HoopsHype Gary Chouest rumors

December 6, 2010 Updates

Another league source said Sunday that NBA Commissioner David Stern would likely be taking these steps because he firmly wants the Hornets to remain in New Orleans. By taking over the team, the source said, Stern would be able to ensure a sale to someone who was also committed to keeping the team in New Orleans. New Orleans Times-Picayune

December 3, 2010 Updates
November 26, 2010 Updates

Intriguing follow-up morsel to last week's note in this cyberspace about the seemingly collapsing sale of the Hornets from George Shinn to minority partner Gary Chouest and the belief of one source close to the situation that the sale will actually still happen by the end of the calendar year: Chouest has been a very visible presence at New Orleans home games. And Shinn hasn't. The Hornets have privately countered skepticism about their ability to keep hold of 2012 free agent-to-be Chris Paul by insisting that the team's high trade activity since general manager Dell Demps took over in August -- which began with the surrender of Paul's presumed successor Darren Collison in a four-team deal to get championship-tested swingman Trevor Ariza -- and the club's well-chronicled plans to thoroughly upgrade its practice facility are signs that the Hornets are moving away from the non-spending Shinn is known for. ESPN.com

November 19, 2010 Updates

One source with knowledge of the Hornets' thinking maintains that the long-stalled sale of the franchise from George Shinn to minority partner Gary Chouest will still happen by the end of the year. There have been fears for months that the British Petroleum oil-spill disaster in April -- and the subsequent collateral impact it had on companies like Chouest's (Edison Chouest Offshore) in the offshore oil and gas industries -- could end hopes of a transfer of ownership control from Shinn to Chouest. ESPN.com

October 27, 2010 Updates

When the New Orleans Hornets open the 2010-11 season tonight at the New Orleans Arena against the Milwaukee Bucks, the state of the team's ownership will remain unsettled but, league sources indicate, still on track to be sold to billionaire minority owner Gary Chouest. It's unlikely -- but a slim possibility -- that franchise founder and majority owner George Shinn could make an appearance for the game, although Shinn has not been around the team during preseason save for the Oct. 16 exhibition played in Johnson City, Tenn., near his new home. New Orleans Times-Picayune

October 17, 2010 Updates

Contrary to a Daily News report, Hornets minority owner Gary Chouest has not bailed on his objective to become the majority shareholder. Team officials continue to work directly with him to make that a reality, maintains someone in the conversation. New York Post

October 10, 2010 Updates

Prospective incoming owner Gary Chouest apparently has decided to not buy the team from long-time owner George Shinn. Last spring, Chouest, a local billionaire, reached an agreement in principle to buy out Shinn, the team's original owner. Chouest had purchased 25% of the team in 2007. But according to a league official familiar with the Hornets' rocky ownership situation, the deal fell apart. "Chouest didn't step up," the source said. "He's not going to buy the team from George. It looks as if George will have to hold onto it." New York Daily News

Of course, publicly, Paul continues to say all the right things about wanting to stay in New Orleans. But the franchise remains in a salary-shedding mode, and other than David West, he's not surrounded by a lot of big-time talent. Without Chouest's deep pockets, the prospect of Shinn putting in the kind of money it will take to bring in more talent for Paul is considered beyond remote. "No deal has been reached," said the league official. "And the price being mentioned - $425 million, which is not just for the team, but also for the building (the Palace of Auburn Hills) and two amphitheaters where they have concerts - is at the very high end." New York Daily News

July 29, 2010 Updates
July 21, 2010 Updates

Hornets minority partner Gary Chouest has had a verbal agreement to buy out majority owner George Shinn since early May, but the two have been slow to hammer out a final sale. Neither owner has spoken about the cause of the holdup. Weber has said only that the negotiations have been "complicated'' and further slowed by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, which has affected Chouest's Louisiana-based offshore oil supply business. "Nobody had predicted ... that the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history was going to happen, which is a big part of the Chouest family's focus right now,'' Weber said. SI.com

July 19, 2010 Updates

The New Orleans Hornets’ transfer of ownership remains stalled because co-owners George Shinn and Gary Chouest are $24 million to $30 million apart in negotiations, according to two sources. Chouest’s unwillingness to agree to Shinn’s estimated value of the team is why he is seeking outside investors, sources close to the situation said. Chouest also is leery about the potential for a lockout after next season if the league owners and players association cannot finalize a new collective bargaining. New Orleans Times-Picayune

July 17, 2010 Updates

The New Orleans Hornets’ transfer of ownership remains stalled because co-owners George Shinn and Gary Chouest are $24 million to $30 million apart in negotiations, according to two sources. Chouest’s unwillingness to agree to Shinn’s estimated value of the team is why he is seeking outside investors, sources close to the situation said. New Orleans Times-Picayune

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