HoopsHype Wesley Edens rumors

October 17, 2014 Updates

In a dramatic expansion of their ownership group, the Milwaukee Bucks will announce Friday that five prominent African-American business leaders and philanthropists, as well as two well-known Milwaukee business executives, have joined the franchise. Their addition gives Bucks owners Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry and new investor Jamie Dinan, whose ownership stake had not been widely known, enhanced credibility as they continue to work not only on rebuilding the franchise but also on setting the stage for what is expected to be a major downtown economic redevelopment project. While specifics of what the three have in mind beyond building a new arena have yet to be disclosed, the Bucks made a point in their announcement to say that members of Partners for Community Impact, or PCI, had previously been involved in urban economic development and renewal projects. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

July 2, 2014 Updates
June 2, 2014 Updates

Milwaukee Bucks co-owner Marc Lasry said Friday in a radio interview that he and co-owner Wesley Edens are strongly considering a change in the team's traditional colors of red, green and silver. Lasry did not say what a new color scheme would be but said, "We're definitely looking at doing that (making a change). It does need a little bit of help." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Lasry also said in the WSSP-AM (1250) interview that he is upset there is not more Bucks gear available around the city. "The thing that (ticks) me off is there's no gear," he said. "I wanted to get stuff for friends back home (in New York). I went yesterday (Thursday) to the Bradley Center to get gear. "There are a lot of things we need to do. You're going to see a whole bunch of changes." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

June 1, 2014 Updates

The New York-based investors know they are taking over a team that finished at the bottom of the NBA with a 15-67 record last season. They are taking over a franchise that ranked last in the league in attendance, averaging 13,487 fans. "Our view is we're going to try to do this over the next five years," Lasry said. "We've got the best 23-and-under team, but that's not the way it works." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

May 31, 2014 Updates
May 30, 2014 Updates

Later, when I spoke to Lasry and Edens one-on-one, I asked them if Hammond and Morway would definitively be part of the organization next season. Lasry said, “I have a ton of respect for John and David. I think they know their stuff. I would tell you I don’t think that we (he and Edens) know our stuff (about basketball dealings). They are very good and have a phenomenal track record, so that’s no issue for us.” So they will then be a part of the Bucks next season? “I think so,” Lasry said. “Absolutely.” Racine Journal-Times

May 21, 2014 Updates

The futures of Hammond and Morway are uncertain after the recent sale of the team to finance executives Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry, and the new owners have at least held initial discussions about possible replacements, per sources around the league. But the growing consensus is that the current front office will have another year to make this lottery pick and hope the nucleus it’s put in place begins to perform. Grantland

Milwaukee Bucks general manager John Hammond received some support from the team's new ownership group after the lottery drawing Tuesday night. Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry sat in the front row with family members during the lottery telecast, while Hammond and assistant general manager David Morway were a few rows away. Edens said Hammond would continue as the team's general manager for the near future but avoided making a firm commitment in the long term. Hammond has two years remaining on his contract, as does coach Larry Drew, who suffered through a 15-67 finish in his first year with Milwaukee. "This is like Day 3 since we've been the owners of it," Edens said. "We're very focused on the draft and working with these guys closely. "We're very happy to have those guys working with us." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

May 20, 2014 Updates

The futures of Hammond and Morway are uncertain after the recent sale of the team to finance executives Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry, and the new owners have at least held initial discussions about possible replacements, per sources around the league. But the growing consensus is that the current front office will have another year to make this lottery pick and hope the nucleus it’s put in place begins to perform. But this is one of two jobs all the lurking GM candidates are watching — a group that includes all the names that are always mentioned, plus wild cards like Bryan Colangelo, who would be open to returning to a GM position, per several league sources. Grantland

May 15, 2014 Updates

The Milwaukee Bucks are officially under new ownership, as the NBA’s Board of Governors unanimously approved the sale of the team Thursday from Herb Kohl to Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry. Lasry and Edens, New York-based hedge fund billionaires, agreed to purchase the franchise from Kohl for $550 million on April 16. It took nearly a month for the deal to become official, but the Bucks now are no longer under the control of Kohl for the first time in 29 years. FOXSports.com

May 14, 2014 Updates

The $550 million sale of the Milwaukee Bucks to hedge fund billionaires Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry is expected to be finalized by the NBA on Thursday, a source involved in the process told ESPN.com. In the wake of the Donald Sterling scandal, there was a push within the league to have an extra thorough vetting of the new owners, sources said. That process, however, is complete and the league's Board of Governors will approve the transaction that was initially signed last month. ESPN.com

May 12, 2014 Updates

A source with knowledge of the sale process said Monday the sale of the Milwaukee Bucks to New York investors Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens "is moving quickly." "It's possible there will be news later this week," the source said. Former senator Herb Kohl is selling the team he has owned since 1985 to Lasry and Edens for $550 million, which includes assumed debt. In addition, Lasry and Edens have committed $100 million toward the cost of a new arena, as has Kohl. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

April 30, 2014 Updates

The Milwaukee Bucks released a statement Wednesday on behalf of prospective owners Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry, in reference to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver's decision to ban Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life and force him to sell the franchise. The statement reads: "Commissioner Silver has taken strong and swift action to address Mr. Sterling's offensive comments, which run counter to the principles of equality and diversity that define the NBA today. There is no place for racism and hatred in sports - or in our society." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

April 21, 2014 Updates

The NBA has the right to buy back the Milwaukee Bucks from incoming owners Wesley Edens and Mark Lasry if a deal to a bring a new arena to the city is not in place by November 2017, according to sources briefed on the situation. Sources told ESPN.com that the sale agreement announced last week to transfer the Bucks from longtime owner Herb Kohl to Edens and Lasry for a purchase price of $550 million includes a provision that allows the league to buy back the team for $575 million if construction on a new building in Milwaukee is not underway by the deadline. ESPN.com

April 20, 2014 Updates

Q: Both of you know the metrics of this past season. Last in attendance, worst record, one of the smallest markets, if not the smallest market, in the NBA. Tiny TV ratings. What convinces you that this market can come back and you can bring fans into the arena. A: Edens: First of all, I love underdogs, and I think Marc loves underdogs. The notion of buying into a team at this time in some respects is perfect. There is no doubt there is a tremendous fan base in Milwaukee and in the Wisconsin area for sports. All you have to do is look at the attendance figures for the Brewers. Go to a Packers game. There is no doubt there is a huge fan interest for it. We just have to create a product that everybody is excited about...In the NBA you can become competitive in a very short time if you get the right people in charge and you get the right players on the court playing the right way. I think it's a great opportunity. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Lasry: I agree with Wes. Part of this for us, you can only go up, right? If you look at this, if we do the right things. If we pick the right players. If everything works the way hopefully it will and we can follow the model of San Antonio or the (Oklahoma City) Thunder. I think, look, all everybody wants is the same thing we do. Everybody just wants a winner. If you're winning, people show up. If you're losing, people get discouraged. I think in Milwaukee, you've had one championship and sort of everybody talks about the glory days...When you're talking to your kids about the glory days, your kids look at you and say, "You're fricking crazy." When we talk about the Knicks in New York, they're like, "The Knicks suck. They haven't done anything lately." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Q: What fueled your interest in buying a professional basketball team? A: Edens: From my standpoint, I've been very interested in being involved in a professional sports franchise for a long time. Two things I'm most passionate about in life are sports and business. And the nexus of those two is a professional sports team. I love the prospects for the business aspects of it. For our company we invest in business in a variety of different industries. That's just a tremendously fun, interesting pastime...In the NBA, it's just one of the greatest sports you can be involved in. It's a fantastic league and a fantastic product. It's a lot of fun. That's what it is for me. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Q: What if this arena plan fails? Some people have suggested there is a provision in the sale agreement that if you are unable to secure an arena, the NBA would buy the team back from you and start anew. Is that in your sale agreement? A: Edens: I don't think it's appropriate for us to comment about the sale agreement. It's really the NBA's place if they want to make a comment on that. I can just say that it's not allowed to not happen. We don't really believe that getting an arena built is anything but an absolute positive outcome for everybody. There's no real energy or value in coming up with other alternatives. We are going to build an arena. We are going to be part of the community. The Bucks are going to be a great basketball team. That's our goal and that's what's going to happen. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

April 18, 2014 Updates

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