Nike founder Phil Knight and Los Angeles Dodgers part-owner Alan Smolinisky have delivered a written offer of greater than $2 billion to buy the Portland Trail Blazers and are in critical talks to purchase the workforce, sources advised ESPN on Thursday.
Knight and Smolinisky have been engaged in discussions with the Paul G. Allen Trust, which is overseeing the franchise, and the plan is for these talks to proceed, sources stated.
Knight’s deep ties to the area — with Nike and his assist of his alma mater, the University of Oregon — replicate the possible possession group’s need to preserve the workforce in Portland for the long run, sources stated.
Allen’s sister, Jody, has been managing the belief since her brother’s loss of life in October 2018. The perception has lengthy been that gross sales of the Blazers and the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks are a part of an eventual plan for the belief.
Portland is taken into account one of many league’s smaller media markets, however the workforce has an extended historical past of rabid fan assist and regular-season and playoff success. Forbes valued the Trail Blazers at $2.05 billion in its 2021 rankings, making it the Thirteenth-most priceless franchise within the NBA.
Another small-market workforce, the Minnesota Timberwolves, not too long ago offered for a valuation of $1.6 billion.
Knight, 84, is taken into account one of many prime 25 richest folks within the United States, price north of $50 billion. He was born in Portland, graduated from Oregon and stepped down as chairman and CEO of Nike in 2016 after 52 years operating the corporate.
Smolinisky joined the Dodgers as a restricted companion in 2019. He has been profitable in industrial actual property and investing.
The Blazers are present process a franchise makeover on the basketball aspect, together with first-year normal supervisor Joe Cronin and second-year coach Chauncey Billups.