Before heading off to an event, Silver addressed a persistent rumor that is on the mind of every New York basketball fan: Will owner James Dolan sell the Knicks? The exec was slightly less outspoken with his response. “I have no reason to believe he is going to sell the Knicks because it’s a public company and he said he’s not selling the Knicks,” he offered.
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Aspiring chef Charles Oakley just served up some juicy NBA gossip regarding the Knicks. Last week during a pilot The Ringer filmed called “Tough Chef with Charles Oakley,” the former Knicks big man said Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is interested in buying the team. “I heard that. Jeff Bezos wants to buy the Knicks,” Oakley told The Ringer’s Bill Simmons and Jason Concepcion. “He was going to try Amazon in Long Island, and he went to Virginia. He still (wants) to do some real estate in New York. Why not buy the Garden?
Mike Vorkunov: Knicks owner James Dolan, on ESPN Radio: “Just for the record: I am not selling the team and I am not quitting.”
Dolan and his business partner/friend/muse, Eagles manager Irving Azoff, are building and renovating entertainment venues around the world. That’s Dolan’s true love. Sports are a hobby, one that he’s hasn’t mastered. “I don’t see him selling because it keeps him relevant,” said a person close to Dolan. “It makes him matter. Maybe at some point, but not now.”
According to Simmons’ sources, owner James Dolan is seriously considering selling the Knicks. “Multiple people told me this, who know things. James Dolan is courting offers for the Knicks,” said Simmons. “It’s happening. It’s on. It’s go-time. He’s courting offers for the Knicks. That’s what I heard at All-Star weekend from people I trust.”
Wow. “This is what I’ve pieced together. [Dolan] really cares about the buildings and the in-game/in-concert experience. And he wants to put even more money into that,” Simmons explained. “The Knicks are just a pain in the a–, people s–t on him for it. He feels if he can just sell the Knicks for some crazy price, then he can put the money into that music/in-game experience stuff that he cares about. So, the Knicks are available.”
New York Knicks owner James Dolan, who has put the New York Liberty up for sale, said he couldn’t rule out selling the Knicks if the right offer came along. Dolan, who is chairman of Madison Square Garden and also owns the New York Rangers, told ESPN’s Ian O’Connor in a wide-ranging interview released Monday that there have been “feelers” of offers upward of $5 billion for the Knicks, but that “no one has come through with a bona fide offer.”
James Dolan, the owner that Knicks fans love to hate, may be laying the groundwork for a sale of the franchise. Shares in Madison Square Garden Co. soared on the news. Late yesterday Dolan announced he was exploring a spin-off that would separate the Knicks and the Rangers from the rest of Madison Square Garden. While Dolan would remain in charge of the teams, at least at first, putting them together in a separate public company would offer him the chance to whittle down his stake easily if he chooses. Dolan is understood to be more interested in music and building cutting-edge entertainment venues than sports. “He wants to be more Elon Musk than George Steinbrenner,” an analyst told Crain’s in an article last month.
It’s been a trying week, so let me treat you to something nice. Watch the stock price for The Madison Square Garden Company do a little jig over the last two days: What could explain this spike? Probably the announcement, late Wednesday, that James Dolan, chairman and CEO of MSG, is considering spinning the Knicks and the Rangers off into a separate company, which would smooth the path for an eventual sale of both teams, per a Crain’s report. This suggests that there may be a day, perhaps even in the not-so-distant future, when those teams are no longer owned by James Dolan. The aspiring bluesman, profiled by our own Dave McKenna in 2016, is said to be bringing his business life in alignment with his true passions.
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July 18, 2019 | 3:25 am EDT Update
Barry Jackson: Next significant event for Heat could be re-engaging with Wizards if Beal rejects three year, 111 M extension he’s eligible to sign after July 26. For now, Wizards have rejected all trade overtures on Beal, a potential 2021 free agent
The Oklahoma City Thunder’s discussions to move nine-time All-Star guard Chris Paul to a new destination are parked, and an increasing expectation exists that he will start the season with the team, league sources tell ESPN.
Oklahoma City has been working with Paul and his representatives on finding a trade, but nothing is materializing so deep into summer free agency, sources said. Both sides believe there are benefits to Paul, 34, playing out the season with the Thunder. For now, there’s a belief that there could be more success exploring trade scenarios again after Dec. 15 — or even the completion of the 2019-20 season, league sources said.
For now, Oklahoma City doesn’t feel a need to surrender draft compensation to unload Paul’s contract, sources said. The Thunder want to be competitive and believe that Paul can serve as a mentor to Gilgeous-Alexander, a second-year guard who’s considered the franchise’s future playmaker.
But I stand by my initial forecast: It may not happen until after next season, but Russell will eventually be dealt by the Warriors once Klay Thompson has recovered from a torn anterior crucial ligament in his left knee — thereby pushing Russell down to third on Golden State’s backcourt depth chart.
Has your play in the BIG3 built any momentum toward an NBA return? Is getting back to the NBA even a goal of yours? Joe Johnson: Yes, I’d love to get back and play in the NBA. It’s not my ultimate goal, it wasn’t my goal getting into the BIG3. But if the opportunity presents itself, I would take upon the challenge. I would love to. But, I got a job to do, and my agent has a job to do. I’m not sure about the momentum or how it’s going, but I just focus on what I can do and what I can control.
Can you clarify for me why there aren’t any tampering charges toward Kawhi or the team he signed with? — @Jay_Since82 from Twitter League officials generally won’t open a tampering investigation until there is formal complaint by at least one team — accompanied by some worthy evidence. The Toronto Raptors have not taken such a step. Nor is there any indication that an official complaint is looming from one of the league’s other 28 teams that did not land Kawhi Leonard. It would be a significant step for the Raptors or any other aggrieved team to push for an actual probe.