Report: Grizzlies valued at $1.3 billion+ in buy-sell transaction

AP Photo/Lance Murphey
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Robert Pera elected to retain controlling interest of the Grizzlies.

How much will it cost him?

Zach Lowe of ESPN:

Robert Pera’s deal to retain control of the Memphis Grizzlies under the terms of an unusual buy-sell clause values the team between $1.3 billion and $1.4 billion, a big price tag for a small-market team that has been among the league’s largest revenue-sharing recipients, sources familiar with the process told ESPN.

Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post:

The bought-out minority owners, Steve Kaplan and Daniel E. Straus, owned about 30% of the franchise, according Lowe. That means this will cost cost Pera between $390 million and $420 million.

That’s a huge outlay, considering Pera bought the team in 2012 for $377 million. That’s why Memphis is now expected to keep interim coach J.B. Bickerstaff rather than hire a more-expensive replacement. Other payroll reductions could be coming.

Pera has painted this move as a step toward stability, but it could mean the opposite. Forbes recently valued the Grizzlies at $1.025 billion. The unique nature of the buy-sell clause probably drove up the valuation in this case, as Kaplan and Straus wanted to drive out Pera or get paid. Memphis is one of the NBA’s smallest markets, and Pera’s suddenly larger investment is far more likely to pay off elsewhere – either with him moving the team or selling it to someone who would.

The Grizzlies are moving past this paralyzing saga, but it’s not cut-and-dry to what.