SBJ/20101011/This Week's Issue

Cuban, Crane want $2.65M for Rangers bid

Mark Cuban bid for the Rangers with
Jim Crane but lost to the Greenberg-
Ryan group.

Mark Cuban and Jim Crane want payment of $2.65 million in legal fees and other expenses stemming from their failed bankruptcy bid for the Texas Rangers in August.

In a motion filed late last month, the duo asked the Texas bankruptcy court to force Rangers Equity Holdings, the former parent company of the team, to pay Cuban $1.12 million and Crane $1.53 million. The money would come out of the proceeds paid by Rangers Equity to creditors.

Cuban and Crane argue that had they not been bidding, the team would have brought $98 million less at auction than the $593 million price for which the club was ultimately sold.

“Absent [our] efforts and contributions … the auction and the resulting peaceful resolution of these cases … likely would have been impossible,” the motion states.

But Gary Eisenberg, a partner with Herrick Feinstein who specializes in bankruptcy matters, said he knew of no case in which a bankruptcy court awarded fees to a losing bidder when those fees had not been previously approved.

“The precedent potentially is set [with a decision favoring Cuban and Crane] that everybody who loses in a bankruptcy auction gets compensated, which erodes recovery to the creditors, which is anathema to the bankruptcy court,” Eisenberg said.

Cuban and Crane jointly bid for the team but lost to a group led by Chuck Greenberg and Nolan Ryan.

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