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NBA In Las Vegas? Don't Bet Against It Yet

Thursday, 1 Nov 2007 | 11:21 AM ET
Welcome to Las Vegas Sign
AP
Welcome to Las Vegas Sign

When the NBA referee gambling scandal broke this summer, there was only one sure thing ahead. That Vegas was never going to get an NBA team. Forget about it. No chance.

The gambling scandal combined with the highly publicized--though not necessarily accurate--portrayal of mayhem in town surrounding the All-Star Game meant that it was time to cross the NBA off the Sin City list.

But over the past two weeks, I've come to see that this is clearly not the case. Last week, Sacramento Kings co-owner Joe Maloof said this to me: "I think eventually there will be a team in Las Vegas. It's very important. It's a great market. It's ready ... (and) it needs professional sports."

NBA Season Kicks Off
The new NBA season kicks off tonight as it tries to face the future by putting several big scandals behind it. NBA Comissioner David Stern discusses the new season with CNBC's Darren Rovell

So when I interviewed NBA commissioner David Stern on Tuesday, I had to ask him the Vegas question: "It's the fastest growing city in America," Stern said. "If I were going to bet the over/under, and of course I'm not a betting man, I think that five to ten years is probably an interesting time." So it wasn't a definite "yes," but it was certainly more of a yes than a no.

News & Notes
SteinerSports.com notes that today Red Sox slugger David Ortiz is signing with them. Steiner sued Ortiz in June, claiming he did not sign enough autographs and sought at least $1 million in damages. So were things settled? Ortiz's agency SFX Baseball and Steiner Sports had no comment.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that Alex Rodriguez could go to the Florida Marlins in exchange for an ownership stake in the team. How many times will someone report this? A player can't accept an ownership stake in a team as part of his contract. It's simply against the rules.

Kudos to the folks at AOL for putting together a fabulous A-Rod version of "Choose Your Own Adventure" I loved those books when I was younger.

Questions? Comments? SportsBiz@cnbc.com

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