeles Dodgers is available. So is the 2002 World Series champion Anaheim Angels. The Milwaukee Bucks are for sale, the Montreal Expos could be purchased and moved. The NHL has two bankrupt franchises and others in that league are said to be in bad fiscal shape. The NBA has moved two franchises in the past two years.

In the 1990s, the sky seemed to be the only limitation on the major league sports industry. In 2003, the bills have come due.

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JWR contributor Evan Weiner is a radio commentator on "The Business of Sports" for Westwood One's Metro Networks. Comment on this column by clicking here.

Up

02/18/03: The world may be falling apart ... but American baseball teams are more popular than ever overseas
02/14/03: Adding jocks to the state's payrolls
02/13/03: How can the financially struggling Cablevision bail out another NHL franchise?
02/12/03: Selig is undermining sports franchises
02/11/03: Politicians and business leaders want to join a business that admits it's failing financially
02/10/03: Hold the pols responsible for rate hikes!
02/07/03: Judge a team's future by journalist's job?
02/05/03: College Sports and priorities
02/04/03: While corporate America parties, one wonders about the world's largest communications company and its future
02/03/03: High schooler picked the wrong $port to excel at
01/31/03: Gaming and games
01/30/03: The NHL's game plan
01/29/03: The moral guardians of basketball need some schooling themselves
01/24/03: America's excuse for a party
01/22/03: Turning San Diego into an armed camp
01/22/03: Will San Diego lose on Sunday --- even if it wins?

© 2003, Evan Weiner