HoopsHype Steve Koonin rumors
Chris Vivlamore: Steve Koonin just met with Hawks and Philips Arena employees. #ATLHawks Twitter @ajchawks
After a decade at Coca-Cola, Koonin joined Turner Entertainment Networks, where he has spent 14 years, most recently serving as the division’s president. He’s been overseeing programming, marketing, scheduling, strategy and operations for top-rated networks TNT, TBS, TruTV and Turner Classic Movies. “I love Turner,” Koonin said in a phone interview Sunday night. “It’s been a phenomenal ride with Turner. If this one opportunity had not come up I would still be at Turner as long as they would have me. But to have a third act of my business career with my hometown sports team was too good an opportunity to pass up.” Saporta Report
More than a year ago, Koonin, 56, began talking to the Hawks owners about becoming a minority investor in the team. As time went on, both sides realized that Koonin’s role could be much larger than just being a minority owner of the team. “Over the past couple of weeks, it really accelerated, and it just seemed right,” said Koonin, who expects to join the Hawks later this spring. “This leaked out before we got all the paperwork done.” Saporta Report
Steve Koonin, currently the president of Turner Entertainment Networks, will soon be named Chief Executive Officer of the Atlanta Hawks, according to several people familiar with the decision. An announcement could come as soon as this week. The Hawks had no comment on the Atlanta Journal-Constitution rerport Sunday. Bob Williams, who serves as President of the Hawks and Philips Arena, will remain with the organization operating the arena. Danny Ferry remains President of Basketball Operations and General Manager. Atlanta Journal-Constitution
NBA owners have approved Steve Koonin as a part-owner of the Atlanta Hawks and he will become the team's new CEO, sources told ESPN.com. Bruce Levenson, who has presided over a sometimes fractured ownership group since 2004, will remain the Hawks' controlling owner while taking on Koonin as an Atlanta-based partner. Fights over control of the team resulted in a protracted legal battle and the sale of the NHL's Atlanta Thrashers, which relocated to Winnipeg in 2011. ESPN.com
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