New Jersey Nets Sale

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov agreed to purchase the New Jersey Nets yesterday. U.S. Congressman William Pascrell (D-NJ 8th) has concerns about the sale and New York Times reporter Charles Bagli offers context on the deal and what it means for the Atlantic Yards development.


Charles Bagli and William Pascrell

Comments [15]

Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY

Even with the money from Mikhail Prokhorov, it still won't help Bruce Ratner get the money he needs. This guy is some issues back in his own country as well. The arena will already be a net money loser anyway, so why continue with it. The biggest irony here is that Ratner claimed how much he wanted the Nets to own an arena, but now he intends to give up ownership making them tenants instead, which is what he and his supporters were against. Prokhorov can still own the Nets if they move to the Prudential Center in Newark instead, and I am sure that Jeffery Vanderbeek will even allow him to get about half of the place that will make them own it as well as the Devils. I hope that the judges in next month's court hearings will think with their hearts and rule against the land grab rather than rule for it.

Sep. 25 2009 04:49 PM
correction from New Jersey

He wouldn't be the first "foreign" owner of an American sports team.

Hiroshi Yamauchi, Japan's richest man in 2008 (Nintendo), bought the Seattle Mariners in 1992.

Sep. 24 2009 10:35 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

the taxpayers never approved this project.

Sep. 24 2009 10:22 AM
Susan from Kingston, New York

This is shameful!

Sep. 24 2009 10:21 AM
Norman Oder from Brooklyn

The project was never approved by the taxpayers of NYC/NYS. It was approved by the unelected Empire State Development Corporation.

Sep. 24 2009 10:20 AM
Sam from Brooklyn

Spitzer resigned as Governor because of prostitutes. never arrested or convicted of anything.

Prokhorov gets taxpayer subsidies and eminent domain, even though he was arrested on suspicion of trafficking in prostitutes.

may I ask, WTF?

Sep. 24 2009 10:20 AM
Micahe D. D. White from Brooklyn

It is going to be very interesting to see whether the public agencies, ESDC, the MTA and the housing agencies approve Prokhorov. (With his background involving the planload of imported prostitutes, etc. etc.) Public agencies typically need to do background checks of those they do business with. See:

"Government Agency Background Checks

Public agencies also typically do background checks when projects are transferred. Otherwise the initial background checks would be meaningless.

ESDC’s modified project plan paragraph on transferability (on page 32) is remarkably weak on this subject, another Ratner giveaway.

Here is a very possible answer to the question whether ESDC has the right to approve the Prokhorov transfer. They probably do. Not because the transferability section of the Modified General Project Plan says they do but because it is very likely ESDC has not signed the current deal. In all likelihood it is still being written up.

Remember when we went to the MTA meeting and found out that all these years the MTA had never signed any deal? Until signed ESDC and its board can always revoke anything. ESDC's board only just approved the last deal with the extra $25 million, etc, etc. It is a good bet that Ratner who always tries to squeeze more out of the deal has not negotiated and designed a deal worded to his satisfaction.

By the same token the MTA may not have signed their new deal either.

Michael D. D. White
Noticing New York

Sep. 24 2009 10:18 AM
Norman Oder from Brooklyn

What about the extra $40 million the state and city have agreed to speed to Forest City Ratner?

Doesn't that help in closing the deal? (The Times hasn't reported on this.)

Why did the state give away naming rights?

And doesn't the IBO's cost-benefit analysis regarding the Atlantic Yards arena make more sense than the ESDC's "economic benefit analysis"?

Sep. 24 2009 10:17 AM
anonymous from Queens

Wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall when the Mayor visits the new arena? What will the richest man in Russia and the richest man in NYC talk about?

Sep. 24 2009 10:17 AM
DDDB from Brooklyn

The US Treasury Department's Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States requires an investigation of such deals between foreign business entities and US entities. Will Congressman Pascrell and his colleagues call for that investigation to occur, as it must?

Sep. 24 2009 10:16 AM
hjs from 11211

rem, lol!

Sep. 24 2009 10:14 AM
Daniel Goldstein from Brooklyn

Question: Why are Paterson and Bloomberg supporting eminent domain and massive taxpayer subsidies for a Russian oligarch worth $9.5 billion? Prokhorov could pay for the whole project, twice, out of his own pocket.

Sep. 24 2009 10:11 AM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY

Maybe Pascrell wants to claim that Russian ownership of the Nets is a threat to national security -- like Dubai Ports World.

In Britain, the most famous football club -- Manchester United -- is owned by American Malcom Glazer.

For Britons, that's like the Queen buying the Dallas Cowboys.

Sep. 24 2009 10:10 AM
Norman Oder from Brooklyn

The deal, as publicly described, doesn't fully make sense. How does Prokhorov put up just $200 million and get 80% of a basektball team that once cost $300 million? (That's $240M.) Then he gets 45% of the arena?

Do you think that the city and state would've put up the subsidies and tax breaks had Prokhorov been the owner in 2003?

More here:

Sep. 24 2009 10:09 AM
rem from manhattan

So will they now be called the Brooklyn Nyets?

Sep. 24 2009 10:02 AM

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