Here's how the WorldCom drama is likely to unfold in coming months:
TALKS WITH LENDERS
Because of its financial restatements, WorldCom has violated the terms of its $8 billion in loans and lines of credit. It's trying to negotiate fresh credit with Citi, J.P. Morgan Chase, and other banks.
If WorldCom can't cut a new deal with its banks, it will likely seek bankruptcy protection.
SALE OF ASSETS
WorldCom is also rushing to raise cash by selling off assets such as its international operations and its MCI long-distance unit.
WorldCom is struggling to maintain its quality of service in order to hold on to blue-chip clients such as FedEx and Providian.
PREPARING FOR SALE
If all else fails, WorldCom may be acquired by Verizon, SBC, or another phone company. It must put its house in order so it can command the highest price.