By Besha Rodell
By Patrick Range McDonald
By Michael Goldstein
By Dennis Romero
By Sarah Fenske
By Matthew Mullins
By Patrick Range McDonald
By LA Weekly
Aside from that, McCourt has long wanted to launch a regional sports network, which could add $1 billion in value to the Dodger franchise. But Ingram said it would be best to hold off on raising money for that until closer to 2013, when the Fox TV contract expires.
Even those trimmed-down ambitions, however, were put on hold when Bank of America rejected McCourt's request for capital.
Also on hold is the "Next 50" project — a $500 million plan, announced in 2008, to revitalize Dodger Stadium in time for its 50th anniversary in 2012. For now, McCourt has ordered his employees not to spend money on it.
The recession also helped to scuttle the CITIC partnership. At least at the moment, there are no plans to buy any soccer teams or establish a global sports empire.
As fans are well aware, the Dodgers' player payroll is down this year, to $95 million. McCourt emphatically denies that this is due to the divorce, and it does appear from Dodger financial records that the intent to cut payroll predated the McCourts' split.
This year, McCourt tried to borrow $10 million to cover legal expenses and couldn't. More recently, he has had to borrow money from his brother and business partners to make his monthly spousal-support payments.
The divorce trial looms as a big unknown. Though McCourt has the upper hand, he and Jamie each have something to lose by taking the case to trial. Jamie's lawyers, led by superlawyer David Boies, are challenging the validity of the marital-property agreement. She claims she didn't know what she was signing, and Judge Scott Gordon could rule that it unfairly favors McCourt and decide to split their assets 50-50.
They may still settle before the case goes to trial. But to do that, they'll have to overcome their instinct to keep fighting until the other one gives in.
On the eve of trial, David Chase has some unsolicited advice for his former business partner: "I hope he comes to his senses one day and realizes that money is important, but family and people are more important. It's just a shame.
"So many young people when they get a lot of success, then the friends of yesterday are no longer important. Money is all that is important. That's the pity of it all."
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