HoopsHype Michael Heisley rumors

November 1, 2012 Updates

An introductory media conference will be held at 10 a.m. this coming Monday, November 5. Pera and members of the new ownership group will be on hand for their first event at FedExForum to tip-off a new era in Memphis Grizzlies basketball and both media and the general public are invited to attend. For those members of Grizz Nation unable to attend in person, the press conference will be streamed in its entirety online at grizzlies.com. ESPN.com

October 29, 2012 Updates

Robert Pera is officially the Grizzlies' majority owner. The 34-year-old Silicon Valley wireless technology entrepreneur on Monday afternoon closed his deal to buy the NBA franchise from Michael Heisley, according to sources with knowledge of the deal. Pera's purchase price was recorded at $377 million in documents presented last week to the NBA Board of Governors, a source said. The league voted unanimously to approve transfer of ownership to Pera's group during its meeting last Thursday. Pera becomes just the second owner of Memphis's major league sports franchise on the eve of its 12th season in the Bluff City. Memphis Commercial Appeal

$377,000,000 -- Final sales price, per sources, of the Memphis Grizzlies from former owner Michael Heisley to a group led by wireless technology entrepreneur Robert Pera. There had been questions about Pera's financial stake after his Ubiquiti Networks wireless equipment supply company reportedly lost tens of millions of dollars in value in recent months, but Pera bolstered his group -- which includes minority ownership stakes by Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, ex-NBA All-Star Penny Hardaway and former Congressman Harold Ford, Jr. -- with two substantial minority partners who each put up more than $25 million in cash, according to a source. NBA.com

October 25, 2012 Updates
October 23, 2012 Updates

Robert Pera's bid to own the Grizzlies is on the agenda for consideration by the NBA's Board of Governors at its meetings Wednesday and Thursday in New York City, sources familiar with the process told The Commercial Appeal. If the board approves the deal, only one hurdle would remain before the completion of the first ownership transfer in the Grizzlies' 11 years in Memphis: Pera's group would then have to close the deal with current owner Michael Heisley. Pera agreed in June to buy the team from Heisley for what is believed to be $350 million. Memphis Commercial Appeal

Sources told ESPN.com that one of the key agenda items at this week's two-day Board of Governors session in Manhattan is ratifying the transfer of control of the Grizzlies from the outgoing Michael Heisley to Pera's star-studded consortium, which includes actor/singer Justin Timberlake as well as Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and wife Ashley. Timberlake and Ashley Manning are native Memphians, as are two more prominent minority owners in Pera's group: Ex-NBA All-Star Penny Hardaway and former Congressman Harold Ford Jr. ESPN.com

Sources said on Monday that Pera has likewise since recruited Los Angeles-based financier Stephen Kaplan to join the Grizzlies' new ownership group. Approval is generally regarded as a formality once it advances to the point of being presented to the league's Board of Governors -- which includes a voting representative from every NBA franchise -- for a vote. ESPN.com

October 4, 2012 Updates

Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning isn't allowed to own a piece of a football team per NFL rules, but that doesn't mean he can't own a piece of another team in another sport. Sources have confirmed to ESPN.com that Manning is part of the proposed ownership group led by Robert Pera, who agreed to buy the Memphis Grizzlies from Michael Heisley for about $350 million this summer. ESPN.com

September 27, 2012 Updates

Heisley, who has owned the franchise for the past 12 years, remains confident about his agreement to sell the team to Robert Pera despite the more-than three months that have expired since the deal was announced. "I don't think it's dragging on," said Heisley, who accepted a $10 million deposit from Pera on June 11. "Putting together the financing involving hundreds of millions of dollars is always a complex process. The banking industry is a lot more cautious and it takes a little longer than it did in the past. But I have no reason to believe that it won't go forward." Memphis Commercial Appeal

Heisley arrived in town Wednesday, and met with players and team personnel during voluntary workouts in FedExForum. Heisley described his visit as anything but a swan song. He expressed excitement about the roster and said his desire was to simply reunite with the players after their summer sabbatical. "I'm not really worried about whether (the sale) will consummate or not," Heisley said, adding that it is business as usual until Pera is approved. "There's an understanding between me and Mr. Pera that I would go forward and make the decisions that need to be made. "If there's any problem, we'll get together. But he agrees with the way we've conducted business. I don't think that there is anything that has happened that Pera would not agree with what was done." Memphis Commercial Appeal

August 26, 2012 Updates
August 25, 2012 Updates

Now according to a recent report by the Conference Board of Canada, economic and demographic trends suggest Vancouver could support another NBA franchise. Vancouver, like Montréal, is projected to see a population increase of over 1 million over the next 25 years, and it should attract more corporate headquarters. Most of the population increase will be due to immigration, much of which will come from Asia, where the popularity of basketball has grown rapidly. Vancouver demonstrated its appetite for basketball with the Grizzlies, and that appetite should continue to grow. Although the Grizzlies left Vancouver following the 2000–01 season, the population of the Vancouver CMA at that time was barely 2 million and the Canadian dollar was sinking. Those conditions have now changed. The NBA could return to Vancouver one day and be successful there, especially if the Canadian dollar remains strong. With a population of 3.5 million in 2035, the Vancouver market will be large enough to sustain franchises in the NHL, Canadian Football League (CFL), Major League Soccer, and the NBA—but not MLB. National Post

The city already has a NBA ready sports complex in the Rogers Arena, which has a sitting capacity of 19,700 for basketball games. The building housed the Grizzlies prior to their move to Memphis. However, many still question whether the Vancouver market could support the NBA. Attendance was not much of an issue during the franchises first four years in Vancouver, but it significantly declined after the shortened lockout season and the sale to Michael Heisley. Francesco Aquilini, owner of the Vancouver Canucks, are among those that are not entirely sold on the city’s support for the NBA. National Post

July 19, 2012 Updates

Scott Howard-Cooper: At Board of Governors meeting. Grizzles sale proceeding, David Stern reports. Final approval expected in "the next couple months." Twitter

June 27, 2012 Updates

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