Report: Michael Bloomberg to join effort to buy Wolves, Lynx

League: NBA

Posted on: 06 Jun, 2024 at 06:13 PM

Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Rodriguez and business partner Marc Lore have added a power hitter to their team as they attempt to gain majority ownership of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx.

Billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor, is joining the prospective ownership group, The Athletic reported Thursday. Rodriguez and Lore currently own a 40 percent stake in the franchises, and they are embroiled in a dispute with current owner Glen Taylor as they attempt to gain control of the teams.

Forbes' real-time billionaires list on Thursday reported the 82-year-old Bloomberg has a net worth of $106.2 billion, making him the 13th-richest person in the world.

Rodriguez and Lore had agreed to buy the franchises from Taylor at a valuation of $1.5 billion and had been buying chunks in 20 percent increments. In March, they owed Taylor more than $600 million as they attempted to buy another 40 percent and gain majority control, but Taylor said he canceled the deal when the partners changed financing groups and couldn't come up with the money.

The prospective owners said that wasn't true, and they have entered arbitration with Taylor in an attempt to resolve the issue. Should the deal go forward, Rodriguez and Lore would have until next March to buy the remaining 20 percent at a $300 million tag.

Per The Athletic, Bloomberg would contribute a portion of that $300 million to allow Rodriguez, Lore and their partner group to become 100 percent owners without waiting until March.

Rodriguez and Lore don't plan to stop with just buying the franchises, should the arbitration go their way and the NBA governors approve their purchase. The Athletic reported they also are hoping to build a new, privately financed arena to replace the Target Center in Minneapolis.

The Timberwolves have played at Target Center since the 1990-91 season, making it the second-oldest NBA venue, trailing only Madison Square Garden in New York.

The Timberwolves finished 56-26 in the regular season and lost to the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference Finals. The Lynx have won four WNBA titles, most recently in 2017, and are 7-2 this season, third in the league.

--Field Level Media