SBD/March 8, 2011/Franchises

NBA Franchise Notes: Ilitch Reportedly Back In The Running For Pistons

Ilitch reportedly seeking to buy Pistons, arena for around $360M
FORBES.com's Mike Ozanian reported Red Wings and Tigers Owner Mike Ilitch is "back in the game" to buy the Pistons after the exclusive negotiating period for Platinum Equity Chair & CEO Tom Gores to buy the team "ended last week with no deal." The deal with Gores was "being pegged at" $420M, but sources said that Gores "has increasingly become concerned with the team's evaporating revenue and the disarray that has engulfed the Pistons." Sources added that Ilitch is "looking to grab the team and the Palace of Auburn Hills for right around" Forbes' $360M valuation of the team (FORBES.com, 3/7).

TURNING POINT? In San Jose, Tim Kawakami wrote last weekend "seemed like a threshold jump-the-marine-animal moment" for Warriors co-Owners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber's "stewardship" of the team. Lacob, as a result of his comments about bloggers, "ceased being the refreshing new guy and turned into someone Warriors fans can and will hold fully accountable for his words, deeds, implications and immediate on-court success or failure." That is a "good thing for Lacob, if he's up to this." But it is a "bad thing if he's going to use" Warriors President Robert Rowell and former Owner Chris Cohan "as excuse-making models, and so far, there are weird signs that he already has sort of been doing this" (MERCURYNEWS.com, 3/7). YAHOO SPORTS' Eric Freeman wrote "like all owners, Lacob is going to make mistakes," and fans "should be prepared for it." Owning an NBA team is a "tough business, and there are growing pains even for those who find success relatively quickly." Freeman: "Lacob is finding that out right now, and fans need to adjust their expectations for his tenure accordingly. He's not perfect, because no one is. We can only hope that he's better than most" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 3/7).

FASHION POLICE: YAHOO SPORTS' Kelly Dwyer noted the Hornets "for the second year in a row" are "paying tribute to their city's Mardi Gras tradition by rolling out Mardi Gras-style uniforms." The "tri-toned unis reflect the green, purple and yellow elements that you see in all manner of Mardi Gras decorations." But Dwyer wrote the jerseys are "some of the ugliest things we've ever seen." Dwyer: "One color on the front of a jersey, clashing with another on the back? It just doesn't work" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 3/7).
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