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Franchise Notes: Europe, Hawks, Anaheim, Kings

From the possibility of international expansion to an NBA owner making a bid for an MLB team, here are a few updates on the futures of the league and a few franchises:

  • Commissioner David Stern said the idea of NBA teams in Europe has been discussed, but it's not realistic for the near future: "It’s not the schedule and the traveling which is the problem. It’s the arenas, the ownership, the television arrangements, the pricing structure and the fan avidity. And it doesn’t pay to take anything for granted. It’s a nice thought. But basketball is not going to vend in Europe quite yet. It’s just growing. And it’s growing slowly but it’s growing nevertheless" (HoopsWorld link).
  • Stern added that would-be buyers have interest in the Hawks, but Atlanta's ownership group isn't currently entertaining the idea. The Hawks are "well down" on the league's list of worries, according to Stern.
  • Anaheim's Honda Center announced that its multi-million dollar renovation project is underway. As Arash Markazi of ESPN Los Angeles wrote last summer, Anaheim hopes the renovations help attract an NBA team to the home of the NHL's Ducks.
  • At one point, the Kings looked Anaheim-bound, and their situation is still tenuous. Tom Couzens of the Sacramento Bee says the Maloofs "are speaking volumes by saying nothing" about financial contribution toward the city's new arena.
  • Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley is leading one of the groups bidding on the Los Angeles Dodgers, reports Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times. Up against ten other suitors, Heisley's bid is "solid but a long shot," says Ronald Tillery of the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

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