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Tony tha Mavs fan
06-29-2003, 06:01 PM
Sunday, June 29

'Detailed discussions' with Jordan prove fruitless

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ESPN.com news services


Michael Jordan wanted to buy the Milwaukee Bucks. But in the end, Herb Kohl wasn't ready to sell.

Kohl, the Bucks owner and U.S. senator from Wisconsin, announced that he is pulling his team off the market.

In a statement released Sunday, Kohl said: "I have decided not to sell the Milwaukee Bucks at this time, and will continue to own them, improve them, and commit them to remaining in Wisconsin."

Kohl, a Milwaukee native who has owned the team since 1985, acknowledged that he had "detailed discussions" with Jordan, who wants to own a team after retiring in Washington as a player two months ago.

The deal apparently was close to getting done, although it still would have needed the NBA's approval, a process that could have taken several weeks.

ESPN.com reported earlier this week that the two sides had reached a tentative agreement, and that Jordan's influence might even be felt at last Thursday's NBA draft, in which the Bucks selected Texas guard T.J. Ford with the eighth overall pick. The Washington Post reported Sunday that the league and the Bucks would soon acknowledge the sale.

But ultimately, Kohl refused to pull the trigger.

"I must say that I enjoyed those conversations and was pleased with Michael's commitment of substantial personal time and personal financial resources to the proposed transaction," Kohl said in his statement. "I was also impressed with the quality of the professionals that he was prepared to engage had we gone forward, as well as his willingness to make every effort to keep the team in Wisconsin.

"I think Michael will be an excellent owner of an NBA franchise and have encouraged him, for the benefit of the NBA, to continue his consideration of such an investment. On balance, I simply decided that I am not yet prepared to sell the team at this time and have instructed my representatives, accordingly."

The statement comes on the same day that Bucks general manager Ernie Grunfeld was released from the final year of his contract. Grunfeld has been rumored to take over as president of basketball operations for the Washington Wizards, a job Jordan had prior to returning to the court two seasons ago.

Kohl, who bought the Bucks from Jim Fitzgerald for $18 million on March 1, 1985, was believed to be asking for $170 million, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The newspaper reported Sunday that local investors were balking at the high price.

"The numbers are ugly," one prominent Milwaukee-area businessman told the Journal Sentinel. "Their revenue streams are going south, and there is a huge negative cash flow."

Kohl has acknowledged that his team has lost money. The Bucks owner initially announced that he would sell a minority part of his team, then opted to completely sell the team.

"It's a bad cash-flow deal," one potential investor told the Journal Sentinel. "Some of these investors would have settled for a neutral cash flow with some appreciation in value. But this is a really thin market."

mavsfanforever
06-29-2003, 07:45 PM
MJ has not many options left now. I guess he will end up as pre. of B.ball will Charlotte.

Mandyahl
06-29-2003, 09:24 PM
i never thought i would say this, but poor mj.

MFFL
06-30-2003, 12:02 AM
Strange story for sure - maybe MJ will try to buy the Clippers.

Mandyahl
06-30-2003, 12:05 AM
well, i don't think the clippers could really be any worse, so maybe that's a good idea.

Nash13
06-30-2003, 12:32 AM
He may not be welcomed with open arms in Charlotte now that he made it cleared that they were just a safe haven in case Jordan didn't make it in Milwalkee.

Mandyahl
06-30-2003, 12:33 AM
i dunno. i can see charlotte still wanting him.

Nash13
06-30-2003, 12:52 AM
Even though i am a homer in this situation, i don't think Jordan should come back here. During his wizards days, he was never good with finding talent, he was good at dumping huge salaries. And he would have to find 15 talented players when/if he come to Charlotte.

Mandyahl
06-30-2003, 12:55 AM
yeah, jordan certainly doesn't seem like he is very good at the job. but i can still see him going to charlotte. btw, how did you become a mavs fan living in nc?