Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Steelers Are Secretly Shopped

Here is a perfect illustration of sloppy English: if the story states the team is being shopped around, how can it be called a secret?

Inside, the headline of the story is Rooneys Quietly Shop the Steelers, which is better said. Just being a stickler for accuracy, not picayune.

Stanley Druckenmiller, billionaire chairman of Pittsburgh's Duquesne Capital Management, has expressed interest in acquiring the Steelers, people briefed on the negotiations said.
Stanley Druckenmiller was a portfolio manager at Dreyfus when I worked there. He went on to work with George Soros, and they each made a fortune shorting the pound sterling.

The Rooney family's divisions over the future of the Steelers are a classic example of the challenge facing second- and third-generation owners of a family business. Looming estate taxes and diverging interests among the children and grandchildren of the founder raise pressure for a sale, bringing emotional family issues into play.

It's happening with the Anheuser-Busch company now, as well.

The Rooney brothers own 80% of the Steelers through Rooney Enterprises LLC; the McGinley family, their cousins, own 20%. Rooney Enterprises also owns the Yonkers Raceway just north of New York City and its profitable casino; the Palm Beach Kennel Club, a faded Florida dog track that now has a poker room; and other holdings, including a horse farm in Maryland. The Steelers are by far the family's crown jewel. Art Rooney Sr. – a colorful, cigar-chomping sportsman who kept the team going in its early years through his skill as a horse-race handicapper – bought the club for $2,500 in 1933.

Good investment by the patriarch.

After decades of losing, the Steelers became a powerhouse in the 1970s, fielding marquee players such as quarterback Terry Bradshaw and Franco Harris.

If Bradshaw's position is spelled out, shouldn't Harris's be also spelled out?

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