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Old 04-16-2009, 09:23 AM   #1
rufuspaul
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Default MJ to become majority owner?

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/bob...ry/667266.html

Quote:
Bobcats will never leave, owner vows

But Bob Johnson says he'd consider selling his stake to Michael Jordan.

By Scott Fowler
sfowler@charlotteobserver.com
Posted: Thursday, Apr. 16, 2009

Michael Jordan (right) takes in a Bobcats game with Bob Johnson last year. STAFF FILE PHOTO



More InformationCharlotte Bobcats owner Bob Johnson said Wednesday afternoon that he “absolutely, unequivocally” would never move the team out of Charlotte, but he left open the possibility of selling his majority stake in the NBA franchise to Michael Jordan.
His comments came as his team wrapped up its season with improved play but projections of roughly $35 million in cash losses over the next two years, people familiar with the situation told the Observer.
In an exclusive interview with the Observer, Johnson said his close friend Jordan would be an excellent owner for the Bobcats and could possibly buy the majority share in the team whenever Jordan came up with the proper financing.
“If Michael picked up the phone and said ‘I'm ready to be the Bobcats owner,' I'd be more than happy to talk to him about it,” Johnson said. “I couldn't think of a better owner to do it. It's really on his timetable, not on my timetable. If he has an interest in doing it, I'm convinced he could put together the economics to do it.”
As to whether the Bobcats might move due to financial problems and lackluster attendance, Johnson said: “There is no way I will ever suggest to the league or the city that the Bobcats leave Charlotte. Absolutely, unequivocally – that's not an option and never will be for me. Charlotte is an outstanding market, and it will come back like the entire economy will come back.”
Johnson also disclosed in the interview that he owns slightly more than 70 percent of the Bobcats. Jordan, who already runs the basketball side of the team's operations and has a minority ownership share in the club, has said in the past he would like to become the Bobcats' majority owner. It is unclear how much of the team Jordan owns now, but the Bobcats have close to 20 minority partners and Johnson said Jordan had one of the largest shares in that group.
Jordan told The Observer in November: “When Bob wants to step aside, I have no problem stepping in and saying, ‘Hey, look, I'd love to take control of this franchise.' But Bob, he's not at that point now. He still enjoys owning the basketball team.”
Jordan could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
Johnson said that he would be happy to do an “equity switch” with Jordan – staying on as a minority partner if Jordan became the majority owner – but that Jordan would have to “put a lot of capital into that.” Johnson, 63, originally bought the Bobcats for a $300 million expansion fee. The Bobcats have not made the NBA playoffs in their five seasons, but did finish this season with their best-ever record.
“I know Michael wants to own a team, and I want to assist him however I can,” Johnson said. “I would facilitate that as long as we had a group of people who would be committed to keeping it in Charlotte.”
Johnson pointed out that he already had ceded control of the basketball team to Jordan – who hired hall of fame head coach Larry Brown and orchestrated three significant trades this season.
“Michael is making the most crucial decisions already,” Johnson said. “He's running the part people see already. So you should be able to see from that I would have no qualms at all in making an equity switch…. It's not an ego issue for me.”
Johnson also said that if he one day sold the majority share of the team to someone other than Jordan that he would first ensure the new owner was planning to keep the team in Charlotte.
Other highlights from the 45-minute interview, which Johnson conducted from Bethesda, Md., by telephone:
Johnson declined to comment on the Observer's Wednesday report that the team's minority partners have been told to expect roughly $35 million in cash losses over the next two years.
Johnson said he thought the team had “turned the corner” and that one day the Bobcats would win the NBA championship. “I'm very enthusiastic about the team,” Johnson said. “… I see no reason why this team will not be a perennial playoff team and ultimately an NBA champion.”
Johnson said the Charlotte Jumper Classic – the equestrian event that drew criticism because its timing helped force the Bobcats to play their final four games of the season on the road – would likely move to the fall from now on.
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Old 04-16-2009, 06:44 PM   #2
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

So Bob Johnson actually got the message that he needed to change the dates of the horse show. Amazing. I'd love to see MJ as majority owner. But without Bob Johnson who could we use as the focus of our frustrations? Well, there's still Rick Bonnell. Until Timmeh takes over Bonnell's job...
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Old 04-16-2009, 06:59 PM   #3
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

This is awesome news for the Bobcats. MJ needs to take over. It's good to hear that basketball in Charlotte is there to stay.
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Old 04-16-2009, 08:28 PM   #4
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

We can still blame MJ (everyone does now as it is).

At least with MJ totally running the show now, we at least know 1) the FO will spend some money to get some good vibes going on, and 2) big name players may actually want to come to Charlotte to "play for MJ"
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Old 04-16-2009, 11:48 PM   #5
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Timmeh
We can still blame MJ (everyone does now as it is).

At least with MJ totally running the show now, we at least know 1) the FO will spend some money to get some good vibes going on, and 2) big name players may actually want to come to Charlotte to "play for MJ"

and 3) Timmeh may end up working for Bobcats Public Relations instead of at the Charlotte Observer.
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Old 04-17-2009, 08:21 AM   #6
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by onewickedlady
and 3) Timmeh may end up working for Bobcats Public Relations instead of at the Charlotte Observer.

Yeah, newspapers are becoming obsolete.
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Old 04-17-2009, 12:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rufuspaul
Yeah, newspapers are becoming obsolete.

What a shame. We still read what's left of our local newspaper every day. Can't imagine a world without print newspapers.
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Old 04-17-2009, 04:09 PM   #8
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by onewickedlady
What a shame. We still read what's left of our local newspaper every day. Can't imagine a world without print newspapers.

You have to know that modern newspapers are incredibly biased. Plus I guess not a lot of people read different newspapers everyday. Slowly over time, people become "brainwashed" and more agitated. Switching to other forms of media, e.g. internet, offers more options in news providers and can neutralize media bias by a lot.

Conclusion: newspaper is a form of propaganda and should not be fully trusted. Most of those think tanks behind are biased, which means newspapers must be biased.

Damn media framing.
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Old 04-17-2009, 11:17 PM   #9
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Default Re: MJ to become majority owner?

As a professional, I will promise these 2 things:

1) I will never work in public relations unless it's my only option. I hate working with people. In fact, I'm not a fan of being social, unless they are my friends.

2) I will do my best to be as neutral as possible, all while telling the entire, brutally honest truth.
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