HoopsHype Herb Kohl rumors

April 15, 2014 Updates
April 12, 2014 Updates

Two West Coast groups based in L.A. had interest in becoming investors in the Bucks. One was headed by the agent Arn Tellem, the other included former Bucks executive and coach Mike Dunleavy. But a local group of investors is finalizing a deal to come in with owner Herb Kohl New York Daily News

April 11, 2014 Updates

Don’t worry, you won’t have to cheer for the Seattle Bucks. As I tweeted last weekend, the Seattle guys (Steve Ballmer and Chris Hansen) aren’t getting the team — even though they were willing to go higher than anyone else, they dropped out because Herb Kohl (the longtime Bucks owner and a fearless champion of mediocre basketball) wouldn’t sell them the franchise unless they agreed to keep it in Milwaukee. The guys who thought they had it as recently as two days ago? Hedge-fund billionaires Marc Lasry and Wes Edens, who slid under the radar this entire time and thought they landed the Bucks with an offer in the $550 million range (slightly more than Vivek Ranadivé paid for the equally unappealing Kings). As recently as Wednesday, Lasry and Edens were expecting the NBA to vote on their bid at next week’s Board of Governors meeting. Grantland

So … what happened? Apparently there’s been a late flurry of offers from at least two other parties — not the Seattle guys — and now, incredibly, the price might be climbing and/or Kohl might be wavering to see if he should play this out longer. I thought I had this story nailed two days ago; now, I’m not sure. Will Lasry and Edens land the Bucks? Will someone else swoop in? What promises will be made to Adam Silver, who has demanded a new arena in Milwaukee by 2017 at the latest … or else? And can the Bucks and Kings really go for a combined $1.1 billion or more???? Good Lord! My money is still on Lasry and Edens, but I can’t believe this process is still dragging along. You know, kind of like the Bucks. Grantland

April 6, 2014 Updates

Kohl said he thinks the future of the team is bright. "We have a lot of good young talent," Kohl said. "The guys have played hard and they have never packed it in. We're going to get a good draft pick and hopefully we'll be more injury-free next year. "I think next year is going to be a big bounce-back year. I believe that." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Steve Greenberg of Allen & Co., the New York-based firm that former senator and Milwaukee Bucks owner Herb Kohl retained to bring in new team investors, said Saturday the process is ongoing and added that reports Saturday of a possible sale were premature. "There is a lot of speculation out there," Greenberg told the Journal Sentinel. "There is an active and ongoing process with respect to the Bucks. But we are not going to comment on speculation." Greenberg, who is representing Kohl in the sale process, said it was "premature to make any sort of announcement of a possible sale. We do not intend on saying anything publicly." Earlier Saturday, ESPN analyst Bill Simmons said on Twitter that the Bucks were close to being sold, pending league approval. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Bucks coach Larry Drew admitted before Saturday's game he had heard talk about the franchise's future. "I heard some little whispers," Drew said. "I heard some guys (players) chirping about it a little bit. "It's not a distraction. I've been through it before. It's the nature of the business, and when these type things do happen and there's talk about teams being sold and new ownership and that whole thing, I take it in stride. I've been around this thing a long time and I've been with teams that are in this situation." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

April 5, 2014 Updates

It is assumed that any potential investor or new owner would want a new arena. Milwaukee business leaders serving on a Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce task force studying how best to finance a new arena are still gathering information and have not made any recommendations. Last week, the Journal Sentinel reported that the task force had essentially concluded that retrofitting the BMO Harris Bradley Center was not feasible. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

March 20, 2014 Updates

Herb Kohl’s efforts to attract new investors for the Milwaukee Bucks are progressing well with “a considerable amount of interest” from prospective buyers both locally and nationally, but a deal is not expected soon, according to a source who is knowledgeable in the professional sports industry. “There’s a considerable amount of interest and you just don’t know whether things will wrap up quickly or not,” the source told me Wednesday. Business News

March 19, 2014 Updates

With the worst record in the National Basketball Association and an aging arena, you might think there would be little interest in investing in the Milwaukee Bucks. You would be wrong. Three months after former U.S. senator Herb Kohl said he was seeking additional partners to help keep the team in Milwaukee, there has been robust interest from around the country. That's the word from a source familiar with NBA transactions. "It's a pretty robust process," the source said. "There's a lot of interest in the NBA and this is the only team on the market. There is a considerable amount of interest. "it's safe to say that anybody with the means and interest in the NBA has inquired. A lot of phone calls from around the country," the source said. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

March 18, 2014 Updates

Herb Kohl has repeatedly told me over the years he has absolutely no intention of selling the Milwaukee Bucks to anyone who wants to move it. He appears to be a man of his word. In the last week I’ve talked to some individuals who have been monitoring the Bucks’ impending sale and they claim Kohl has already rejected overtures from two groups interested in buying the Bucks and relocating them to another city. Keeping the Bucks in Milwaukee has always been paramount with Kohl, going back to 1985 when he purchased the franchise from Jim Fitzgerald. If Kohl, a lifelong NBA fan who frequently attended old Milwaukee Hawks games back in the ’50s, hadn’t decided to buy the Bucks then, they would have more than likely been sold and moved as Fitzgerald had other parties willing to pay even more than Kohl’s purchase price of $19 million. Racine Journal-Times

There was a perception then Kohl would remain the Bucks majority owner and the sale process could take up to a year. Now, that doesn’t appear to be the case. I’m hearing Kohl will likely give up total control of the franchise, although it isn’t out of the realm of possibilities the new ownership group would smartly retain him in some capacity, perhaps as the team’s “ambassador.” The people I spoke with contend the sale will probably occur sooner than later. In fact, I’ve been told a deal could be consummated by late April or early June. The Bucks, who have the worst record in the NBA and are already out of the playoff mix, will play their last game of the season April 16 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. Racine Journal-Times

March 3, 2014 Updates

Hall of Fame center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says he would be interested in returning in some capacity to the Milwaukee Bucks, the franchise that drafted him first overall in 1969. Bucks owner Herb Kohl said in December he was looking to add to the ownership group in hopes of building a new arena and cementing the team's long-term future in Milwaukee. Abdul-Jabbar said before the Bucks' game Monday against Utah that no one had approached him, though he would "definitely offer" his services if he got a call. Later, he told the crowd he hoped "everything works out so that the Bucks stay here." Abdul-Jabbar was in town to promote a new tourism ad for the state of Wisconsin that played off his acting role in the movie "Airplane." Boston Herald

March 2, 2014 Updates

Former Bucks star Junior Bridgeman was in Milwaukee on Saturday to be honored by the franchise on his bobblehead night. But there was another reason for all the media interest in his appearance. Bridgeman was identified in a Journal Sentinel story last week as a potential investor in the franchise as owner Herb Kohl searches for additional ownership partners. Bridgeman said he was not able to discuss his interest because of his involvement with a group that has a partial stake in the Sacramento Kings. “Because I’m involved with another franchise, they have some rules against those things,” Bridgeman said. “So I can’t even touch it without having my tongue cut out.” But Bridgeman, who played for the Bucks from 1975 through 1987 and has gone on to a successful career in the fast-food business, did say he is sizing up the situation. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

February 25, 2014 Updates

Junior Bridgeman, a former NBA star with the Milwaukee Bucks who forged a highly successful career in the fast-food industry, has emerged as a potential investor in the Milwaukee Bucks. A source with knowledge of Herb Kohl's efforts to bring in new investors to the Milwaukee Bucks as a way of keeping the team in Milwaukee, said Bridgeman, one of the wealthiest African-Americans in the country, has been approached about investing in the team, and he expressed interest. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

February 20, 2014 Updates

Marc Stein: As ESPN reported this AM, Bobcats trying to push through Sessions-for-Gary Neal deal. But Bucks owner Herb Kohl has not yet approved trade Twitter @ESPNSteinLine

February 19, 2014 Updates

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