HoopsHype Herb Kohl rumors

April 16, 2014 Updates

The Milwaukee Bucks won’t be moving any time soon. Today, Herb Kohl reportedly sold the Bucks to hedge fund billionaires Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens for $550 million. Bidding for the team has been open since December, and rumors circulated that the Seattle duo of Steve Ballmer and Chris Hansen were interested in purchasing the team. However, Kohl made a condition of the sale that the team would stay in Milwaukee. The Fields of Green

Forbes recently listed the Bucks as the least valuable franchise in the NBA at $405 million, which means the team sold for a 36 percent premium on their valuation. The Bucks are in the smallest market with one of the worst arenas in the NBA, so why were billionaires lining up to buy the NBA’s least valuable team? The Fields of Green

One reason is that NBA teams have cost certainty until 2017 based on the most recent collective bargaining agreement (CBA). There is a slim chance the CBA could last until 2022. However, that is doubtful due to the NBA’s upcoming new media deal driving up the valuation of small-market teams, such as the Sacramento Kings and (drum roll) the Bucks. The Fields of Green

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

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