Los Angeles Dodgers' owner Frank McCourt, embroiled in a messy divorce battle for over a year, has long maintained his desire to remain sole owner of the team, even after court proceedings that may have said otherwise. However, McCourt's continued ownership may have hit a rather large glitch. MLB commissioner Bud Selig has reportedly rejected a proposed $200 million loan to McCourt by Fox, which would have been secured by the Dodgers' television rights, according to Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times:â†µ
Selig made his decision several weeks ago. Since then, McCourt has continued to explore financing options that would enable him to satisfy the commissioner and manage a debt that, according to court records, exceeded $430 million as of November 2009.â†µ
Shaikin reported that the loan from Fox could have extended the Dodgers' TV rights for up to four years, if McCourt defaulted on the loan, in essence giving the Dodgers a television contract with Fox for $50 million per season. The Dodgers' current deal with Fox pays them an average of $37 million per season through 2013. Last month, Shaikin also reported that Fox advanced the Dodgers money on their current TV deal to help cover operating expenses.â†µ
The Dodgers' payroll in 2011 is estimated to be roughly $111 million, which includes over $16 million in deferred salaries and buyouts. The Dodgers open their spring training schedule on Saturday, with a pair of split squad games, in Tempe against the Angels and in Scottsdale against the Giants.â†µ
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