Fox and Dodgers bury the hatchet


The attempt to sell the Los Angeles Dodgers may now go forward unburdened by any legal actions by Fox Sports – good news for the Dodgers. And no attempt will be made to sell future broadcast rights for Dodgers baseball games – good new for Fox.

The troubled franchise went into bankruptcy during the summer of 2011, and had explored the possibility of selling future broadcast rights as a means of increasing the value of the franchise in advance of putting it on the market.

That will not happen now – the team will be sold on its merits and sale of future broadcast rights will be part of the future.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the Dodger’s Frank McCourt remains obliged to repay a $30M loan received from Fox last spring that helped it meet payroll obligations.

Both sides weighed in on the end to hostilities.

The Los Angeles Dodgers stated, “This agreement is a significant step towards a successful sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers.  It resolves all of the parties’ differences relating to the Telecast Rights Agreement with Fox. This consensual resolution of all disputes between the Debtors and Fox will enable the sale of the Dodgers to proceed forward, free of any uncertainty relating to the various issues under dispute, with the continued objective of maximizing value for the Debtors and their estates.”

Fox Sports said, “We are pleased that these matters between our two organizations have been resolved. We were never in favor of litigation, but it was imperative that we protect our exclusive media rights. Under the terms of the settlement, Fox’s media rights remain in place and we look forward to working with new ownership on future television rights discussions.”

RBR-TVBR observation: We guess that the only bad news here is for the legal community, which will see a field of play with a potential bumper crop of billable hours go fallow.