At first, Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov said he wanted to sell a minority share of his team. Then he seemed to warm to selling more of it, a controlling share.
However, if the price is right — $2 billion let’s say — he might be willing to sell the team completely, reports Josh Kosman of the New York Post.
The basketball team owned by billionaire Russian Mikhail Prokhorov hoped to fetch around $2 billion, but we hear one interested party has been trying to box out others in the sale process.
A source told On the Money that Alibaba Executive Vice Chairman Joe Tsai has expressed an interest in the team, though reps for his family office, Blue Pool, deny it.
Both the Nets and Rockets are rumored to be in the $2 billion asking range, which would equal what Steve Ballmer paid for the Los Angeles Clippers.
With the popularity of basketball in China, and with the NBA as clearly the world’s premier professional league, it has been a matter of when, not if, there would be Chinese ownership of an NBA team. With both the Nets and Rockets up for sale, it wouldn’t be shocking to see at least one bought by a Chinese billionaire. And that’s something the NBA would welcome.
We’ll see who buys the team, but one thing remains clear — Prokhorov is going to make a lot of money. And he is not giving up his part of the development around the Barclays Centre that also is going to make him a lot of money.