Frank and Jamie McCourt reached a tentative divorce agreement that would potentially allow Frank to retain control of the Los Angeles Dodgers, but with one huge condition: in order to fund a settlement, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig must approve a controversial long-term sale of TV broadcast rights to Fox Sports.
The settlement, announced this morning, has two potential outcomes. The McCourts will go before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Scott Gordon in a special one-day hearing; Gordon will determine whether the Dodgers are community property or the property of Frank McCourt. If Gordon rules in favor of Frank, he will buy out Jamie for $100 million (along with property and tax considerations) and keep the Dodgers, with a catch: the money used to settle will come from the Fox Sports advance, which will also be used to make payroll at the end of the month. (Selig, who has been critical of the broadcast-rights sale, would need to approve it for this to happen.) If Gordon rules the team is indeed community property, then Frank will need to buy out Jamie’s half of the team if he wants to retain control (which would cost much more than the Fox advance), likely leading to a sale of the team if it’s not seized by MLB for missing the June 30 payroll.
So let’s just say we’re approaching a settlement, rather than at one. Lots of things will need to happen for McCourt to retain control of the Dodgers, and lots needs to happen before the Dodgers are on solid financial ground.
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