Wesley Edens Rumors
With the tenets of “Moneyball” now employed in the front offices of every major sport, perhaps it was inevitable that professional teams would turn to emotion metrics and neuroscience tools to try to gain an edge in evaluating players. “We spend quite a bit of time evaluating the players as basketball players and analytically,” said David Morway, Milwaukee’s assistant general manager, who works for the owners Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry. “But the difficult piece of the puzzle is the psychological side of it, and not only psychological, character and personality issues, but also team chemistry issues.”
Edens’ first call was to Lasry, a longtime friend. Lasry was interested but, Edens says, he was the one aggressively pushing the deal. “I gave Marc a hard time about stepping up,” Edens said. “We had one chance to buy a team that was close to New York, that was a great franchise in a great city.” To Edens and Lasry, one thing was made clear: If you want the team, you have to keep it in Milwaukee. Kohl, the former U.S. senator who had owned the team since 1985, had no interest in selling to a group that would move the franchise. “If he wanted to sell it to somebody who would have moved the team,” Edens said, “I think he could have gotten more for it. He was very clear from the first minute of the first meeting that it was important [for the Bucks to stay put].”
In fact, Edens said he had a group of Bucks players out to his summer home in Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., in August to hear private presentations on financial management and other ways the players can better handle their finances. A source close to Edens said up to eight Bucks players chose to attend the voluntary session.
For example, Bucks top draft pick Jabari Parker, who spent one year at Duke University before going pro, signed a $22.3 million, four-year contract. “I want to help guys out to understand financially how to be in a better place,” he said. “I know when I was 22 (years old), I made a lot of bad decisions.”