Nikki Finke says at Deadline Hollywood Daily that Dean Baquet's three top deputies have a "suicide pact" to resign on the spot if he is fired for refusing to carry out Tribune's demand for deep staff cuts. She cites unnamed insiders in the Los Angeles Times newsroom. Managing editor Doug Frantz (left), who goes back the longest with Baquet, is essentially the number two editor at the Times. Leo Wolinsky, who had been a managing editor under the last Times Mirror regime, runs page one. John Montorio (right), who came from the New York Times shortly after Baquet arrived in 2000, is in charge of the features sections. Interesting tidbit: Baquet and his predecessor, John Carroll, seriously discussed resigning together last year in a show of disgust with Tribune's directives. In the end Carroll counseled Baquet to stay and take the top job. Carroll says in today's Chicago Tribune that his former managing editor has "reached his limit and I admire him for that" and told another journalist that it's "obviously a very tense situation" at his old paper. There's a roundup of links from earlier today in Morning Buzz.
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