There are rumors going around that Sinclair is looking at buying up the Tribune stations, once they free up some cap space.
Another rumor has Meredith buying the group.
This much is known, Tribune has an investor that is likely going to cause them some big headaches.
Crains Chicago Business writes that the man dubbed "the investor CEOs fear most" has taken a stake in Tribune Media, the Chicago broadcast company that runs 42 local TV stations nationwide and cable operator WGN America.
New York hedge fund Starboard Value disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission that it has acquired a 6.6 percent stake in Tribune Media, and noted that it may "engage in communications with management and the board of directors." Starboard, led by Jeff Smith, bought most of its 5.8 million shares just since the start of the year, though some of its stake is tied to forward purchase contracts acquired late last year.
Tribune Media's stock has jumped 17 percent since Jan. 26, the day after Peter Liguori said he would relinquish his post as CEO of the company after struggling for the past several years to boost its profits and stock. Liguori is expected to step down after the company announces fourth-quarter and 2016 results March 1.
Fortune magazine said in 2014 that Smith was the "most feared man in corporate America" because of his ability to use relatively small ownership stakes to gain control of companies like Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse. Liguori was installed in 2013 after Los Angeles private-equity firm Oaktree Capital Management became the biggest shareholder of Tribune Media following the company's exit from bankruptcy. Oaktree had a 16 percent stake as of the end of last year.
Still, Tribune Media spokesman Gary Weitman said the company welcomes the new investment. "Starboard has a history of being a value investor, and we are pleased that they see the operational strength and long-term value of our portfolio of assets," Weitman said in a statement.
Keep an eye on how this plays out, but it appears that Tribune might be in for some rough waters ahead.