May 9, 2012; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley during the second half of game five in the Western Conference quarterfinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs against the Los Angeles Clippers at FedEx Forum. The Memphis Grizzlies defeated the Los Angeles Clippers 92-80. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

Former Memphis Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley dies

Tragic news to report this afternoon as former Memphis Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley has died, this according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

The news was first announced during Adam Silver’s press conference before Game 4 of the Memphis Grizzlies playoff game against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Heisley, 77, moved the Grizzlies franchise from Vancouver to Memphis in 2001, despite stating that he would keep the team in Canada. That ruffled the feathers of many, but Heisley was thought to be one of the better NBA owners during his tenure which ended in 2012 as he sold the team to a group headed by Robert Pera.

Appearing on the Forbes list multiple times, Heisley, who suffered a stroke in 2013, died from the complications on Saturday.

Multiple players/owners/front office personnel expressed their condolences to Ronald Tillery:

Zbo on Sterling: I feel sorry for those guys on the Clippers The guys on our team feel a certain way about it so I can imagine how they feel.

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Griz GM Chris Wallace on Heisley: Mike was as tough and strong willed a person as I have ever met yet he was also  the biggest hearted.

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Mavs owner Mark Cuban on Heisley: He was an amazing man who I looked up to in so many ways. He never looked for credit for anything he did

Heisley was married with five children.

Tags: Memphis Grizzlies

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