Overtime: Brooklyn Bound?


By: Melva Lloyd

Mark Cuban may have finally found his match, and it comes in the form of a Russian billionaire.  Mikhail Prokhorov has sparked his interest in owning the New Jersey Nets, which would make him the first non-American to own a NBA team.  Prokhorov is easily Russia’s richest man, worth an estimated nine billion dollars, blowing franchise owners like Cuban and Paul Allen (Portland Trailblazers) out of the water.  So when Russia’s richest man lands on American soil, what will be his first order of business?  Well that’s easy, how much will it take to pry LeBorn James from his beloved Cleveland Cavaliers?  NJ Nets part owner, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter has been trying for years to bring both the Nets and James to Brooklyn, and now with the fire power of an obsessed-with-winning billionaire, he might actually have the chance to do so.  James becomes a free agent at the end of the 2009-2010 season, making him the most sought after player in the entire league. 

While teams like the NY Knicks keep their fingers crossed that James comes their way next year, the Nets have a leg up on every other team in the league.  Prokhorov has the money to move the Nets to Brooklyn (700 million dollars to be exact) and the team as a whole has the salary space for one big name player to join their ranks.  The only thing stopping this from happening is Prokhorov’s past and current lifestyle: he’s got a knack for European vacations, young blondes and private jets.  Not to mention is alleged involvement in a prostitution ring at a French resort resulted in a four day detainment.  But how do you tell a 6 foot 7 billionaire that he has to cease all partying and unnecessary spending if he wants to thrive in the states? You don’t…the bottom line is this: Prokhorov lives the lifestyle that most athletes dream of, he’d be able to relate to the players and do business with them at the same time. 

As for all of us Knick fans (and there’s probably only a few of us left) who are praying that “The Chosen One” makes NYC his permanent home, we might have to search for another Russian billionaire to make that dream a reality.  So when LeBron James is searching for a new home next summer and he sees a billionaire waving wads of cash his way, NJ might not sound like a bad idea.

Image courtesy of  sports.yahoo.com/nba.news


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