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Preparing the new Dodgers owners for their first news conference

May 02, 2012|By Steve Dilbeck
  • Magic Johnson, left, Stan Kasten and Mark Walter are all part of the new Dodgers ownership group. But exactly who owns what?
Magic Johnson, left, Stan Kasten and Mark Walter are all part of the new Dodgers… (Chis Weeks / Associated…)

As Frank McCourt could tell you, at Dodgers Now, I’m here to help. Just a constant flow of upbeat suggestions. Been sending positive energy to the Dodgers long before McCourt discovered any Russian psychic.

And because today is the big debut of the Dodgers' new ownership group, I thought it was only fair to offer a few suggestions on how to handle their morning news conference.

Here is the No. 1 message: Be forthcoming. Simple, I know, but it's amazing how many mess this one up. Be honest, don't hide behind legal this or privacy that.

Answer the following questions sincerely and you'll be off to an encouraging start. In fact, feel free to take this handy little list with you, answer them all upfront and you can go right to the softball stuff from the TV guys.

1) How could you spend a record $2.15 billion to buy the team and still have McCourt hanging around as half-owner of the parking lots?

Fear you've all badly miscalculated the animosity in this city toward McCourt. There are plenty of fans who deserted the team last season who claim they're not coming back until he’s completely gone.

2) Exactly who owns what? From Mark Walter, to Guggenheim Financial, Stan Kasten, Magic Johnson, Peter Guber, to anyone else?

Walter is the control person? Is that even a term? I thought that’s what older brothers were.

3) What is the precise ownership arrangement on the parking lots? Do you have final control? First right of refusal if McCourt decides to sell? Is it a pure lease, and for how long?

4) What happens if Guggenheim Financial decides to can Walter? Does it bow out? Appoint a new control person?

5) What exactly are your plans for Dodger Stadium? A freshening up, a major makeover, something more dramatic? If you need more land to pull it off, do you have to buy half of it from McCourt? What if he doesn’t want to sell?

6) Who is really running this show? Who makes the final call when serious money is involved?

Kasten is a highly respected baseball executive, but how much freedom to sign players does he actually have?

7) What exactly is Magic’s role? Magic said he'll be at the stadium every day. Doing what? Is he just a beloved local face for the team?

And is he still going to do his NBA commentary and inner-city development and run all his other businesses too? How much can he realistically do?

8) Is this the final ownership group or are you still looking for local investors? And have you ever heard of the Dilbeck Investment Group?

9) Walter is apparently a very private person. Is he going to be visible, accessible and accountable, or hide in Chicago the way the Kings' Philip Anschutz does his recluse thing in Denver?

10) Has McCourt sued you yet?

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Preparing the new Dodgers owners for their first news conference

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