The NBA’s board of governors has approved the sale of the Charlotte Hornets, marking a major step toward ending Michael Jordan’s 13-year stint as majority owner of the franchise, ESPN reported Sunday.
It was an almost unanimous vote. ESPN addedas all the owners except James Dolan of the New York Knicks voted for the sale to go through.
A group led by businessmen Rick Schnall and Gabe Plotkin is buying the team for an estimated $3 billion, and with approval from the board of governors for the sale, it should take place in the next week or two.
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Jordan paid $275 million for the Hornets’ majority stake in 2010 and, to date, has been the league’s only black majority owner.
«In the same way that it’s wonderful that one of our greatest, Michael Jordan, can become the primary governor of a team, he has the absolute right to sell at the same time,» NBA commissioner Adam Silver said this month at the NBA Finals. «Values have gone up a lot since he bought that team, so that’s his call.»
Both Schnall and Plotkin are not new to owning an NBA franchise.
MICHAEL JORDAN TO SELL MAJORITY STAKE OF CHARLOTTE HORNETS AFTER 13 SEASONS
Jordan meets Plotkin, who was a minority owner of the Hornets. As for Schnall, he owned a minority stake in the Atlanta Hawks.
Jordan won’t be leaving the franchise entirely. He will remain a minority shareholder in the Hornets, while Plotkin and Schnall will assume the role of franchise governors.
Other members of the Schnall-Plotkin group include North Carolina native rapper J. Cole, Dan Sundheim, Ian Loring, country music star Eric Church and more.
It’s an exciting time for the Hornets despite their brutal 27-55 record during the 2022-2023 season. They still have young talent, including LaMelo Ball at point guard, as they select Alabama’s Brandon Miller No. 2 overall in the 2023 NBA Draft.
Under Jordan’s majority ownership reign, the Hornets were unable to achieve the level of NBA success he achieved in his illustrious playing career.
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They went 423-600 in 13 seasons with their majority owner, who ranks 26th of 30 in the same span.
Associated Press contributed to this report.