Robert Pera Rumors
Fizdale tried to fix things with Gasol, even flying to Europe after the season to try and make it right. But Gasol was close with majority owner Robert Pera; Fizdale wasn’t. That closed off a potential area of outreach between the two. Gasol had no interest in rapprochement, a stance that Grizzlies players made clear to Fizdale throughout the season. (Caught most in the middle, per league sources, was Grizzlies veteran point guard Mike Conley, Jr., who did and does have strong relationships with both men.)
But, importantly, in his discussions with the Knicks, Fizdale took responsibility for his failures with Gasol. He didn’t blame Gasol or anyone else. As one of his chief calling cards is connecting with players, and not finding common ground with Gasol was an L he has to take. “He knew where he messed up and what he’d try to let it never happen again,” said a source who’s spoken with Fizdale since his firing.
Geoff Calkins: Reminder about the Grizzlies: They are bound to Memphis by all sorts agreements through 2027. And the new transaction may well have involved additional money by Memphis investors and additional safeguards being put in place.
Robert Pera’s deal to retain control of the Memphis Grizzlies under the terms of an unusual buy-sell clause values the team between $1.3 billion and $1.4 billion, a big price tag for a small-market team that has been among the league’s largest revenue-sharing recipients, sources familiar with the process told ESPN. To buy the Grizzlies in 2012, Pera teamed with two large minority partners — Steve Kaplan and Daniel E. Straus, who owned in the neighborhood of 30 percent of the Grizzlies combined, sources told ESPN.
Once triggered, the three groups negotiated for 60 days to try to strike a deal before Kaplan and Straus submitted binding bids, sources have told ESPN. That window ended without a deal. Kaplan and Straus then submitted separate bids, with Straus’ bid the highest. After a waiting period, Pera announced Monday that he would match the bid and buy out Straus. What happens to Kaplan and his shares is unclear. Pera also said he plans to keep the team in Memphis.